The Commons Home Affairs Committee said technical issues had ‘blighted’ the scheme with some struggling to navigate the online application system. MPS were not happy with the fact that European residents only get legal status post Brexit if they apply to it. Therefore, they need to take a active step, those who don’t do anything become undocumented migrants.
EU Citizens who apply don’t even get a document that they can show to employers, landlords, hospitals etc. Proof of settled status is digital. The Committee recommends issuing a hard copy residence document.
The committee also recommends that the Home Office:
- Answer the questions raised by campaign group the 3 million over a year ago
- Make calls to the Settlement Scheme helpline free
- Clarify how and when hostile environment measures will be applied to EU citizens
- “Clarify the legal standing of EU citizens, in the period between Brexit and the deadline, who have not yet applied to or completed the Settlement Scheme”
- Train caseworkers in how to support vulnerable applicants
- Actively help vulnerable people who don’t have evidence of UK residence to seek it out
- Target children, for example by prompting people during the application process to apply on behalf of any kids
- Clarify how people will “graduate” from pre-settled to full settled status and take responsibility for reminding them to apply for the upgrade.
If you require assistance with applying for the EU Settlement Scheme, please contact immigration team: firstname.lastname@example.org