Rules for family members joining EU, EEA and Swiss citizens in the UK

Rules for family members joining EU, EEA and Swiss citizens in the UK from 1 January 2021

From 1 January 2021, we will see the new rules for family members joining EU, EEA and Swiss citizens in the UK. Close family members and unmarried partners will continue applying for a EUSS family permit. They will need it to join their eligible family members in the United Kingdom. Other extended family members will not be able to apply for it. Also, the Home Office will not accept new applications for family permits after 30 June 2021.

How long you can stay from 1 January 2021

Both family permits and EU Settlement Scheme family permits are usually valid for six months. Family permits end on 30 June 2021. So holders of these permits will not be able to use them after this date even if there is time left on the permit. You may plan to arrive in the UK on or after 1 April 2021. You may even have the application approved more than three months before that. Then, your EU Settlement Scheme family permit will be valid for four months under new rules for family members.

Staying in the UK after your family permit expires

The Home Office will not change the residence rights and status of EU citizens living in the UK until 30 June 2021. If they wish to continue living in the United Kingdom with their family members, they will have to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme after their family permit expires.

Family permits for family members under the EU Settlement Scheme from 1 January 2021

Fees from 1 January 2021

Both family permits are free of charge.

What they do under new rules for family members

Unfortunately, under new rules for family members, you might not get a boarding ticket without a valid permit. A border control officer will refuse you to enter the UK. Therefore, it is essential to apply for a permit in advance.

New rules for family members at the UK airport

A border control officer should check your permit before allowing you to enter the UK. So, do not use the automatic ePassport gates at the airport.

If you are an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen

Irish citizens will continue entering the UK to live as well as work here as they do now.

EU, EEA and Swiss citizens can also continue travelling to the United Kingdom for short visits and holidays without needing a visa. Besides, they can cross the border using a passport which should be valid for the whole period of stay in the United Kingdom.