EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence
An EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence is a residence document issued to EEA nationals who have lived in the UK and exercised Treaty rights for a continuous period of 5 years or more. An EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence confirms a right of permanent residence in the UK.
In order to qualify for an EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence you will need to satisfy UK Visas and Immigration that:
You have lived in the UK continuously for five years;
You have exercised Treaty rights as a worker, self-employed person, student or self-sufficient person throughout the five year period;
Your exercise of Treaty rights was ‘genuine’;
You have not been absent from the UK for more than six months in any one year (except that you will be permitted one longer absence for an important reason, such as military service or pregnancy).
It is possible to obtain an EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence immediately, without having to wait for 5 years, if you have to stop working permanently because of either
(i) an accident or illness, and your husband, wife or civil partner is a British citizen; or
(ii) a work-related accident or illness that means you are entitled to a UK pension.
It is possible to obtain an EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence after 2 years if you have lived continuously in the UK for 2 years and have to stop working or being self-employed because of an accident or illness. You must be working or self-employed when you stop.
It is possible to obtain an EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence after 3 years if you:
Reach State Pension age (you must have been self-employed or worked continuously in the UK for 1 year beforehand);
Retire early (you must have worked continuously in the UK for 1 year beforehand);
Start work or self-employment in another EEA country (you must usually return to your UK home once a week, and have worked or been self-employed in the UK for 3 years continuously beforehand)
There is no legal requirement to obtain an EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence because the right of permanent residence exists as a matter of European Union law. However, an EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence acts as confirmation of your right of permanent residence in the UK and this will make it easier to re-enter the UK, prove your right to work and obtain various services. It is also necessary to obtain an EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence before an application can be made for Naturalisation as a British Citizen or if you want to sponsor your partner’s visa application under the Immigration Rules.
An EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence application can only be made from within the UK, and decisions are supposed to be made within six months.
You may be able to apply online for an EEA Document Certifying Permanent Residence. You can also add close or extended family members to your application.
You do not need to provide evidence for all your time spent in the UK. You can rely on, and provide evidence for, any continuous (5 year) period of qualifying residence.
If you are relying on a qualifying period of residence that ended more than 2 years ago you must also provide evidence that you have not spent more than 2 consecutive years outside the UK since the qualifying period ended. This is because permanent residence is lost if you have been outside the UK for 2 continuous years.
If you wish to obtain advice or legal assistance in respect of your immigration matter, we offer an affordable and confidential consultation at a fixed fee with and experienced immigration lawyer where we can answer your questions and explain the processes that will apply. Your consultation fees will be set off against your instructions to the firm if you go on to instruct us.
For more information or to book an initial consultation, please contact us.