As you may be aware, the UK Government has now reached agreement with the European Union in relation to citizens’ rights in its negotiations concerning the UK’s withdrawal from the EU. This is good news as it will provide certainty to millions of EU citizens and their families in the UK.

EU citizens who have resided in the UK continuously and lawfully for five years before 29 March 2019 will be entitled to apply to stay indefinitely by obtaining “settled status”. That means they will be free to live in the UK, have access to public funds and services and go on to apply for British citizenship. Those unable to meet the five year threshold by 29 March 2019 will be entitled to “temporary status” until they acquire the necessary five years to be able to apply for settled status.  Applications are to be made by 29 March 2021.

Family members who are living with, or join, EU citizens in the UK by 29 March 2019 will also be able to apply for settled status, usually after 5 years in the UK. Close family members (spouses, civil and unmarried partners, dependent children and grandchildren, and dependent parents and grandparents) will be able to join EU citizens after exit, where the relationship existed on 29 March 2019.

Details of the application process and the specific requirements have yet to be announced, but it is hoped that the new process for obtaining “settled status” will be much simpler than an application for citizenship. The current advice online can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/status-of-eu-nationals-in-the-uk-what-you-need-to-know

Our current database does not hold details of your residency status. As a result, if you are not a British citizen and fall into one the categories described above it would be helpful if you could please provide us with details of your residency status by contacting Ministries Council at ministries@churchofscotland.org.uk. If we are made aware of your circumstances now we will be in a better position to plan ahead and to provide any appropriate support, in due course.

I confirm that this information will be held securely in terms of The Data Protection Act 1998 and all UK Data Protection laws and will only be used for the specific purpose set out above. When we no longer require to support you further we will destroy it securely.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact me directly on 0131 2255722 (Ext 2213).

 

Craig Renton

Depute Council Secretary

 


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