To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of the recommendation of the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants that the Government grant all (a) EEA and (b) Swiss nationals and family members resident in the UK the automatic right to remain.
We have considered carefully the introduction of the EU Settlement Scheme and its implications for EEA and Swiss citizens and their family members, including whether we should automatically grant leave to remain. However, this would create ongoing confusion amongst EEA and Swiss citizens, their family members, employers and service providers as to their rights to remain in the UK and access benefits and services.
Requiring EEA and Swiss nationals to apply for and receive a status via the EU Settlement Scheme is key to ensuring life continues smoothly for them in the future. This will become particularly important when we move into the future immigration system as the resident population will need to be able to distinguish themselves from those who may have different rights.