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This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/eu-settlement-scheme-community-leaders-toolkit/toolkit-introduction-how-to-use-the-local-authorities-toolkit-in-your-community-or-network
Introduction: supporting EU citizens
EU Settlement Scheme
- EU citizens and their family members (including children) can now apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK
- the EU Settlement Scheme allows EU citizens and their family members to the immigration status they need to continue to live, work and study in the UK. This status means they will continue to be eligible for public services, such as healthcare and schools, as well as public funds and pensions
- the online application form can be accessed online using a computer, tablet or mobile phone. There are three key parts to the application: identity, residence in the UK, and criminality
Help us help EU citizens
- as a local authority, you are a major provider of information affecting people’s everyday lives and you are often the first point of contact for a diverse range of people on many important issues. You can help provide assistance to those EU citizens who need support to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme – particularly EU citizens that are most vulnerable and hard-to-reach
- we value your strong networks and hope you will work in collaboration with us to make sure EU citizens in your area are informed about the EU Settlement Scheme and how to apply
- this pack has been designed to provide you with helpful information and guidance about the EU Settlement Scheme
- you can support vulnerable or at-risk EU citizens by raising awareness and providing information, as well as signposting them to the appropriate support services to meet their needs
- further details on the additional materials that are available to you are provided in this pack
- EU Settlement Scheme guidance can be found at gov.uk/eu-settled-status
EU citizens used throughout refers to EEA and Swiss nationals, who are all eligible to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme.
Materials for you to use
We have provided suggestions for how you can use the communication materials in this toolkit.
|Toolkit item||Purpose||Recommended use|
|Local authorities: introduction pack||Helps you use the toolkit materials, outlines your role and the support available.||For local authorities’ information only.|
|Briefing information||Provides key information about the EU Settlement Scheme including support available.||Use in meetings and drop-in sessions with EU citizens about the EU Settlement Scheme.|
|Leaflet||Provides key information on what EU citizens need to do and the support available.||Distribute leaflets at community events and at local drop-in centres.|
|Poster||Raises awareness of important dates and actions.||Display in communal and public areas in your organisation and share with relevant organisations.|
EU Settlement Scheme overview (translated into all 23 EU languages, plus Norwegian and Icelandic)
|Provides key information and outlines application and support routes for applying to the EU Settlement Scheme.||Display in communal and public areas in your organisation and share within your communities and distribute at community events and local drop-in centres.|
|Digital and social media assets (e.g. animations and graphics)||Raises awareness and provides key information including how to make an application and videos of EU citizens’ stories.||Upload to internal portals, share via email and on social media accounts (e.g. Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn).|
Providing a service
Providing an assisted digital service
Support is available across the UK to those who require digital assistance to complete their application form.
We Are Digital, our digital provider, is offering an assisted digital service for those who do not have the appropriate skills, access or confidence to complete the online application form. Support is offered in the following ways:
- over the phone
- face-to-face support in a local centre
- in-home tutors
A number of local authorities across the UK have signed up to be a delivery partner of this service to provide face-to-face support in a local setting.
To find out if support to deliver this service is required in your area, please contact We Are Digital at HomeOffice@We-Are-Digital.co.uk.
Offering an ID document scanning service
As part of the application process applicants are able to prove their identity using the EU Exit: ID Document Check app, which is currently only available on Android devices.
The ID document scanning service offers applicants an alternative way to get their passport, national identity card or biometric residence card verified if they are unable to use the app or are struggling with this part of the application process.
As a local authority, you can sign up to provide this in-person service, providing access to an Android device for those who do not have one. A fee can be collected for each applicant you help by providing this service.
We would like local authorities across the UK to offer this service, particularly in areas with the largest EU populations. Training and assistance to set up the service is provided. A list of current locations offering this service is available on GOV.UK.
The service is operated within Registration Services, at the first tier of County Councils. If you are from a District Council, you can check if your County Council has already registered to offer this service.
If you are interested in providing this service, please contact email@example.com, the Vice Chair and London representative of the National Panel of Registration Services.
Office of the Immigration Service Commissioner (OISC) regulation
- all organisations providing immigration advice must have the appropriate OISC regulation level in line with the services they are providing.
- organisations do not necessarily need to be OISC regulated in order to get involved with providing help and support to EU citizens about the EU Settlement Scheme.
