EU Settlement Scheme

Please see below for information on the EU Settlement Scheme.

Who is eligible to apply

The deadline for making a pre-settled status or initial EU Settlement Scheme application was 30 June 2021.

You need to apply if you are an EU, EEA or Swiss national who will continue living in the UK beyond 30 June 2021.  When you apply to the EU Settlement Scheme and are granted either settled or pre-settled status, this allows you to remain in the UK.  

Those holding settled or pre-settled status will continue to be able to work, study, and access benefits and services in the UK in the same way as EU, EEA and Swiss nationals resident in the UK before the UK left the EU.

You are eligible to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme if:

  • you have been living in the UK before 23:00 on the 31st December 2020, and
  • meet the qualifying residence period requirements, and
  • are an EU, EEA or Swiss national

If you did not enter the UK before 23:00 31 December 2020 and have not previously been living in the UK

Unfortunately you will not be eligible to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme or to come to the UK to visit or study for more than 3 months (either on your EU passport or EU National ID card). Please see the sections on the ISS webpages about "Applying for a Student visa outside the UK" and "Standard Visitor Visas for short courses".

Home Office guidance on absences due to Covid-19

On 10th June 2021 the Home Office released new guidance with concessions for EU nationals:

An EEA citizen who has been absent from the UK and Islands (or, where applicable under Appendix EU, the UK) for a single period of up to 12 months because of COVID-19 is also permitted, under this guidance, to rely on that absence as being for an ‘important reason’ under the definition of ‘continuous qualifying period’.

Where this section says “because of COVID-19”, it includes where an EEA citizen has been:

• ill with COVID-19

• in quarantine, self-isolating or shielding in accordance with local public health guidance on COVID-19

• caring for a family member affected by COVID-19

• prevented from returning earlier to the UK due to travel disruption caused by COVID-19

• advised by their university that, due to COVID-19, their course was moved to remote learning and they were advised or allowed to return to their home country to study remotely

• advised by their university or employer not to return to the UK, and to continue studying or working remotely from their home country

• absent from the UK for another reason relating to the COVID-19 pandemic, e.g. they left or remained outside the UK because there were fewer COVID19 restrictions elsewhere; they preferred to work or run a business from home overseas; or they would have been unemployed in the UK and preferred to rely on support from family or friends overseas

This means that the applicant can rely on any COVID-19 related reason (including where they chose to leave or remain outside the UK because of the pandemic) as being an ‘important reason’ permitting an absence of up to 12 months. This is a non-exhaustive list of such reasons and each case must be considered on an individual basis in light of the information and evidence provided by the applicant.

Irish nationals

Whilst there is no requirement for Irish nationals to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme you may wish to do if you would prefer to have a record of your right to stay in the UK.  It can can also be useful to have documents showing your immigration status under the EU Settlement Scheme if you have family members who will apply to the Home Office for leave and who are not EU, EEA or Swiss nationals.

Applying for pre-settled or settled status

You will receive either “settled” or “pre-settled” status when your application is decided – this will depend on how long you have lived in the UK. 

Your rights with settled or pre-settled status

You can:

  • work in the UK
  • use the NHS for free, if you can at the moment
  • enrol in education or study in the UK
  • access public funds such as benefits and pensions, if you’re eligible for them
  • travel in and out of the UK

Settled status

If you have been living in the UK continuously for five or more years you will be eligible to apply for "settled status" under the EU Settlement Scheme. This includes those with gaps of up to 6 months in any 12 months period and / or one instance of up to 12 months absence for a specified reason, including study.

‘Settled status' (unless granted to Swiss citizens and their family members) will be lost after a continuous absence of more than five years from the UK and Islands (for Swiss citizens and family members under the EU settlement scheme this will be lost after a continuous absence of more than four years from the UK and Islands). 

If you have or are applying for pre-settled status, and are planning on applying for settled status in the future, you must maintain your residence in the UK and Islands (ie not be outside the UK and Islands for longer than the allowed absences. 

This is not just from the point that your pre-settled application is decided, but for the whole five year period you are relying on as qualifying for settled status.

Pre-settled status

If you have not been living in the UK continuously for 5 years you will be eligible to apply for "pre-settled status" under the EU Settlement Scheme. There is no minimum time you need to have spent in the UK in order to apply for pre-settled status.

You only need to show evidence that you currently live in the UK and meet the definition of ‘continuous qualifying period’ in Appendix EU Annex 1- Definitions.  'Pre-settled' status will be lost after a continuous absence of more than two years from the UK and Islands.

When and how to apply

When to apply

The deadline for making an EU Settlement Scheme application is 30 June 2021. We recommend that you apply to the EU Settlement Scheme as soon as possible.

How to apply

You will need to use your e-mail address and a mobile telephone number to apply.

  • Download the EU Exit: ID Document Check app for iPhone or Android phones (see the UKVI's guidance on using this app here).  Complete all tasks on the app.
  • You will then make a UKVI online account log-in and complete the online application form - you will also upload your documents to UKVI via your online UKVI application account.  You can log back into your UKVI online account at any time here.


Application process

If you are eligible to apply under the EU Settlement Scheme

You will be able to apply either inside or outside the UK and free of charge. 

Once you have completed the steps on the EU Exit: ID Document Check app, submitted the online application form and submitted your application documents, the UKVI will process your application.

UKVI have noted that the EU Settlement Scheme processing times are usually around 5 working days however can take longer.  Delays of weeks and even months in the usual application processing times have been ongoing recently due to Covid-19.   

Once your application has been processed UKVI will send you an e-mail or letter confirming the outcome of your application.  You will have access to evidence of your settlement status after receiving the decision e-mail or letter.


Evidence of residence in the UK by 31 December 2020

When you apply to the EU Settlement Scheme you will provide evidence to prove you had entered the UK  before 23:00 on 31 December 2020.

All the documents you submit as evidence of your residence in the UK must be dated and have your name on them. See the UKVI's evidence of UK residence documents you can prepare and submit.  You can upload a maximum of 10 documents to show evidence of UK residence. Each document must be no more than 6MB in size. 

You can get a Certifying Letter from the University to prove how long you have been studying at University of Glasgow on your current course (and for evidence of any previous courses studied at University of Glasgow too).  

You may also wish to submit a rental agreement (showing you were living in the UK before 31 December 2020) and evidence of payment for your accommodation.

EU, EEA or Swiss passport

You need a valid passport or valid national identity card.  You will scan this as part of using the ‘EU Exit: ID Document Check’ app.

To scan your passport or ID card using the app you will need one of the following:

  • a valid EUEEA or Swiss passport or ID card, if it’s biometric
  • a UK-issued biometric residence card

If you are not applying from inside the UK, your national identity card must have a biometric chip.

Biometric photo

You also need to provide a digital photo of your face - this is made and submitted as part of using the ‘EU Exit: ID Document Check’ app.

When original documents need to be submitted in the post

You must send your document/s by post if you have a:

  • non-EU or non-EEA passport
  • biometric residence permit
  • non-biometric ID card

You can also send other types of document in the post if you cannot use the ‘ID Document Check’ app for any reason.


Evidence of your EU status

Online status: settled or pre-settled status

Once UKVI grant you with settled or pre-settled status, this settlement status will be recorded digitally so you will not receive a document to prove this.  However, employers, educational institutions, UK Border Officers etc can access this if required. 

You can view your status or prove it to someone else online. You will not usually get a physical document.

International Student Support have created the below video guide for students providing their status to the university's Immigration Compliance team: EUSS share code video guide for UofG students