Late applications under the EU Settlement Scheme ('EUSS')

20 December 2022 | Applicable law: England and Wales | 3 minute read

EUSS Application deadlines

For EU, EEA and Swiss citizens resident in the UK by 31 December 2020, the deadline for applications to be made to the EUSS was 30 June 2021.

Consequences of missing the deadline

EU, EEA or Swiss citizens and their family members who were resident in the UK by 31 December 2020 but did not make an EUSS application before the deadline, are no longer covered by EU free movement laws and are not protected under UK law. This includes their right to live, work, study, access benefits and access services in the UK ceasing until such time as it is recognised with a grant of time-limited permission ('pre-settled status') or indefinite leave to remain in/ enter the UK ('settled status') under the EUSS.

Where EU/Swiss nationals and their family members do not secure pre-settled or settled status and continue living in the UK, they are likely to encounter difficulties in securing or maintaining employment, a bank account, driving licence, renting a property or accessing free healthcare.

In addition, these individuals travelling into the UK without EUSS permission are likely to experience increased scrutiny by UK border officials resulting in delays and questioning at the airport, refused admission, or admission in a capacity which prohibits work, study or receiving medical treatment.


Those awaiting the outcome of an EUSS application submitted by 30 June 2021 are still entitled to free healthcare, subject to the ordinary residence test, until receiving the outcome of their application. 

Late applicants may receive free NHS healthcare from the date of the Home Office acknowledgement of their application until receiving the decision, and beyond this if permission is granted. 

EU, EEA or Swiss citizens or their family members without a valid immigration status may be charged for NHS healthcare, unless classed as emergency treatment. 

Late applications

The Home Office accepts late applications. Caseworkers are instructed to give applicants ‘the benefit of any doubt’ in considering whether there are reasonable grounds for the applicant's delay in making their application. However, applicants are expected to provide documentary evidence of residence in the UK for the relevant period of residence and evidence substantiating the reasons for the delay in applying beyond the deadline with their applications.

You should first check your eligibility to apply for the EUSS. Eligible applicants should submit an application as soon as possible.

The following individuals do not need to apply to the EUSS:

  • EEA/Swiss nationals who have naturalised as British citizens;
  • EEA/Swiss nationals and their relatives who hold indefinite leave to remain in the UK (ILR) or indefinite leave to enter the UK (ILE); and
  • Irish citizens. 

Individuals who hold current UK immigration permission in another immigration category or who are overseas but are eligible by virtue of a qualifying relationship to an EEA/Swiss national who holds pre-settled or settled status are not considered to be late applicants if they apply under the EUSS. 

EUSS Family Permits

Applications under the EUSS are not permitted from relatives of EEA/Swiss nationals in the UK as visitors; they must first apply for a short term 'EUSS Family Permit' prior to travel to the UK, then apply under the EUSS within three months of arrival in the UK. 

If you would like to make an EUSS application or would like advice on your, a family member's or worker's eligibility, please contact Nicolette Bostock or Tracy Evlogidis

This document (and any information accessed through links in this document) is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from any action as a result of the contents of this document.


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