As a local authority, you can provide the following services without the need for regulation:
- providing the assisted digital service
- providing the ID scanning service
- making applications on behalf of looked after children for which a local authority has a care order, and holds parental responsibility
Grant funded organisations
The Home Office is providing up to £9 million of funding and support to voluntary and community sector (VCS) organisations who have successfully applied for EU Settlement Scheme Grant Funding. The awarded VCS organisations are supported to deliver practical assistance to vulnerable or at-risk EU citizens and their family members when applying to the EU Settlement Scheme.
We recommend you get in touch with grant funded organisations in your area to explore how you can work together to support EU citizens. These organisations will be an excellent resource in your area for making referrals, particularly in offering advice and application assistance to vulnerable EU citizens.
A full list of awarded organisations will be available on GOV.UK. You may also want to share the details of the grant funded organisations with EU citizens who might use their services.
Information on specific cases
Applying on behalf of EU looked after children, children in care and care leavers
Governments in the UK have confirmed that local authorities will make EU Settlement Scheme applications on behalf of their looked after children.
For other categories of children in care and care leavers, local authorities should inform relevant parties and support with applications as necessary.
The Home Office is directly engaging with local authorities, social workers, and those making applications on behalf of looked after children, children in care and care leavers to provide support and information.
We have established a series of teleconferences specifically addressing the needs of looked after children, children in care and care leavers. This provides an opportunity to hear the latest developments and issues or to raise issues or concerns.
If you would like to participate, or you have any questions, please contact your Director of children’s services.
In collaboration with children’s rights organisations we are committed to creating materials aimed directly at children and young people to provide information about the EU Settlement Scheme and how to apply.
These materials will be available soon and shared with you in due course.
You can also signpost to the information the government is providing at gov.uk/eu-settled-status.
Assisting adults with care and support needs
Adults with care and support needs includes adults in various care settings with a range of vulnerabilities.
To support adults with care and support needs the Home Office is directly engaging with a range of stakeholders, including the Local Government Association, the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services, the Office of the Public Guardian as well as representatives from voluntary and community sector organisations.
We recommend that you engage with your relevant service leads, cabinet members, local charities and community groups or representatives to explore opportunities to work together and assist adults with care and support needs in applying to the EU Settlement Scheme.
You can also signpost the information the government is providing at gov.uk/eu-settled-status.
Assisting those with no identity documents
We are aware that some EU citizens, or their family members, cannot provide evidence of their identity and nationality in the form of a passport, national identity card or biometric residence card.
In the first instance you should work with those individuals and their embassies to apply for a valid identity document.
The Home Office may accept alternative evidence of identity and nationality if EU citizens cannot produce the required documents, due to circumstances beyond their control or due to compelling practical or compassionate reasons.
Information for local authorities
The Home Office has set up various channels for you to access information about the EU Settlement Scheme.
- sign up to receive a regular Community Bulletin from the Home Office for updates on future engagement opportunities e.g. training events and teleconferences.
- attend local authorities’ teleconferences to stay informed with updates and support from the Home Office. Senior Officers within local authorities are sent invites to these teleconferences on a regular basis.
- view the community leader toolkit page on GOV.UK to download communication materials to share with EU citizens.
- access translated communication materials and guidance on GOV.UK. Alternative formats can also be requested
- if you have any questions about supporting EU citizens to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme you can contact the specific EU Settlement Scheme Resolution Centre number by calling 0300 790 0566. Find out about call charges.
EU Settlement Scheme guidance can be found at gov.uk/eu-settled-status.
Information for EU citizens
To support EU citizens in your community you can signpost the services below to access more information about the EU Settlement Scheme and to get assistance with their application.
Support is available if you need help to complete your application, including:
EU Settlement Scheme Resolution Centre
For individual questions about your application call 0300 123 7379. Find out about call charges.
You can also ask a question using the online submissions form.
This free service is available over the phone and in person if you do not have the appropriate access, skills or confidence to complete the online application form. Contact assisted digital by calling 03333 445 675. For information on Assisted Digital visit GOV.UK.
ID document scanning service
This service is available to complete the identity verification step if you do not have access to the EU Exit: ID Document Check app. There may be an administrative fee to use this service. For a list of ID document scanning locations, visit GOV.UK.
A list of grant funded community organisations providing EU Settlement Scheme support will be available on GOV.UK.
For more information on the EU Settlement Scheme, including the support available, visit gov.uk/eu-settled-status.