EU Citizens: Freedom Of Movement After Brexit

With the exit from the European Union quickly approaching, we’re frequently asked about the effect Brexit will have on EU citizens and more specifically the change we could see to EU workers rights. There will be a whole host of changes to workers rights post-Brexit, most of which isn’t set in stone and has been developed throughout the process. In this blog, we’ll take a look at freedom of movement and the effect leaving the EU will have on EU citizens and workers.

What is freedom of movement?

At the core of the EU are four pillars of freedom. Often called the ‘Four Freedoms’ these are the basis of the European Union. These are Freedom of Goods, Freedom of Services, Freedom of Capital and Freedom of Persons.

Freedom of movement is one of the core fundamentals of being in the European Union, coming under the ‘persons’ category. This is the principle that allows all EU citizens too;

  • Work within any EU member country without a workers permit.
  • Have permanent residence within that country for the purpose of working.
  • Be treated equally to all other workers, including nationals, allowing you to benefit from the same things such as tax advantages.
  • Continue to have permanent residence after completing work there.

What is happening, when will it happen?

Freedom of Movement will be officially ending within the UK due to Brexit. This will happen the same day we leave the European Union, although we’re not sure exactly when that will happen. 

What does this mean for workers?

Although the end of Freedom of Movement may sound scary, you’re unlikely to see a great deal of difference in your day to day lives. EU citizens will still be able to visit the UK for both short trips or longer holidays, just like normal, maybe with a few more checks here and there.

However, you will likely see some change in the arrangements for people looking to permanently reside, work or study in the UK. Exactly how this will change hasn’t been fully developed yet, but we do know the Government have been looking into an Australian like points-based immigration system

What should I do?

Although this may all sound scary, the Government are working as hard as possible to ensure the fairest and least disruptive arrangements are made. The introduction of the EU Settlement Scheme allows for EU citizens who want to stay in the UK to easily get the immigration status they need. It’s free and consists of three simple steps that are proving your identity, show you live in the UK and declare are criminal convictions.

If you’d like any more information or help on your citizenship, you can contact us today using our contact form here, or call 01482 212581.

Posted: Tue 10 Sep 2019
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