The good news is that nothing much is changing now. A transition period is in place that will last until 31 December 2020. During this time, there will still be no change in terms of free movement in the UK. However, UK citizens are no longer EU citizens.
EU Settlement Scheme deadlines
Citizens with EU passports will still be able to come to the UK to settle until 31 December 2020. Furthermore, they will still have time to register under the EU Settlement Scheme until 30 June 2021.
South Africans with EU passports, who still hope to settle in the UK under the EU Settlement Scheme, thus still have the chance to do so until 31 December 2020.
There is thus no cause for immediate panic to reach any deadlines.
EU citizens and their family members
It is important that non-EU family members living in the UK with the EU Citizen by 31 December 2020 also need to apply to the EU settlement scheme.
Close family members of an EU family member (who are settled in the UK), will have no time limit on when they can join the EU family member in the UK. They need to ensure that the relationship still exists at the time they join him/her.
The Home Office defines close family members as; spouses, civil partners, unmarried partners, and dependent children, grandchildren, parents and grandparents. These family members do not need to be EU citizens; they can be any nationality.
What will the EU Settlement Scheme mean for me?
The EU Settlement scheme allows a person and his/her family members to reach the immigration status they need to continue to live, work and study in the UK.
It also means that you will continue to be eligible for public services such as healthcare and schools, public funds, and pensions. A person with settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme will also eventually be able to apply for British citizenship, once they meet all the requirements.
Breytenbachs and the EU Settlement Scheme
Breytenbachs can assist EU citizens and their family members with applications for pre-settled and settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme. Applying for this status will enable EU citizens and their family members to continue living in the UK after Brexit.
Please note that the information in this article does not constitute professional advice. It is provided for general information purposes, without giving any warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied.