Over 10% of our staff at the university come from EU countries other than the UK. The university is committed to ensuring that our colleagues from the EU and around the world continue to feel welcome.

In recent months the UK government has published additional information on its plans for securing the status of EU citizens living in the UK. A full summary of the UK government's position can be found here and we encourage our staff who are EU citizens from countries other than the UK to sign up to the government's email updates for ongoing information.

The UK government has consistently stated that its "first priority in negotiations with the EU is to secure the status of EU citizens living in the UK, and UK nationals living in the EU". As confirmed in a recent technical note, the final settlement for EU citizens' rights will be determined by the Withdrawal Treaty currently under negotiation between the UK and EU. The citizens' rights chapter of this agreement will be incorporated into UK law. The government expects that this will also cover the rights of citizens of the non-EU states of Norway, Iceland, Lichtenstein and Switzerland. Irish citizens' rights in Britain will continue to be guaranteed by the Ireland Act 1949 and thus no action will be required from Irish citizens.  

The UK government's present offer for non-British or Irish EU citizens is as follows:

  • Those who have been continuously living here for 5 years will be able to apply to stay indefinitely by getting 'settled status'. That means these citizens will be free to live here, have access to public funds and services and go on to apply for British citizenship.
  • Those who arrived before an agreed cut-off date (which will be no earlier than 29th March 2019), but won't have been here for 5 years when we leave the EU, will be able to apply to stay for 'temporary status' until they have reached the 5 year threshold. They can then also apply for settled status.
  • Family dependants who are living with, or join, EU citizens in the UK before the UK's exit will also be able to apply for settled status after 5 years in the UK.

The government has issued assurance that a new "streamlined, user-friendly, digital application process" will be designed to administer applications for settled status. It has also clarified that EU citizens and their families will be given roughly two years after the UK's exit from the EU to make an application.

A technical note issued in November 2017 clarifies that the only likely reasons for being refused settled status are if an individual does not fall within the scope of the agreement, or on very particular criminality or security grounds (which are unlikely to apply to University of Greenwich staff).

The government has made it clear that, as of 17th November 2017, "there is no need for EU citizens living in the UK to do anything now, including applying for a permanent residence document" and that "here will be no change to the status of EU citizens living in the UK while the UK remains in the EU".

The University will continue to monitor the UK government's position on the status of EU citizens in the UK and will provide as much support as it can to staff who might need to apply for settled status in the future.  Our HR Team will provide further guidance and advice once the position is clearer.