If you stop working or start work in an EU country

You and your family members can get settled status with less than 5 years’ continuous residence in certain situations.

If you have to stop working

If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen you may be able to get settled status if you have to stop working or being self-employed because of an accident or illness (known as ‘permanent incapacity’).

The EEA includes the EU countries and also Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.

You may be able to get settled status if either:

  • you have lived continuously in the UK for the 2 years immediately beforehand
  • the permanent incapacity was the result of an accident at work or an occupational disease that entitles you to a pension from a UK institution

You can also get settled status if you’re married to or in a civil partnership with a British citizen.

If you’re the family member of an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen at the time they stopped working you may also be eligible for settled status.

If you reach State Pension age or retire early

If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen you may be able to get settled status if you reach State Pension age or retire early.

If you’re the family member of an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen at the time they reach State Pension age or retire early you may also be eligible for settled status.

If you reach State Pension age

If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, you can get settled status if you stopped working when you reached State Pension age and either:

  • you worked continuously or were self employed for 1 year beforehand and have lived continuously in the UK for 3 years
  • your spouse or civil partner is a British citizen

If you retire early

If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen you can get settled status if you retire early and either:

  • you worked continuously (for someone other than yourself) for 1 year beforehand and have lived continuously in the UK for 3 years
  • your spouse or civil partner is a British citizen

If you start work or self-employment in an EU country

If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen you can get settled status if you start work or self-employment in an EU country and you both:

  • have lived and worked or been self-employed in the UK continuously for 3 years beforehand
  • usually return to your UK home once a week

If you’re the family member of an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen at the time they start work or self-employment in an EU country you may also be eligible for settled status.

  1. Step 1 Check if you need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme

    You may need to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK.

    1. Check if you need to apply
  2. Step 2 Find out what status you’ll get

    You’ll get settled or pre-settled status depending on how long you’ve been living in the UK. This might affect when you choose to apply.

    1. Find out what you’ll get
  3. Step 3 Check what you’ll need to apply

  4. Step 4 Apply

    The deadline for applying is 30 June 2021.

    1. Apply to the EU Settlement Scheme
  5. Step 5 After you've applied

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