The Home Office has announced a number of changes to the EU Settlement Scheme. Those who have been granted pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme will have their rights strengthened by the newly implemented changes. Let’s take a look at what the EU Settlement Scheme changes are.


Duration of pre-settled status extensions


The first major change is that the duration of pre-settled status extensions has been increased from 2 to 5 years. Furthermore, pre-settled status holders will no longer lose this status due to residence abroad for 2 years. From now on, pre-settled status holders will be on a parity with those who have settled status. This amounts to five years normally, as well as four years for Swiss nationals and their family members.


Removal of pre-settled status expiry date from digital profiles


There has also been a significant change when it comes to Right to Work, Right to Rent and View and Prove. The pre-settled status expiry date has been removed from the digital profiles shown to third parties for the online checking services related to these checks. In addition to this specific change, where an individual remains in their employment or as part of a tenancy agreement, employers, landlords and letting agents will no longer be required to conduct a further right to work or right to rent check.


This news will be welcomed by those with pre-settled status, who have on occasion been subject to temporary contracts as it could be seen by employers that their pre-settled status was due to expire.


After Brexit, the loss of automatic residence rights for EU citizens in the UK resulted in the necessity of the EU Settlement Scheme. As of 31st December 2023, 5.7 million people have secured their rights in the UK. This consists of 2 million people holding pre-settled status, as well as 3.7 million people holding settled status in the UK.


For those with pre-settled status, you are usually able to apply for settled status once you have lived in the UK for 5 years in a row.


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