Decisions regarding settled status potentially ‘rushed’ due to application volumes
30 September 2019
As the 31st October rapidly approaches, and with the UK possibly leaving the EU, People Management reports that a top immigration law organisation has confirmed that a surge in applications for settled status could affect the validity of the resulting decisions, due to stringent deadlines.
Jonathan Beech, MD at Migrate UK, has commented that ‘there is a current backlog of over 150,000 cases.’ This volume of applications is putting immense amounts of pressure on decisions and it has been suggested that the more temporary pre-settled status is an ‘easy win’ for the government.
The Home Office created the UK Settled Status Scheme to protect EU citizens and their families living in the UK prior to Brexit that have continually resided here for a minimum period of five years. Those granted settled status will be given indefinite leave to remain in the UK post-Brexit.
Conversely, a pre-settled status only allows for five years of residency within the UK from the date status was granted. Pre-settled status is given to those where the ongoing five years residency pre-Brexit has not been met or cannot be validated. This can happen where further information is required from applicants, due to a lack of data held by varying government sources. Pre-settled status is being awarded to meet deadlines, as opposed to thorough and full investigations relating to individual situations being carried out. To those EU citizens who are applying, the outcome of the decision is of the utmost importance to their lives and so it is imperative that the correct judgement is made.
These concerns are further reiterated by the fact that the majority of recruiters admit that they do not feel completely and correctly informed in relation to the settled status scheme. There also appears to be a lack of understanding from employers, in terms of post-Brexit immigration laws which could affect existing workforces.
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