1. Overview

You may be able to apply for a derivative residence card if you’re the primary carer of someone who has the right to live in the UK or the primary carer’s child. You can also apply as the child of an European Economic Area (EEA) worker if you’re at school in the UK.

Check if you’re eligible.

A derivative residence card proves you have the right to live in the UK.

A ‘primary carer’ means you’re someone’s main carer - or you share the responsibility with someone else - and you’re their family or legal guardian.

You can only apply for a derivative residence card if you’re already living in the UK - you should apply for an EEA family permit instead if you’re applying from outside the UK.

How you can use the card

You don’t have to get a derivative residence card, 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, your local council for example, that you’re allowed to live in the UK


It costs £55 to apply.

How long you can stay

You can continue living in the UK for as long as you’re eligible - eg, the person you’re caring for will need to still be living in the UK, or in school or university.

What you can’t do

You can’t count time spent in the UK with a derivative right of residence toward applying for permanent residence in the UK.

Get more information on derivative rights of residence.