Settled calls on government to reassure EU Settlement Scheme applicants waiting for passport renewals

Less than 100 days to the EU Settlement Scheme deadline of June 30th

Today marks 100 days until the deadline before which all EU citizens must apply for the EU Settlement Scheme.

Those who have not secured their Settled or Pre-settled Status by June 30th are likely to find it difficult to:

  • Retain employment
  • Rent a home
  • Access the NHS
  • Receive state benefits, including pension
  • Continue their studies

Europeans without Settled or Pre-Settled Status would be living in the UK on an unlawful basis, and could be removed from the country.

Settled, along with its more than one hundred volunteers, works across all EU languages. We advise hundreds of EU citizens each day and guide them through the application for their Settled or Pre-Settled Status.

Passport renewal backlogs at embassies and consulates

Settled is able to help with a wide variety of difficulties. But one issue that we are powerless to tackle is the backlog of passport and national identity card renewals currently facing many EU embassies and consulates in the UK.

EU nationals are desperately seeking our advice on how they can secure their Settled or Pre-Settled Status and remain legally in the UK, while waiting for their passports or national identity cards to be renewed.

A huge effort is being made to respond by embassies and consulates, who have taken on additional staff to cope with demand.

But the truth is that processing documents at such a rate was never going to be possible.

The common practice for many EU citizens who call the UK their home, is to travel back to their country of origin in order to renew their passport or ID card. During the pandemic, with the travel restrictions it has necessitated, that just hasn’t been possible, resulting in a workload that the embassies and consulates would never have foreseen.

Government action

With less than 100 days to the deadline, we are calling on the government to reassure EU citizens that their right to remain in the UK, as agreed in law as part of the EU-UK Withdrawal Agreement, will not be refused if their application for Settled or Pre-Settled Status is delayed because they are waiting for their passport or national identity card to be renewed.

Without this reassurance, the country could witness the sudden loss of legal status for people living in the UK on a scale greater than that which affected the Windrush generation.

Kate Smart, CEO Settled

8 thoughts on “Settled calls on government to reassure EU Settlement Scheme applicants waiting for passport renewals”

  1. Hello from Greece
    I submitted my application on the 30thDec2020 and I still haven’t heard back. It will be 3 months next week. From your experience, is it taking that long to give an outcome?
    Thanks, Athena

    Reply
  2. Hello
    My husband from Egypt submitted application (family permit) October 2020, only has received certificate of application, everything submitted including biometrics, still no answer, waiting 6 months

    Reply
  3. Hello, I completed my application at the end of March 2021 and have not heard anything back. There is not really clear contact details to chase this with GOV.UK so it is quite unsettling to be in the position just waiting.

    Reply

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