EU Settlement Scheme


The EU Settlement Scheme was introduced by the UK Government to safeguard EU citizens’ rights after Brexit. The scheme became fully operational on 30th March 2019, after an initial test phase which saw more than 200,000 applications being processed.

Applicants who have resided continuously in the UK for at least five years before making the application would be eligible for ‘settled status’ (indefinite leave to remain in the UK). Those with less than five years residence would be eligible for ‘pre-settled’ status (limited leave to remain) for five years to allow them to complete five years’ residence and become eligible for settled status.


Residence pre and post the grant of pre-settled status can be counted towards the five-year requirement for settled status.

Unlike the EEA free movement regime for EEA/Swiss nationals, ‘continuous residence’ under the EUSS is defined as ‘presence’ in the UK, as opposed to requiring the exercise of treaty rights through employment, self-employment, studies and self-sufficiency.


The Scottish Government have launched a Stay in Scotland campaign to ensure that all EU Citizens residing here understand that our government wants them to stay, and will support them to do so.

They have done this by:

* creating Stay in Scotland online resources – poster, leaflet, factsheet and two  toolkits: Stay in Scotland Publicity Materials

* sharing a link to the UK Government’s Assisted Digital Centres, which list the centres in Scotland: Assisted Digital Centres List

* sharing the link to the scanning centres for those who don’t have a device and don’t want to send their documents through the post:  Scanning Centres List

Please note that some of these centres will charge for this service

There is a concern that many people who will need to go through this process, will not do so, OR will leave it very late to apply. Many people may need support to navigate to process and the Scottish Government are asking that we all spread the word as widely as possible.