The total number of applications received since the testing of the scheme began on 28 August 2018 is now over 600,000, and we received over 50,000 applications in the first weekend the scheme was fully live.
In total, over 230,000 people applied during the three testing phases of the EU Settlement Scheme. Over 31,000 of these people applied during the two private beta testing phases and we do not consider that this was a low turnout or that it needs investigating. It was not our intention to process high volumes during these phases, which were implemented gradually to bring the systems up to scale in a controlled way. This gave us a valuable evidence base from which to assess the application process and allowed for incremental improvements to be made in response to applicant feedback
We have been clear that applying during the testing phases was voluntary and EU citizens will have until 30 June 2021 to apply, in line with the draft Withdrawal Agreement, or until 31 December 2020 in the event of no deal.