With the dramatic news yesterday that the UK has voted to leave the EU, the endless discussions (and drama) of the campaigning for both positions comes to an end and the reality of ‘leave’ begins.
One of the biggest questions coming out of the decision to leave the EU is the impact on UK businesses relying on EU workers and for the 3 million EU migrants (and their dependents) living in the UK?
Here is our quick reference guide to the immigration implications of Brexit.
What happens now?
Nothing changes – yet.
The UK continues its membership of EU as it has in the past and it is estimated that will continue to do so for the next 2 years (at least)
The Treaty on the European Union requires that the member state needs to formally give notice of its intention to leave triggering a 2-year period (which may be extended by unanimous agreement) after which its membership of the EU will cease.
With David Cameron announcing his resignation and stating that the new leadership needs to take over means that it is unlikely the Article 50 notice would be triggered till October (when new leader is chosen). Once notice has been given, then UK will begin negotiations with the EU for the terms of exit.
Big question: What will happen to EU migrants already in the UK?
EU citizens already in the UK continue to have free movement rights (until UK formally leaves the EU).
It is expected that transitional arrangements will be made for these EU citizens to be granted permission under the UK immigration Rules when the UK leaves the EU.
However, it remains to be determined by the government on areas like:
– What that permission will be (indefinite or temporary),
– What will be the cut off (e.g. those who have already acquired permanent residence under EU law having lived in the UK for 5 years, those present in the UK on the date of the referendum, those present in the UK on the date the UK ceases to be a member of the EU etc),
– What application process may be involved.
What will happen to EU nationals wishing to come to the UK once it is no longer in the EU?
Depending on the negotiations on withdrawal and the terms that the UK gets from the EU it is likely that Nationals of EU member states would need to meet the requirements of UK immigration laws.
There is a possibility that EU nationals seeking to come to UK for holidays or short visits are less likely to be impacted, however the EU nationals seeking to come to UK to work or study are more likely to have to file Entry clearance applications (like the non EU nationals).
There are likely to be several changes to accommodate this shift and it is highly unlikely that the UK Immigration Rules will not evolve. For instance, the current rules for Tier 2 General visa require that the sponsoring company prove that suitable migrants were not available from within the UK and the EEA and hence a non EU national is being recruited – this will need to changed.
In addition, if entry clearance applications will need to be filed to enter the UK, then UK will have to set up consulates/embassies, VFS etc. to manage the flow of applications from the new places.
Impact on UK citizens living in other EU member states?
Presently there is no immediate change for British citizens in the EU.
The final position will depend on the negotiations between the UK and EU member states. Of course the interest and wellbeing of the British citizens would be a key driver in the negotiations.
If you want more details or what to know how Brexit will affect your visa, call our UK Visa Expert – Mumbai | Delhi | Gurgaon | Chandigarh | Vadodara | Bangalore on +91 98191 27002
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This news is based on the following topic:
– United Kingdom European Union membership referendum, 2016
– European Union
– EU referendum
– What the E.U. is