You can apply for a document to prove your right to live in the UK if you’re a citizen of a European Economic Area (EEA) country or Switzerland.
You’re usually eligible for a:
- registration certificate if you’ve lived in the UK for less than 5 years
- permanent residence document if you’ve lived in the UK for 5 years (or earlier in some situations - for example, if you retire)
You may also be eligible as the partner, child or family member of someone from the EEA or Switzerland.
Who needs to apply
You usually need a:
- registration certificate if you’re an extended family member of someone from the EEA or Switzerland
- permanent residence document to apply for British citizenship
You don’t need either document to live in the UK if you:
- are a ‘qualified person’ (you’re working, studying, self-employed, self-sufficient or looking for work)
- have a family member who is a qualified person
- have a retained right of residence
However, a document can:
- make it easier to claim certain benefits and services
- prove you have a right to live in the UK