Information for EU/EEA/SWISS Students regarding BREXIT and Immigration
What do I need to know about my immigration status after 1st January 2021
From 1st January 2021 it will be mandatory for new arrivals to the UK to apply for immigration to either come to, or remain, in the UK. The UKVI have produced a leaflet to help explain the new process for EU students under their incoming PBS Immigration System.
Please note: if you need to quarantine on arrival as per the gov.wales information here, please ensure that you are visiting the University's FAQs regarding quarantine (towards the bottom of the page). That is the central information point and will be updated as and when necessary.
We recommend that all students get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) if they can. Having that document may impact on your smoothly accessing UK healthcare, future eligibility under some UK immigration routes (e.g. Citizenship) and aiding eligibility for a refund of any Immigration Health Surcharge fees paid under the Student Route.
Current/continuing students who have already applied for/been granted settled or pre settled status under the European Settlement Scheme (EUSS) will be able to use that status for continuing study, please see the Proving your immigration status section below.
If you have made an application under the EUSS but not yet received a decision, whether we can enrol you depends on where you made the application from.
If you are in the UK and made the application here, we will be able to enrol you whilst your application is pending.
If you are overseas and made the application whilst overseas, you should wait for the EUSS decision before travelling. This is because if you enter the UK before you have EUSS status, you may be classed as a Visitor on entry and, as a Visitor, the University will not be able to enrol you on your course. If you need to travel before a decison is made, you will need to gain alternative immigration to be able to study but your EUSS application will then automatically be cancelled. Please see the section for Summer 21 and onwards below for guidance aroundmaking alternative immigtaion applications.
Please note: we are currently seeking final clarification on the position of students, who have pending overseas EUSS applications, with the UKVI. If advice should change, we will update infoormation here. So please check back regularly.
If you were living in the UK prior to December 31st 2020 but missed the 30th June 2021 deadline to apply for the EUSS, you may still be eligible to apply. Please see the Late EUSS applications section below.
New students should see the Summer 21 and onwards section below.
If you have pre-settled EUSS and wish to switch this to settled status, full guidance around the EUSS and the application process can be found on our EUSS pages.
If you are an EU/EEA or Swiss national due to start your course or continue your course after July 2021 you will need to apply for the correct immigration to do so. Do not assume you can make a visa application from within the UK- read the information below carefully.
I have already applied for the European Settlement Scheme (EUSS) and/or received pre settled or settled status.
If you have already been granted immigration permission under the EUSS, you can use this status to start or continue your course from summer 21 onwards. If you have made this application from overseas, but not yet received a decision, UKVI have confirmed that you will be able to travel to the UK and wait for your decision here.
However, you should be aware that if your application is subsequently refused, you will need to be suspended from your course until you have regulated your immigration permission. You may need to go home to do this.
If you are coming back into the UK prior to EUSS decision, to help you pass through the UK border as smoothly as possible, we recommend that you carry the same passport or ID card that you used to make your EU Settlement Scheme application and have your email confirmation or a certificate of application from the Home Office to hand that shows you have submitted an application to the Scheme
I have not applied for the EUSS and do not hold a UK visa under any other immigration category
If you do not have EUSS (or an alternative visa which allows you to study in the UK), you will need to get immigration permission to study in the UK and this may be before you travel. Which visa you need depends on the length of your course as per the information below:
Courses, Exchange or Visit Programme of less than 6 months
If you are studying a course that is 6 months or less, you will be able to enrol as a Standard Visitor (this is what you will be stamped in as if you get immigration as you go through Port of Entry (at the airport). You will need to leave the UK within 6 months of being stamped in.
Students who do not have EUSS status or who have come into the UK on a Visitor status (including being stamped in on Entry to the UK) will need an EHIC and/or private healthcare insurance.
There are some companies that offer specific insurance plans for international students and families so it may be worth having a look at those. Two of these are Insure2Study Overseas or Endsleigh Insurance though you can use any provider you wish. You should also be aware that you cannot work as a Standard Visitor (that includes work placements and work experience).
Courses, Exchange or Visit Programme of more than 6 months
If you are coming to study a course of more than 6 months, you will need to apply for a Student Route visa and have received your decision before you travel to the UK. You cannot come to the UK, enter as a Visitor and apply from here. If you try and do this, you will not be able to enrol and you will have to go home and regulate your immigration situation.
We have comprehensive information on Making a Student Visa application from overseas to help you with this, including a Differentiation Leaflet outlining funds and documents needed. This route is subject to the compulsory Immigration Health Surcharge, which allows access to the National Health Service and so students should not need private health insurance. Students are usually eligible to work part time (20 hours per week).
Fees and Funding
As of 31st May 2019, the Welsh government confirmed that EU students who start their course in the 2020/21 academic year would be covered by legislation stating that they would be liable for the same fees as UK home students. They will also be eligible to receive grants and/or loans from Student Finance Wales (SFW), subject to existing criteria (you can check the criteria via the UKCISA links below). In a similar way to those who started in 2019/20, this legislation would cover students for their whole course.
EU students starting their studies on or after 1 August 2021 must have settled or pre-settled status in the UK under the EU Settlement Scheme to receive student finance.
There is no blanket eligibility for EEA and Swiss students to access home fee status/financial support. Though some may be dependant on their individual situation.
The UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) hold comprehensive information on Fee Status and Government Student Support which will help you to more fully understand if you are eligible for one or both of those things. You can also contact the University's Money@CampusLife team who will help you to work out your own situation.
