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Switching from pre-settled to settled status

If you were granted EU Settlement Domiciliary Regime, it is necessary to understand the procedure of switching to under-settled status, particularly, if you are going to live in the country for a long time. This comprehensive guide will take you step by step, enlightening you on the eligibility requirements and the ways around bureaucratic bends in your real-life situation.

What is Pre-Settled Status

It is a temporary immigration category sanctioned under the EU Settlement Scheme through which the EU, EEA, or Swiss citizens who have lived in the UK over a shorter period (fewer than 5 years) are granted. Whether you wish to live and work in the UK or just want to gain UK citizenship for a limited period, it’s possible through this program.

What is Settled Status?

It is a permanent immigration status, also known as indefinite leave to remain. It gets to the people that have lived here for at least 5 years and then they become permanent residents of the UK. They are being given the right to continue staying without a problem.

Then, we shall step over the transformation from traveling settlement to secure settlement.

Eligibility for Switching to Settled Status

To become eligible, there are set rules that can be met. On the one hand, there are some situations and considerations that count. Yet, on the other hand, there are exceptions.

Time Spent in the UK

Usually, you may get settled status once you have been to the UK for five years in a row without any discontinuity. This period is computed from the first day you moved to the UK not from the date when you officially returned a pre-settled status. One thing to keep in mind is to consider settling status as early as you can after you become eligible. It’s better, as there is no need to wait until you are going to lose your present status.

Time Spent Outside the UK

Your ability to be eligible will depend on how long you have been outside of the UK in five years, that is another important determinant. You may lose the rights to settled status in UK territory as you have not spent more than half a year in any 12 months preceding the date. This term, keep their absences straight and make sure that they are not staying for more than this limit.

Family Member’s Situation

If you have already applied for pre-settled status as a relative of an EU, EEA, or Swiss citizen, seeking similar status due to changes in your, or your family member’s status, is the prerogative of the Home Office. We shall cover this in more specifics again later.

Determining When Your 5-Year Period Starts

The first of your five years will start counting from the day you enter the United States as a citizen or another status.

Citizens of the EU, EEA, or Switzerland

Let me assume you are in the group of young people who started living in the UK on the day they moved there. If so, your five-year period starts from that day. Very notably, you can submit your applications for permanent residence longer than one year before the expiration of your pre-settled one, thereby not running the risk of being second-rate immigrants in the UK.

Citizens from Outside the EU, EEA, or Switzerland

It depends on whether you are a non-EU, EEA, or Swiss citizen as to how you express when your five-year period starts and is according to your relationship to an EU, EEA, or Swiss citizen at the time that you enter the country.

Close Family Members

Spouse, Civil Partner, Dependent Parents, or Grandparents: As in the case of such people who came to the UK and later married a German citizen, your five years begin from the date of the marriage, irrespective of the situation relating to the residence settled of the spouse during the time.

Dependent Children: If you are a dependent child under 21 then the beginning of your five-year term is on or after the day you came to the UK or the day you became a family member (whichever happened later)

Dependent Children Aged 21 or Over: When your five-year course starts, will depend on your specific condition.

Extended Family Members

If you are an extended family member like somebody’s long-term partner yet unmarried or in a civil partnership you may struggle. However, The five years is approximated from the Day you arrive in the UK or get a residence card whichever comes first. It depends on your first circumstances.

Time Spent Outside the UK

First and foremost, individuals absent from the UK don’t intend to be away longer than six months in any given year of the period of one year, although there is room for exceptions.

Absences for Important Reasons

If you have been outside the UK for up to 12 months for an important reason, for example, by giving birth or being on military service, you still might have a chance to register for settled status. Also excluded are any shielding, caregiving obligations, or observance to travel guidance that don’t include more than six months.

Continuous Residence During the Pandemic

Kindly don’t worry if you were in the United Kingdom for longer periods: 12 months or above then it is useful to remember that coronavirus made it. The first year of your stay, which is the same period that contributes to settled status, will still count as the first year of your stay in the UK. On the other hand, the 12th month that is spent there won’t be taken into account if the stay was outside of the UK even for just a single day.

