Priti Patel says 'broken system' encourages illegal migration
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EU, EEA or Swiss citizens can apply for the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK beyond June 30 2021 and where claimants are eligible, they’ll be awarded re-settled or settled status. This will be crucial for European workers as both of these statuses allow access to various state and employment benefits.
The scheme has proven to be immensely popular, as in February the Home Office announced it had hit the milestone of five million applications for the scheme, four months ahead of the June deadline.
At the time, Priti Patel, the Home Secretary welcomed the news.
She said: “It is fantastic news that over five million people have applied to the hugely successful EU Settlement Scheme.
“It’s the biggest scheme of its kind in UK history and will mean European citizens and their families can continue to call the UK home.”
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Today, the Home Office was forced to address the scheme once more as next month’s deadline quickly approached.
Recently, Stuart C McDonald, the Scottish National Party MP for Cumbernauld, Kilsyth and Kirkintilloch East, asked the following in the Commons: “To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, whether an EU citizen care worker who fails to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme by June 30 2021 will be prosecuted if they continue to work without status.”
Today, the Government answered this question as Kevin Foster, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary for the Home Office responded.
He said: “Where an EEA citizen has reasonable grounds for missing the EU Settlement Scheme application deadline, they will be given an opportunity to make a late application.
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“Any EEA citizen encountered by Immigration Enforcement after June 30 2021, who may be eligible to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme, will be issued with a notice which provides a further 28 days for the individual to submit their application.
“Further information will be provided to employers shortly about what they should do if they have an employee who finds themself in this situation.
“Each individual case will be considered on its own merits.”
Eligible claimants can apply for the scheme on the Government’s website and this can be done using any device.
When applying, claimants will need to provide proof of identity such as a valid passport or national identity card.
They’ll also need to provide a digital photo of their face when applying.
Those seeking settled status will also need to provide proof of continuous residence.
A National Insurance number may be all that’s needed for this but additional evidence such as bank statements or council tax bills may also be required.
Once a claimant has applied, they’ll be sent a letter confirming if they’ve been awarded settled or pre-settled status.
Should an application be unsuccessful, claimants will be able to apply again and provide additional evidence at any time before June 30 2021.
Those awarded pre-settled stats will need to live in the UK for five years in a row before they can apply for settled status.
Once a claimant has had settled status for at least 12 months, they’ll usually be able to apply for full citizenship.
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