The uncertainty of Brexit for EU nationals and businesses

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Brexit in business

It has recently been reported that the Home Office plans to recruit an additional 1200 staff to help process the applications of nearly 3 million EU nationals currently resident in the UK who may wish to take up permanent residency here as a result of Brexit.

With todays agreement on stage 1 of the Brexit negotiations between the European Commission and the UK Government, talks will now move to more detailed discussions of what the future relationship between the two parties will look like. Already the CBI has called for more clarity for business. Many of our clients are currently concerned with retaining in the UK their highly skilled EU national employees already here and playing an important role within their business.

‘Brexit has created uncertainty for businesses and individuals alike’ says Neil Bothams, CEO of Santa Fe Relocation Europe, ‘and this is particularly the case in the field of Immigration. Some clients are seeking cost effective solutions to ensure they retain EU nationals so that the key skills that they have already heavily invested in building remain available to them’.

Generally speaking, an EU national who has already had 5 years residence in the UK may apply for permanent residency now. It is unlikely this will change until the final Brexit negotiations are complete and some form of agreement reached.

To reduce any anxieties individuals have about the final Brexit settlement, we have been advising those individuals who already satisfy the immigration requirements of permanent residency, to apply at this stage. None of this would prevent a person relocating to a third country at some point in the future but it does secure their future in the UK once granted.

The Immigration Law Practitioners Association, in evidence to the current Home Affairs Select Committee enquiry on Brexit has submitted that it does not believe that the Home Office systems and process are sufficiently streamlined to deal with enforcing the Immigration system in post Brexit Britain.

Further concerns have been raised as to whether 1200 extra staff, once recruited and trained will be sufficient to process the likely number of applications if and when Britain leaves the EU. It is likely that at that point, there will be extremely long delays as the Home Office receives large numbers of applications. Another reason to support our advice, for qualified individuals or forward thinking organisations to apply for permanent residency now.

Santa Fe Immigration are members of the UK Immigration Law Practitioners Association and our UK Immigration professionals are licensed by the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner.

Our unique mix of immigration lawyers, immigration experts and former visa and immigration officials give us an unrivalled insight into all aspects of UK Immigration ensuring our clients receive the very best advice and support.

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