EU Countries: British Nationals Abroad

Department for Exiting the European Union written question – answered on 8th November 2018.

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Photo of Luke Pollard Luke Pollard Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) (Fisheries, Flooding and Water)

To ask the Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union, when UK citizens living in the EU will have certainty about their rights after the UK leaves the EU.

Photo of Chris Heaton-Harris Chris Heaton-Harris The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union

Citizens’ rights has been our first priority since the very beginning of this process.

In December 2017, we reached a fair and reciprocal agreement with the EU on the rights of EU citizens in the UK and UK nationals in the EU, and this is set out in the draft Withdrawal Agreement. The agreement confirms that any UK national resident in the EU by December 2020 will be able to stay in their Member State of residence and will provide citizens more certainty about healthcare, pensions and other benefits.

While the Government is preparing for a range of scenarios, including the unlikely event that we reach March 2019 without agreeing a deal, the Prime Minister stated to EU citizens on 21 September “I want to be clear with you that even in the event of no deal your rights will be protected. You are our friends, our neighbours, our colleagues. We want you to stay.”

We welcome the reassurances from a number of Member States that they will protect the interests of UK nationals living in their Member States in the unlikely event of a ‘no deal’ scenario and are urging the remaining Member States counterparts to do the same.

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