Special Considerations for Some Applicants

Retired or Stopped Working

In the case you are either living here in the UK and you’re retired or stopped your job, and you’ve been in this country for less than five years you may be able to apply for the settled status. 

Unable to Apply for Settled Status When Pre-Settled Status Ends

You don’t need to be stressed out or try many things, if you can’t aspire to settle status before your pre-settled status is ending. Being you will be granted pre-settled status, you have the right to live and work here, as long as you apply again and will receive five more years of permission. This means taking in the years from both periods of pre-settled to add up to five years to obtain the settled ones. 

Applying as a Family Member

You may also apply for settled status as a family member if you have an EU/EEA/SW national member who has pre-settled or settled status already. In this case, your UK-resident family member could try this option as long as he or she has been in the UK by December 31, 2020.

Eligibility for Reapplying

If you’re considering reapplying for pre-settled status, you should meet the following conditions:

Your visits to the UK before January 31, 2020, were outside this current procedure.

The UK would be your nation of residence by the end of 2020 December.

Changes in Your Family Member’s Situation

You were initially given a derivative of pre-settled status because you took this position as the family member of an EU, EEA, or Swiss citizen; however, changing the family member’s status could solve the problem of getting the new status of settled status.

Ending of a Relationship

If your relationship with your family member avoids a five-year mark or more, it may have an effect on your eligibility criteria for the settlement status.

Unmarried or Civil Partnership: If your relationship dissolves as and when you happen to be unmarried or in courtship, it comes to an end with your non-cohabitation.

Marriage or Civil Partnership: In the event of a dissolution, your relationship remains in a union state and ties are not automatically severed. 

Your relationship is terminated when you apply for it to be dissolved through the process of divorce or the termination of a civil partnership.


There are exceptions to this rule:

  • If you had married status at any given point in the last 3 years; you are eligible for this concession.
  • By the way, our child is in joint custody, if this is the case.
  • For Example, when you’re in an abusive relationship, the breakup most likely happened because of the abuse.
  • Continuing Eligibility
  • Under certain circumstances, you can still qualify for settled status even if your marriage or civil partnership ends:
  • You were married or under a civil partnership that lasted at least 3 years.
  • You must have spent at least one year of your community living in the United Kingdom, where you and your spouse or the partnership have been recognized as married civil partners.
  • He/She was based in the UK when the divorce or dissolution was declared.
  • Moreover, a child under 18, has a right to attain a settled status in the UK, bearing in mind that you are either in charge or you are maintaining the contact. The special cases of domestic violence require the use of specific measures.

Other Family Member Scenarios

It varies from case to when the situation of your family member is that he/she is the partner of the EEA or a Swiss citizen and this can lead to different conditions on how you will obtain settled status.

Applying to Switch to Settled Status

When it includes all the proofs of your identity and you resided here for a continuous period you will be ready to go to settled status via an application process.

Identity Document

Your identity document depends on your citizenship status:

EU, EEA, or Swiss Citizens: Please use your passport or national identity card as your identity document, whether you are a citizen or a foreigner.

Non-EU, EEA, or Swiss Citizens: Your recognized identity document is often your passport, residence card, or biometric residence permit.

Continuous Residence

In some circumstances, they just can use your National Insurance number for the automatic verification of your permanent residency. Thus, there will be no need to send or upload documents. However, whether you have provided proof of family membership in due time or have not yet done so will demand evidence.

The Application Process

It’s possible to introduce the first stage of your application to become a settled status via the GOV.UK official platform. In such kind of scenario, the confirmation letter is sent to your E-mail address. While the site will have the updated status also.

Addressing Application Failures

When the permanent work permit request is rejected you could access the administrative review channel implementing it on GOV.UK. Note also that the procedure will involve an £80 payment which is refundable in case the lawyers’ mistake nullifies the decision.

Once the moment for EU and EEA citizens, as well as Swiss ones, to settle and stay in the long term in the UK arrives it becomes a milestone for them. With good knowledge of the eligibility requirements, exemptions, and application, you will make the trailing process with confidence.

After you have read this full-fledged guide, you will have all the information you need to make good decisions and hence take crucial steps towards peaceful living in this country without any fear of deportation or similar concerns.

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