May offers EU citizens in UK chance to build up citizenship rights

Published:  23 Jun at 6 PM
Want to get involved? Become a Featured Expat and take our interview.
Become a Local Expert and contribute articles.
Get in touch today!
Tagged: USA, UK, Citizenship, Euro, England
Billed as a ‘generous offer’, Theresa May’s Brexit statement on EU nationals in the UK gives those arriving lawfully before June 2019 the chance to build up similar rights to British citizens.

The right to work and the right to claim healthcare and benefits will be offered to EU expats already in the UK and those who arrive before the Brexit divorce is final, provided they have built up five years of UK residence. , According to Theresa May’s speech at an EU leaders’ summit in Brussels, arrivals during a subsequent grace period after Brexit is finalised as well as those already in Britain will be allowed the chance to be included in a special category of ‘settled status'.

May’s offer is dependent on a reciprocal deal on the rights of the 1.2 million UK expats living in EU member states, and falls short of the EU’s requirement that all its citizens in the UK should automatically retain EU rights in perpetuity. During her speech, the PM insisted she did not want to see families split up or EU citizens in the UK forced to repatriate to their home countries. The stumbling block in May’s statement is her refusal to agree to the EU’s demand that the European Court of Justice become the guarantor of any rights.

Although the government is willing to enshrine the rights in British law, making them enforceable in the courts, May’s stance on the European Court of Justice is that it’s not wanted on voyage. Media reports state May’s proposal was well received by the EU as a reasonable offer, although no discussion on its finer points has yet taken place and the offer is due to be reviewed by the EU’s negotiating team.

Essentially, Angela Merkel considers May’s proposal as a ‘good start’ to the divorce proceedings, but adds there are many other issues yet to be discussed. Campaigners including founder of the 3million group Nicolas Hatton were less than impressed, and those campaigning for the rights of UK citizens in Europe have met with EU chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier who ‘listened to their proposals’. Jane Golding, a UK lawyer at present living in Berlin, told the media the EU had already promised full rights to UK expats in Europe, adding the British government should immediately reciprocate.
Like this news?

Comments » No published comments just yet for this article...

Feel free to have your say on this item. Go on... be the first!

Tell us Your Thoughts On This Piece:

Your Name *
Email * (not published, needs verification one time only)
  • Facebook
  • Follow us on Twitter
  • RSS feed
  • Facebook

Latest Headlines

News Links

News Archive