1. Overview

You may be able to apply for a derivative residence card if you’re living in the UK. You must be 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 an European Economic Area (EEA) worker if you’re at school 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’t apply if you’re outside the UK. You can apply for an EEA family permit instead.

How you can use the card

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

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 £65 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.