Skip to main content

European settlement scheme

When the UK leaves the EU the European treaty rights for free movement of people will no longer apply which means that every European national, including children, living in the UK must ratify their immigration status to ensure that they are legally able to stay.

You need settled status to ensure you are entitled to access the services you need in the future, including :

  • The right to live here
  • Work here 
  • Access public services such as:
    • healthcare
    • education
    • benefits

Check how Brexit will affect your personal situation.

Who should apply

The UK government has reached an agreement with the EU that will protect the rights of EU citizens and their family members living in the UK. It has also reached an agreement with Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein and a separate agreement with Switzerland.

If you are a national of the European Union, European Economic Area, or a citizen of Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Switzerland living in the UK, you can apply for settled or pre-settled status.

Which status you get will depend on how long you have been living in the UK when you apply. 

If you have been a resident in the UK for more than 5 continuous years when you apply, you will be eligible for settled status.

If you have been a resident for less than 5 years when you apply, you will be eligible for pre-settled status.

  • If the UK leaves the EU with a deal, you will have until 30 June 2021 to apply for either settled or pre-settled status.
  • If the UK leaves the EU without a deal, you will need to be living in the UK before it leaves the EU to apply. The deadline for applying will be 31 December 2020.

You do not need to apply if you have indefinite leave to remain or enter, or you are an Irish citizen, but you can if you want to.

Non-EU family members

Non-EU family members living in the UK by 31 December 2020 are eligible to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme (This includes those with a UK permanent residence document). Your close family members that are not living in the UK by 31 December 2020 will be able to join you in the UK at any point in the future, as long as the relationship still exists. Children born or adopted after 31 December 2020, and future dependants, will also have their rights protected.

How to apply

Full details of who can apply can be found on the GOV.UK website Apply to the EU Settlement Scheme.

Cost of applying for EU settlement

One part of the application process asks you to use a free App to scan your ID documents in order to verify your immigration status. If you are able to scan your own documents for this part of the process or you are willing to post your passport, ID card or Biometric Resident Permit (BRP) to the Home Office, then applying for EU Settlement is free of charge. The EU Exit: ID Document Check App (available on Google Play or the Apple Store) must be downloaded onto an Android smartphone or tablet or an iPhone 8 or above. The EU Exit: ID Document Check App will also be available for the iPhone 7 and iPhone 7 Plus following an upcoming iOS software update

  • Check whether your device is compatible and find out how to use the EU Exit: ID Document Check App
  • You can use a friend or family members' smartphone device. There are no security or privacy issues doing this because no personal data can be transferred to the person's phone

If you cannot use the free EU Exit: ID document check app

If you are unable to use the free EU Settlement Scheme's App because, for example,

  • You do not have access to an android phone or newer generation of iPhone, or
  • You do not wish to post your passport or UK-issued Biometric Resident Permit (BRP) to the Home Office for verification

then you can pay to use our ID Document Scanning Service at Festival House on Blackpool Promenade or other locations offering biometric ID document scanning.

Blackpool's ID document scanning service


We charge £14 per applicant to use the service. This fee has been set by the Home Office. You can pay on the day using cash or a credit or debit card.


We offer a drop-in session on Fridays between 10.00am and 2.45pm. There is no need to book an appointment.


Festival House
People’s Promenade

Make sure to come in before you start your application with the Home Office. If you have already started the application process we will not be able to help you.

What to bring to your ID scanning appointment

 Only the following ID documents can be checked by us:

  • Your current valid biometric EU, EEA or Swiss passport or a valid UK-issued Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) for family members of an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen
  • A mobile phone that can receive text messages
  • A valid email address
  • The payment of £14 per applicant

We will hand your ID documents back to you - there is no need to leave them with us. After submitting your information, you will receive an email with a link to complete an online application. This should be completed within the timescale specified. If not, you may have to present your ID documents for verification again.

Help to complete the EU settlement online application form

Assisted digital service: UK visas and immigration (UKVI)

Many libraries offer assisted digital support to those who are having difficulty navigating the GOV.UK website or in using the EU Exit: ID Document Check App, but currently not any of the Blackpool libraries. Lancashire County Council libraries are part of the scheme and this free service is available at St Annes, Ormskirk, Rawtenstall, Colne, Morecambe, Preston Harris and Burnley libraries.

You will need to take along an Android smartphone or tablet or an iPhone 8 or above to use this service.

To find out if you can access the assisted digital support scheme, you will need to contact We Are Digital, who will assess your eligibility and make a booking with one of these libraries.

Contact We Are Digital between 9.00am and 6.00pm, Mondays to Fridays or between 9.00am and 4.00pm on Saturdays by calling 03333 445 675 or texting the word “VISA” to 07537 416 944.

You cannot get help from the assisted digital service if you need immigration advice (for example, advice on which immigration form you need to complete) or you need an update on the progress of an immigration application you have already submitted.

Find out at GOV.UK how to access the Assisted Digital support scheme

What happens next

The Home Office will contact you to let you know if you have been successful in applying for settled or pre-settled status.