EU citizens are now being turned down for settled status

The Home Office has started to refuse EU citizens and their family members the right to stay in the UK post-Brexit. It issued 1,400 refusals under the EU Settlement Scheme in June 2020 alone, compared to 900 over the whole of the last couple of years. There had been 200 refusals in May, meaning that the number of refusals has jumped 600% month on month.

There was also a sharp rise in the number of applications rejected as invalid. As Kuba Jabłonowski of campaign group the3million points out, over 10% of all Settlement Scheme decisions taken last month were negative (i.e. the application was refused, void, invalid or withdrawn).

Overall, though, the number of refusals and other rejections is still a drop in the ocean. Almost 2 million people have now been granted settled status under the Settlement Scheme, and another 1.4 million pre-settled status. The cumulative number of refusals is 2,300. Another 55,000 were void, invalid or withdrawn.

The Home Office does not say what the reasons for refusal are. A criminal record is one possibility, although the department says that many of the early trickle of refusals were down to “repeated unsuccessful attempts to obtain missing evidence or information from the applicant”. There is a right of appeal to the First-tier Tribunal.

Posted on Jul 09, 2020.

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