EEA Residency Card Cuts Need for Family Permit
As of April 6th 2016 EU citizens with family members originating from outside the EEA have been permitted to enter and live in the UK along with those family members without the need for an EEA family permit. As long as the EEA national citizen is in possession of a valid residency card from another EEA nation, there is now no bar on their family member entering the UK – or any other EEA nation – on the basis of established free movement rights within the EEA.
The key ruling, which derived from a case brought by an Irish citizen, Sean McCarthy, and his Columbian wife seeking to move to the UK from Spain, states explicitly: “Member States are, in principle, required to recognise a residence card issued under Article 10 of Directive 2004/38, for the purposes of entry into their territory without a visa”.
Aside from the administrative inconvenience and delay which a visa application may entail, an EEA family permit allows:
- Quicker and easier re-entry to the UK if travelling abroad
- Employers to recognise the right to work in the UK
- Demonstration of entitlement to certain state benefits
The application process for an EU registration card is valid for five years and should take no more than six months to administer from the date of application.
The determination of ‘family member’ is not restricted to spouses and children alone. Grandchildren and grandparents as well as long term unmarried partners are all capable of fulfilling the terms of family membership, although in these cases documentary evidence of the status and duration of the relationship and any dependency – for example in the case of carers – may be required. In all cases a valid passport is required.
YDVISAS specialise in all visa categories and are specialist immigration lawyers in the UK. Please contact the expert team at YDVISAS, should you need any professional help with your visa application.