Which children are eligible?

  • Children/young persons from EU/EEA countries and Switzerland who were residing in the UK prior to 31 December 2020.
  • Children/young persons who are not EU/EEA/Swiss citizens if their parent or guardian (or their spouse or civil partner) is an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen who started living in the UK prior to 31 December 2020.

Children/young persons who hold British or Irish citizenship do not need to apply under the EU Settlement Scheme, Irish children can apply if they want to. However, it is important not to assume that children born in the UK or the Republic of Ireland automatically hold citizenship of that country. We recommend that British/Irish children get a passport to prove their nationality if they do not already have one.

In most cases, children born and adopted after 31 December 2020 are still covered by the EUSS. If the child is born or adopted in the UK before 01 April 2021, the parents or guardians must make an application for the child as soon as possible.

If the child is born or adopted in the UK on or after 01 April 2021, the parents or guardians must apply within 3 months of the date the child was born or adopted. Late applications will be accepted but you should explain why you are making a late application.

Any child born abroad from 01 January 2021 needs to apply to enter the UK as a joining family member. If the child is born or adopted abroad after 01 January 2021, or you are planning to travel abroad to give birth, we recommend you seek legal advice before traveling.

What first steps do I need to take?

You can find more general information on applying to the EU Settlement Scheme on our webage here.

How do I link my EUSS status to the application for my child?

It is possible to link an application for a child to their parent or legal guardian, when starting the application process from the EU EXIT:ID Document Check App.

To apply for a child, the parent/legal guardian must begin a new application for your child. If the child is under 21 years old, the you can ‘link’ the child’s application to your own. This means that your child will automatically get the same status as you, the parent/legal guardian, if their application is successful.

To do this, you have to provide proof of your child’s identity. Select the option to apply ‘using your parent’s residence’. Then enter your (pre-)settled status application number, and provide proof of your relationship to the child (e.g. a birth certificate). If the child was also living in the UK before 1 January 2021, the Home Office will also ask for evidence of residence to confirm this.

What evidence is needed if the child’s application is not to be linked to a parent or legal guardian?

There are cases when a child’s application is not linked to a parent or guardian’s, such as for children in care or if the child lives and studies in the UK and the parents do not.

In these cases, the Home Office will need evidence of the child’s identity and residence in the UK prior to 31 December 2020. The same rules apply for children as they do for adults. Letters or certificates from schools, colleges, universities; cards or letters from GPs, hospitals or other healthcare professionals confirming appointments; letters from a government department, public service or charity; and used travel tickets can all be used to evidence residence.

What if the child has a criminal record?

We recommend you seek legal advice before applying. 

What if the child doesn’t have a valid passport or identity card?

The Home Office guidance states that alternative evidence of identity and nationality may be accepted if “the applicant cannot obtain or produce the required document due to circumstances beyond their control or due to compelling practical or compassionate reasons”.

You should call the EU Settlement Resolution Centre on 0300 123 7379 to discuss the situation and request a paper application if there is no way of obtaining or renewing the document.

You must continue to try to obtain a passport or national ID document for the child as the Home Office may check what has been done to progress the application for ID after the EUSS application has been made.

Can my child get British citizenship?

The children of EU, EEA and Swiss citizens living in the UK may be eligible to become a British citizen, even if their parents are not British citizens themselves. If a child was born in the UK, and at least one of the child’s parents has settled status or Indefinite Leave to Remain, the child may be eligible for British citizenship. Please seek further legal advice if this might be the case.

However do not delay an application to the EUSS. The application for citizenship is a lengthy one and you can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme for your child without affecting their possible entitlement for British Citizenship.

If you have Settled Status and you are planning to give birth abroad, we recommend that you seek legal advice before traveling as this may affect your child’s entitlement to British Citizenship.

I'm stuck, or need further legal advice. Where can I get help?

The UK government runs the EU Settlement Scheme Resolution Centre, which can help you with your EUSS application. You can contact them online here: https://eu-settled-status-enquiries.service.gov.uk/ Alternatively you can call them on the following numbers:

From within the UK: 0300 123 7379
Monday to Friday (excluding bank holidays), 8am to 8pm
Saturday and Sunday, 9:30am to 4:30pm
You can find out more about call charges here: https://www.gov.uk/call-charges

From outside the UK: +44 (0)203 080 0010
Monday to Friday (excluding bank holidays), 8am to 8pm
Saturday and Sunday, 9:30am to 4:30pm

Settled is here for you if you require further help with your EU Settlement Scheme issue. We provide free, mulltilingual advice, accredited by the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC).

Please call us on 0330 223 5336 or email [email protected]

We’re here to help you with your Settled Status to remain in the UK. We have 100 volunteers on hand who can provide advice in all EU lanaguages.

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