You do not need a derivative residence card if you’re living in the UK, but it can:

  • help you re-enter the country quicker when you come back from abroad
  • show employers you’re allowed to work in the UK
  • show relevant authorities (for example your local council) that you’re allowed to live in the UK

There will be no change to the rights and status of EU citizens currently living in the UK until 30 June 2021. You and your family can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK.

You’re eligible for a derivative residence card if you’re living in the UK and you’re one of the following:

  • the primary carer of someone who has the right to live in the UK
  • the primary carer’s child
  • the child of a former worker from the European Economic Area (EEA) and you’re at school, college or university in the UK

Being a ‘primary carer’ means you’re someone’s main carer, or you share the responsibility with someone else at least equally, and you’re their direct relative or legal guardian.

You cannot apply if you’re outside the UK - apply for an EEA family permit instead.


It costs £65 to apply.

How long you can stay

You can continue living in the UK for as long as you’re eligible, for example for as long the person you’re caring for lives in the UK.

What you cannot do

You cannot count time spent in the UK with a derivative right of residence towards applying for permanent residence in the UK.

Get more information on derivative rights of residence.