Permits Foundation welcomes UK Government decision to cancel fee for settled status24 January 2019
Prime Minister Theresa May made a statement this week in the House of Commons that as of March 30th the government will waive the application fee for EU citizens registering for UK settled status. Those who have already registered will be reimbursed.
Speaking in response to the announcement, Permits Foundation Director Michiel van Campen said, “We are pleased that EU citizens and their family members in the UK will no longer have to pay to stay. In our recent Brexit survey of HR managers, it was clear that employers look to safeguard the rights of their employees and that any registration process should be short, user friendly and inexpensive.”
In November of last year, Permits Foundation wrote to the Home Office requesting that family members be included in the next phase of the registration process roll-out in recognition that some cases are likely to be more complex e.g. family members who are not EU citizens and are not yet working in the UK. Family members with a biometric residence card have now been included. As the registration scheme develops, it is important that the process is accessible and quick for all family applicants.
In 2018 Permits Foundation carried out a survey of HR managers on the impact of Brexit on their EU citizen employees and their family members and the key finding was that family matters to employers. The treatment of family members was a significant topic of discussion in the majority of organisations surveyed. The feedback reflects the reality of international mobility in that an employee’s decision to move also takes into account the needs of family members. Permits Foundation will continue to advocate to the Home Office that decisions on the status of family members be taken at the same time, require minimum documentation and within a timeframe of less than one month as recommended in the report.