If you were living in the UK by 31st December 2020 but have not made an application to the EU Settlement Scheme before the deadline of 30th June 2021 you can make a late application if you have ‘reasonable grounds’.
The definition of ‘reasonably grounds’ is very broad and includes situations where you did not realise that you needed to make an application by the deadline. Pages 31-48 of EU settlement Scheme caseworker guidance has a non-exhaustive examples of reasons.
Further information about late applications can be found on the Gov.Uk website here
If you are currently in the UK and were living in the UK before 31st December (even if you have been outside for a substantial amount of time between then and now) it may be worth you making an EUSS application as soon as possible. As long as you have made an EUSS application, you should be able to provide your application confirmation as evidence for enrolment during the University Right to Study check. Please see our Guidance on Making an EUSS application.
If you are currently outside the UK and were living in the UK before 31st December (even if you have been outside for a substantial amount of time between then and now) it may be worth you making an EUSS application as soon as possible. UKVI have confirmed that you will be able to travel to the UK and wait for your decision here.
However, you should be aware that if your application is subsequently refused, you will need to be suspended from your course until you have regulated your immigration permission. You may need to go home to do this. You may need to check with your College whether it is possible for you to arrive late on your course. Please see our Guidance on Making an EUSS application if you will be making an application.
If you do need to travel before EUSS decision, you will have to get alternative immigration permission to study, as per the ‘Students who are starting (or continuing courses) from Summer 21 onwards’ section above. You should be aware that if you make an alternative immigration application, any EUSS application you have pending will be cancelled. Please think carefully about timings and seek advice from International@CampusLife if necessary.
Please note: We are currently seeking absolute clarification, around the status of students with EUSS applications pending overseas, from the UKVI and if advice changes, it will be updated here.
Home Office processing times for EUSS applications are taking a long time and for this reason you should apply as soon as possible if you realise that you have missed a 30th June deadline.
Successful applicants to the EUSS, as well as student who apply for a Student Route visa using the UK Immigration: ID check app, will receive confirmation of digital proof of their status via an email. They will not get a physical document or receive a biometric residence card.
Proving your status after it is granted
Under the digital immigration cpnfirmation processes, you will not receive physical evidence (a vignette or visa card) to prove that you have been granted EUSS pre-settled/settled status or a Student Route visa. It is currently not possible to get physical proof for EUSS and the government recently voted not to provide this and to expand this type of digital leave into other categories for EEA/Swiss nationals.
You will receive an email to state the Home Office decision on your application and you should read this carefully and then save it somewhere secure.
Post decision, you will continue to be able to get into your personal account on the Home Office system (detailed in your decision email) by inputting your personal details (including your passport number). Once in your account you can generate a verification code. This code can be shared with employers, the University or anyone else who needs to check your right to work/study or reside in the UK. The code only lasts 30 days but you can generate as many as necessary. This code can then be entered into the Home Office system by a 3rd party in order to verify your immigration status.
When might I need to provide my status code?
You may be asked to prove your status in the UK in the following situations:
• Enrolling on a course of study
• Accessing the National Health Service (we also recommend that you always get a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) )
• Applying for a job
• Renting accommodation
• Applying for a bank account or mortgage
If you are applying for a job, it might be worth mentioning that you have been granted permission to live/work/study in the UK under the European Settlement Scheme/Student Route, and can provide an evidence code, within your application. This may help to reassure employers that you have the ongoing right to work.
Please note: it is very important that you keep your details, such as your current passport number, up to date on the Home Office system. Failure to do so may mean that you have difficulty getting back into your account to generate verification codes.
This section has information regarding the family members of EU/EEA/Swiss citizens
Close family members who were not living in the UK by 31 December 2020 will still be able to join their EU family member in the UK in the future, as long as the relationship still exists and that family member has been granted settled or pre settled status under the EUSS. Children born or adopted after 31 December 2020 and future dependants, will also have their rights protected. For further information about family members under the EUSS scheme please see the information here.
Family members for non EUSS status holders
If you do not have EUSS status, your ability to bring dependants to the UK will depend on what immigration you do have.
If you will be studying on a Student route visa, you will be eligible to bring dependants with your based on current requirements and should see our Information for Families to help guide you.
If you will be studying on a Short Term Student visa or a Standard Visit visa you will not be eligible to bring dependants with you and they would have to apply for immigration under their own route (potentially as a Standard visitor- this does not allow work, access to the National Health Service or schooling).
If you will be entering/remaining in the UK on another immigration category please email International@CampusLife to see whether they can help you.
Information for those already holding Permanent Residency or Indefinite Leave to Enter/Remain (ILE/R)
What you must do
For those with Permanent Residency (to check whether your immigration status is classed as permanent residency, please see the relevant section on the Gov.uk website).
To continue living in the UK after 30 June 2021 you must have either:
- applied to the EU Settlement Scheme - you will not have to prove you have 5 years’ continuous residence
- applied for citizenship before 30 June 2021
For those with Indefinite Leave to Enter or Remain
You will usually have applied for indefinite leave to enter or remain. You’ll have a stamp in your passport or a letter from the Home Office. You could also have a ‘vignette’ (sticker) or a biometric residence permit (visa card).
You can continue to live in the UK without applying to the EU Settlement Scheme if you have indefinite leave to enter or remain in the UK.
Further information can be found on the Gov.uk website.