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Brexit: Analysis and FAQs

 

Government guidance for UK nationals if there's no Brexit deal

This information was last updated on 2 April 2019.

Q. For the purpose of this guidance, who is an 'EU national'?

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

Q. I'm an EU/UK national. Will a no-deal Brexit affect my ability to travel abroad?

In the event of a no-deal Brexit, EU nationals will be able to enter the UK as currently, but for those arriving in the UK for the very first time after 12 April 2019 there will be restrictions on their ability to stay beyond three 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. 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 exit date (now 12 April 2019), your residency rights will remain unchanged.

However, you must apply for either pre-settled or settled status, through the EU Settlement Status scheme if you intend to continue living in the UK after December 2020.

Staff

Staff 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 12 April 2019you 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 31 December 2020.

Students

Students can find information on the scheme from the 'International Students' webpages.

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

 

Q. I'm an EU national. Do I need to do anything now regarding my immigration status?

The UK government has confirmed its commitment to protect the rights of EU nationals, and their family members, residing in the UK prior to 12 April 2019, when the UK is scheduled to leave the European Union. The EU Settlement Scheme will allow EU nationals to continue living in the UK with the same access to work, study, benefits and public services as currently. There is no need to do anything immediately.

The EU Settlement Status scheme opened for a public ‘test phase’ on 21 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 a no deal) or 30th June 2021 (in the event of a deal). There is no requirement to apply for or gain status before 12 April 2019.

In the event of a no-deal Brexit, the government has outlined arrangements for those arriving to live in the UK after 12 April 2019.

Staff

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.

Students

Students can find information on the scheme from the 'International Students' webpages.

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

Q. I will be overseas, but returning to the UK on/after 12 April 2019. Do I need a visa to re-enter the UK?

No. For our EU national employees and students returning to the UK after the exit date (now 12 April 2019), there will be no requirement to obtain a visa to return to the UK. At border control, you will be able to enter the UK using only your passport or ID card, as you can at present.

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?

Students

For graduate students, 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 graduate student 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 student 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 graduate students already travelling on University business in Europe who did not take out insurance before they left the UK. Graduate students already in Europe without insurance who do not intend to return to the UK before 12 April 2019 should contact the University insurance section on insurance.section.online@admin.cam.ac.uk as soon as possible to arrange cover for their existing trip.

The University will also cover undergraduates travelling overseas on departmental field trips. Undergraduate students on a year abroad, and those on other University placements, are not covered by the University’s insurance. Year abroad students are advised to take out suitable travel / health insurance prior to travelling overseas. Undergraduates travelling abroad after the UK leaves the European Union should ensure they have appropriate insurance in place.

Staff

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 12 April 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. Will I still be able to travel for short-term work-related activity in the EU?

Yes. In the event of a no-deal Brexit, airlines wishing to operate flights between the UK and the EU would have to seek individual permissions to operate from the respective states (whether that is the UK or an EU country).

In this scenario, the UK would envisage granting permission to EU airlines to continue to operate and would expect the EU to reciprocate in turn. If such permissions were not granted, there could be some disruption to some flights.

In the event of a no-deal Brexit, the UK would be considered a third country. Third country nationals can remain in the Schengen area for 90 days (approximately three months). If you are travelling to a Schengen area country, you should ensure that your passport has been issued within the last 10 years on the date of arrival and that it has at least three months’ validity remaining on the date of intended departure from the last country visited in the Schengen area. (The actual check carried out could be that the passport has at least six months validity remaining on the date of arrival).

Q. Will there be any changes to driving in the EU post-Brexit?

The government has provided advice on how to prepare to drive in the EU after Brexit, including information on Green Cards which can be obtained from your insurance provider.

A Green Card is evidence of motor insurance cover when driving abroad. Currently, you do not need a motor insurance Green Card to drive a UK registered vehicle in the EU, EEA, Andorra, Serbia and Switzerland. From 12 April 2019, if there is no EU exit deal and the Euoprean Commission does not make a decision ensuring that UK registered vehicles will not be checked for proof of insurance, drivers of UK registered vehicles will need to carry a motor insurance Green Card when driving in the EU and EEA.

Please read the government's advice on preparing to drive in the EU after Brexit.

Q. I am an EU national who will be coming to the UK for the first time to study / work at the University after 12 April 2019. Will I require a visa?

Under the draft withdrawal agreement, EU nationals arriving in the UK between 12 April 2019 - 31 December 2020 will be able to enter the UK as currently and are eligible to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme.

Further guidance for staff on the EU Settlement Status scheme is available on the University webpages and on the government webpages.

Information for students on the scheme is provided on the 'International Students' webpages.

In the event of a no-deal, the UK government has outlined arrangements on their website and in a factsheet for EU nationals arriving to live in the UK for the first time after 12 April 2019. 

Q. How will the University keep me updated?

The University will communicate with you directly via your University of Cambridge Hermes 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 HR Compliance Team have significant experience with assisting with immigration applications for staff members.

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.