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Brexit: Analysis and FAQs

 

For the purposes of this guidance, ‘EU national’ includes all of the following nationalities: is a national of: Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Republic of Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden.

This information was last updated on 11 February 2019.

Q. What impact will a no-deal Brexit have on research funding?

UK institutions remain fully eligible to apply for EU funding until the day the UK departs from the EU (currently 29th March 2019). After the UK’s departure from the EU, eligibility to apply for EU funding will be dependent on the wider agreement between the UK and EU. In case of a no-deal Brexit, the UK will be considered a third country and eligibility to apply for EU funds will be dependent on the legal framework in place at the time. The Research Office will monitor developments closely and will update researchers and departments as soon as further clarification is provided.

The UK government has committed to underwrite all Horizon 2020 awards which are submitted (and subsequently awarded) until the date the UK leaves the EU. In case of a no-deal Brexit and if the government underwriting is needed, the Research Office will liaise with UKRI to ensure awards are transitioned into a UK scheme and funds are received in accordance with guidance provided at the time.

The Cambridge Research Office provides advice on the impact of Brexit on EU grants, research projects and collaborations. For further information please contact the EU team on H2020@admin.cam.ac.uk using the email title 'Brexit query'.

Q. Can I still apply for European Union research funding?

UK institutions remain fully eligible to apply for EU funding until the day the UK departs from the EU (currently 29th March 2019). After the UK’s departure from the EU, eligibility to apply will be dependent on the wider agreement between the UK and EU. The Research Office will update researchers and departments as soon as further clarification is provided.

Q. What will happen to my research proposal, which is currently under consideration?

The UK government has committed to underwrite all Horizon 2020 awards which are submitted (and subsequently awarded) until the date the UK leaves the EU.

Q. I am currently funded by a Horizon 2020 grant. What will happen to my funding?

The UK government has committed to underwrite all Horizon 2020 awards which are submitted (and subsequently awarded) until the date the UK leaves the EU. In preparation for a no-deal Brexit and as requested by the government, the Research Office has been liaising with UKRI and has provided initial information in preparation for the underwrite. The Research Office will continue to provide information as needed.

Q. How can Departments who receive EU grants prepare for a no-deal scenario?

The University is asking all Departments in receipt of EU funds to prepare the following by 1st March 2019:

  • Ensure all relevant expenditure is posted to EC grants;
  • Relevant documents (for example, timesheets and invoices) are completed and available;
  • Outstanding queries are clarified;
  • Pending amendments are finalised.

This will enable the Research Operations Office to plan and implement the transition from EU into national funding as efficiently as possible – and hopefully with minimal disruption to the research staff involved and the project.

Q. Will Brexit affect my ability to stay in the UK?

No. There is no anticipated possibility of a ‘cliff edge’ regarding the rights of EU nationals for those already present in the UK. Whether there is a deal or no deal, for EU nationals who are resident before the exit date (29th March 2019), your residency rights will remain unchanged.

However, you must apply for either pre-settled or settled status, through the EU Settlement Status scheme. You can find out further information on this scheme here.

If you are currently employed by the University and working abroad but were resident in the UK before 29th March 2019, you will still be able to apply for either pre-settled or settled status provided you have not been absent for more than 5 years continuously (for any reason) and return to the UK before 31st December 2020.

Q. Do I need to do anything now?

The EU Settlement Status scheme opened for a public ‘test phase’ on 21st January, which will merge into the full public rollout, planned for March 2019.

All EU nationals in the UK will be required to apply for either pre-settled or settled status. The application deadline is 31st December 2020 (in the event of no deal) or 30 June 2021 (in the event of a deal). There is no requirement to apply for or gain status before 29th March 2019.

Further guidance on the EU Settlement Status scheme, including how to make an application, is available on the University webpages and on the government webpages.

Q. Will a no-deal Brexit affect my ability to travel abroad?

In the event of a no-deal Brexit, EU/EEA and Swiss nationals will be able to enter the UK as currently, but for those arriving in the UK for the very first time after 29 March 2019 there will be restrictions on their ability to stay beyond 3 months (more information can be found on the government website and this factsheet).

For UK citizens travelling in Europe, the European Council has confirmed that, in the event of no deal, it will allow visa-free travel to all EU/EEA and Swiss countries, including those not in the Schengen zone, for a period of up to 90 days (across any 180 day period). This will remain the case provided the UK reciprocates on the same basis. There will be no restrictions on stay during that 90 day period.

Further information for UK nationals who will be travelling to the EU in the event of no deal, including the requirement to have a minimum six months remaining on your passport, is provided on the government website.

In respect of travel, the UK government would envisage granting permission to EU airlines to continue to operate air services between the UK and the EU and expects EU countries to reciprocate. The European Commission has also acknowledged an agreement on air services would be desirable in the event of the UK leaving with no deal. If such permissions are not granted, there could be some delays to flights. Read the full information on the government website.

For students studying or undertaking research in Europe, information for UK nationals living in the EU is provided on the UK government website.

You are advised to keep up to date with information on the government website and sign up for relevant updates.

Q. I have heard that the EHIC card is unlikely to be valid for UK nationals travelling to the EU if there is a no deal. Will the University provide equivalent travel insurance?

The University will provide equivalent-level travel insurance for temporary trips to EU countries in the same way that it does for the rest of the world. This can be arranged via the University insurance section. Any staff member travelling anywhere on University business should arrange it as it provides much wider cover than just medical expenses.

The insurance, which does not cost the staff member anything, includes cover for remedial treatment for known medical conditions. Travel insurance does not cover elective treatment, treatment arranged overseas before a trip, repeat medication prescribed in the UK, and over-the-counter medication. For insurance cover to be valid  cover must be arranged before the trip commences.

In relation to issues that may arise from a no deal Brexit, only the University insurance section can arrange cover for staff members already travelling on University business in Europe who did not take out insurance before they left the UK. Staff members already in Europe without insurance who do not intend to return to the UK before 29 March 2019 should contact the University insurance section on insurance.section.online@admin.cam.ac.uk as soon as possible to arrange cover for their current  trip.

Q. How will the University keep me updated?

The University will communicate with you directly via your University of Cambridge email address when there are significant updates. This website (www.eu.admin.cam.ac.uk) will also be regularly updated and revised to reflect up-to-date information.

Q. Who should I contact if I have queries about my position?

The University’s International Student Office provides information on a range of student-related immigration matters for applicants, students and their family members. 

The HR Compliance Team have significant experience with assisting with immigration applications for staff members.

The Cambridge Research Office provides advice on the impact of Brexit on EU grants, research projects and collaborations. For further information please contact the EU team on H2020@admin.cam.ac.uk using the email title 'Brexit query'.

Q. I’m a non-EEA national. Is there any impact on me?

The referendum has no effect upon the UK immigration system and there are no foreseeable changes to the mechanism by which non-EEA nationals can visit, study, work, or settle in the UK.