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Brexit

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Fife Council has no control over Government policy surrounding Brexit. However, we will do our best to make sure EU citizens living in Fife are aware of decisions and arrangements that may affect them, as well as advice and support resources.

See all the UK Government information about EU exit at https://www.gov.uk/government/brexit where you can sign up for updates.

Where to find more information and support

mygov.scot

Scottish Government information, including 'Stay in Scotland' package www.mygov.scot/eu-exit/

gov.uk

UK Government information www.gov.uk/government/brexit

Citizens Advice Scotland

A support and advice service for affected citizens living in Scotland with more complex needs www.cas.org.uk/brexit

PrepareforBrexit.scot

Brexit planning for businesses in Scotland - www.prepareforbrexit.scot/


Local support groups

Settled and pre-settled status for EU citizens and their families

If you’re a European Union (EU) citizen, you and your family will be able to apply to get either settled or pre-settled status. This will mean you can continue living in the UK after 31 December 2020. The EU Settlement Scheme is now fully open and it is free to apply.

You will not need to apply if:

  • you’re an Irish citizen
  • you have indefinite leave to remain in the UK
  • you have indefinite leave to enter the UK

Your family members from outside the UK and Ireland will still need to apply even if you do not need to. From 9 April 2019, EU citizens and certain family members will be able to apply to the Scheme from outside the UK, free of charge and based on their previous residence in the UK, without needing to travel here to make an online application.

Read more about the scheme on the Government's website https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families

Confirmation of Identity

To make an application to the EU Settlement Scheme, you need to confirm your identity:

  • If you have any Android device or an iPhone 7, or newer iPhone model, this can be done through the app ‘EU Exit: ID Document Check’.
  • If you do not wish to, or cannot, use the EU Exit ID Document Check App you will be able to send your passport or other identity documents by post or you can make an appointment to have your ID document scanned and verified for you:
  • Registrars Office
    The Quadrangle
    City Chambers
    253 High Street
    Edinburgh
    EH1 1YP

Help to complete the application online

You can get Assisted Digital support to use the EU Settlement Scheme online application form if you’re in the UK and do not have the appropriate access, skills or confidence to complete the form.  Read more about the Assisted Digital service on Gov.UK website.

Contact ‘We Are Digital’ if you need this support and they will make an appointment for you:

  • Telephone – 03333 445 675 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm)
  • Text message – text the word VISA to 07537416944

In Fife the Assisted Digital Support locations are:

  • Cowdenbeath Customer Service Centre
  • Cupar Customer Service Centre
  • Dunfermline Customer Service Centre
  • Glenrothes Customer Service Centre
  • Inverkeithing Customer Service Centre
  • Kirkcaldy Customer Service Centre
  • Methil Customer Service Centre

The Government has announced a new online system so that, if you have applied to the scheme you can view your status as soon as there's a decision.

You can go to your online profile to:

  • view your status
  • understand your rights
  • update your details

In the future, you’ll also be able to prove your rights to others online.

You will not get a paper document to prove your status and rights, as these documents can be open to fraud, or be lost or stolen. Help will be available if you have difficulties using the online service.

See how to access your profile on the Gov.uk website.

New immigration system

The UK Government has also published more information on the new points-based immigration system that will be introduced from 1 January 2021. You can find more information on the new immigration system on www.gov.uk/guidance/new-immigration-system-what-you-need-to-know.

Working in the UK as a frontier worker

You’re a frontier worker if you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen and you regularly commute to the UK because you are employed or self-employed here, but live elsewhere.

You’ll need to apply for a frontier worker document to enter the UK as a frontier worker from 1 January 2021. The UK Government will update their advice for frontier workers when more information is available.

Further guidance and support

Online

Telephone

  • Applicants can contact the EU Settlement Resolution Centre over the phone if they have questions about individual applications on 0300 123 7379 or use the online form. The centre is open from Monday to Friday between 8am and 8pm, excluding public holidays, and on Saturday and Sunday between 9.30am and 4.30pm.

Impartial Professional Advice

Most applicants to the EU Settled Status Scheme will find their applications are processed promptly and successfully.

If, however, you find that you require professional impartial advice about your application, COSLA has highlighted a useful resource to enable access to OISC registered advisers. The OISC  - Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner – regulates the work of advisers ensuring they are fit and competent and act in the best interest of their clients.

The OISC has an Adviser Finder which will enable you to find a local adviser and you will be able to identify which advisers are free to provide initial advice.

Statement issued by the Home Office, 21 August 2019:

Update on the EU Settlement Scheme

There have been reports in the media and on social media regarding plans to end freedom of movement after we leave the EU, as well as what this means for EU citizens resident in the UK.

We want to reassure all EU citizens and their family members in the UK that you still have until at least 31 December 2020 to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme, even in the event of a no-deal exit. Furthermore, if someone who is eligible for status is not in the UK when we leave the EU, they will still be free to enter the UK as they are now.

Those who have not yet applied to the EU Settlement Scheme by 31 October 2019 will still have the same entitlements to work, benefits and services. Those rights will not change. EU citizens will continue to be able to prove their rights to access these benefits and services in the same way as they do now.

See also the Home Office’s freedom of movement factsheet or ask them a question.

If you haven’t already, you can also sign up to receive updates like this one direct from the Home Office.

Pensions & benefits

What will happen to EU citizen’s occupational pensions after Brexit?

There is nothing in UK pensions legislation which prevents occupational pension schemes from making pension payments overseas. We do not expect that this will change as a result of the UK’s exit from the EU.

If your pension is paid into a UK bank account, your bank should contact you if they expect any changes as a result of the UK’s exit from the EU. If you are unsure whether you have an occupation pension or personal pension, you should contact your provider to check.

See UK Government guidance: "EU citizens in the UK: benefits and pensions in a ‘no deal’ scenario"

Where to find more information and support