Article 50 was triggered on the 29th March, 2017. It was an emotional affair. The feelings were mixed. There were the determined Brexiters and sad Remainers among the people we spoke. Brexit is one of the most popular exchanges at the moment. It is an easy subject to strike a conversation with nearly everyone.
The Sun did rise the next day
We can definitely confirm that the sun definitely did rise the next morning as we watched the sunrise from the top floor in London when we attended one of the events where foreign Ambassadors and High Commissioners were briefed by UK representatives on the letter that triggered Article 50 to exit the EU.
The UK is determined to reach the following two goals:
- negotiate the arrangement for the free movement of goods;
- negotiate the arrangements for its service industry.
It was stated quite clearly that the UK is determined to understand the needs of its service driven businesses in the UK. It was also understood that additional clauses needed to be inserted to make sure that when the UK exits its industry standards need to retain the same compatible ranking as the rest of the EU/EEA/Swiss countries.
The UK’s ability to hire the best people for the job was also very high on agenda. However, it is unclear what pattern will be followed. At the moment, in relation to the third country nationals, the companies operating in the UK are already delegated the powers of the UK border control.
However, it is also clear that there are some substantive categories where one can be a foreign worker in the UK and may never gain the right to live permanently and indefinitely in the UK.
Meantime in Brussels
Probably, one of the most impressive ways where communities are able to organise themselves swiftly was evidenced by Lithuanian expert panel discussions the previous weekend, which took place at Lithuania’s Permanent Representation to the EU in Brussels on Saturday, the 1st April, 2017.
The representatives from the Lithuanian World Community, Lithuanian UK Community and the Lithuanian City of London Club together with the representatives from the European Commission and Lithuanian Representation to the EU spoke of the status of the Lithuanian citizens in the UK and the necessary steps that Lithuania needs to take in order to secure their status following Brexit.
During the expert panel discussions we provided our expertise on the immigration policy in the UK. We have made examples of how the treatment differs when the person is an EEA/Swiss national or a third country national.
We have highlighted the fact that there are a number of EEA/Swiss nationals living in the UK at the moment that do not necessarily meet the conditions under the EU law to be granted the permanent residence and this makes these EU citizens that may have lived in the UK for years vulnerable bargaining chips in negotiations and their status needs to be protected.
We have also shared the fact that the current treatment of Croatian nationals who are the newest members of the EU, may be the closest resemblance of the treatment that may apply to some of the EU nationals in the future. At the moment, Croatian nationals are required to hold specific permits to be able to work in the UK. Similar rules apply to non-EEA/Swiss nationals in the UK at the moment.
We have also stated that the immediate concern for the UK is to negotiate its trade arrangements and agreements. Should the negotiations not conclude within the two year deadline, the UK has the option of reverting back to pre-EU trade agreements with the rest of the world country by country. In some of these bilateral agreements, the right to free movement of persons and labour is specified.
Our usual day in the office
We can definitely see a clear pattern where individuals identify the need to consult their immigration status and see whether they can be protected under the EU Treaty rights and the freedom of movement and provide services in the UK.
We have been consulted on some of the rejection letters that individuals have received from the Home Office when they have attempted to secure their EU Treaty status independently.
We are more and more contacted by the individuals who are not so sure about their EU status in the UK and their entitlement to the permanent residence in the UK.
The good news are is that we are here to help you and assist you.
Please do not hesitate contacting us via e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or 0203 286 4887. We currently book appointments after the 18th April, 2017.
We wish you a very Happy Easter!