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UK Government Accused of Leaving EU Citizens on Limbo Over Post-Brexit Residence Status

Some European Union nationals who have failed to prove that they have applied for residence status in Britain even though they settled in the UK  before the Brexit transition period risk losing their jobs, homes, and access to other public services.

According to Politico, authorities in the UK  are being accused of breaching the Brexit rules by failing to issue EU citizens vital paperwork rapidly they need in order for their rights to be protected, SchengenVisaInfo.com reports.

The Withdrawal Agreement reached by the UK and EU authorities stressed that “a certificate of application for the residence status shall be issued immediately.”

The matter is expected to be discussed during the meeting of the EU-UK Specialised Committee on Citizens’ Rights on Monday.

According to Politico, the UK’s Home Office is working through many applications submitted on paper, which usually takes more time than online applications to be resolved.

The department has stressed that they need to check applicants’ identities before issuing them application certificates. However, the director of policy at the3million lobby group, Luke Piper, said that the organization is offering help to applicants who have been waiting for a certificate since before the summer.

“They say that they need to confirm people’s identities before sending a certificate, but this is not what the agreement says. It is a pretty clear breach of the agreement,” Piper pointed out in this regard.

Since the UK is no longer part of the EU and the transition period has ended, citizens of both territories are subject to new rules.

Since October 1, all European citizens, including those from Switzerland, Iceland, and Norway, have been obliged to present their passports when planning to enter the UK. However, there have been some exemptions applied in this regard.

Some EU citizens who applied for the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) previously faced difficulties after applying late for such a scheme. However, the Home Office said that it would continue to support people who want to continue to remain in Britain. In addition, the Office stressed that all EU countries’ citizens, together with their family members who applied late for the EUSS, would have their rights protected temporarily.

On the other hand, the United Kingdom’s Parliament Justice and Home Affairs Committee addressed a letter to the Home Secretary Priti Patel regarding the new rules of travel that would be applied to Britons when travelling to EU countries from this year.

The letter also raised the issue of the EU systems – the European Travel Information and Authorisation System (ETIAS) and the Entry/Exit System (EES)  that are expected to become functional this year and will also affect British travellers.

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