EU citizens living in Tamworth must apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to be able to continue living and working in the UK – and help is on hand for anyone who needs support with their application.
Changes in immigration legislation following Brexit mean that all EU, EEA and Swiss citizens residing in the UK before December 31, 2020, need to be granted ‘settled’ or ‘pre-settled’ status.
Applications to the EU Settlement Scheme must be submitted online before June 30, 2021 to enable residents to continue living and working in the UK beyond that date.
Tamworth Advice Centre, run by Citizens Advice Mid Mercia, has launched a new project to support any Tamworth residents who need help with their application.
Adan Hallam, EU Settlement Scheme Adviser of Citizens Advice Mid Mercia, said: “Just in Tamworth alone, we believe there are still approximately 1500 EU residents who have not yet applied to the scheme and it is incredibly important that they do so.
“We recognise that many of the most vulnerable people in society may not be sure they need to apply or how to apply, so we are here to provide them with that information to allow them to be confident in accessing the scheme themselves.
“And for those most in need, we will go through the application process with them so they can be confident they have applied in the correct manner and done everything they need to protect their rights.
“With the ongoing pandemic, we have done everything we can to ensure we are still accessible to clients, and have set up a dedicated EUSS Helpline Number – 01827 909101 – which is manned Monday-Friday, 9am to 5pm.
“We also have a dedicated EUSS email which we can be contacted on; firstname.lastname@example.org.
“In addition, we also have a form on our website at www.citizensadvicemidmercia.org.uk/euss/ which can be filled out if someone needs help.”
More than four million people have applied to the scheme so far and 98% have already been granted settled or pre-settled status. In the main, settled status applies to those who have been resident in the UK for five continuous years and pre-settled status applies to those who have been resident in the UK for less than five years. Those with pre-settled status can apply for settled status once they approach five continuous years of residency.
Full details on who needs to apply and eligibility criteria are available at www.gov.uk/eusettledstatus.
There’s also a helpful video on how to apply which can be viewed here: EU Settlement Scheme: how to apply – YouTube.
Cllr Michelle Cook, Cabinet member for Neighbourhoods, said: “I’d encourage any EU citizens living in Tamworth to submit their applications sooner rather than later and not leave it to the last minute. The process is fairly straightforward but you do need to get various documents and evidence together, so it’s worth getting started on it now if you haven’t already done so. It’s great that Tamworth Advice Centre staff are on hand to help, so if you’re not sure about any aspects of the process, please do take advantage of this service.”
Citizens Advice Mid Mercia is commissioned by Tamworth Borough Council to provide free, confidential and impartial advice services to the residents of Tamworth. Help is available on a range of issues including debt, welfare, benefits, housing, employment and more.
The service is currently operating digitally, with help available for people via online referrals, phone, email and the website. For more information, please visit www.tamworth.gov.uk/tamworth-advice-centre.