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In an effort to modernize the way UKVI tracks overseas migrants coming to the United Kingdom, UK settlement residence cards have been introduced. If you are planning to settle in the UK or want to learn more about applying for UK residence cards, you should check out this FAQ for a start. At Key Visa, we have the expertise to facilitate online work that’s necessary for a successful visa application. You can be sure that we also handle each of our client’s case in a professional manner.

What are UK Settlement Residence Cards?

These are new cards that have been introduced in the UK, at the beginning of May 2015. It overtook the previous settlement visa cards that were issued by the Embassy. Those visas also had a validity of two years and nine months. The new UK settlement residence cards have a one-month validity period if they are issued in Bangkok. This means that your Thai partner is required to enter the United Kingdom within one month from their visa’s start date. Once they have arrived in the UK, they must proceed to their designated post office to collect their official residence card (within 10 days of their arrival). In most cases, their cards have already been printed and issued. The new one month restriction has been causing problems for some couples when the British partner has work commitments and cannot travel to Thailand to accompany their partner back to the UK. In this case it is possible to book an airport concierge to meet your partner directly from the plane and accompany them through the airport and immigration. While this isn’t necessary it can make first time travellers feel more comfortable and confident about travelling alone. If you need to book an airport concierge you can contact asiafasttrack.com who can arrange airport transfers at any airport worldwide. 

How do You Know If You are Qualified to Obtain a PRC or RC?

You should know that EEA nationals cannot simply enter the UK and demand/expect to live as a British citizen right away. If the individual wants to live in the country for more than three months, he or she must ensure they meet the criteria for a “qualified person.” If you want to be qualified, you must:

  • Have the ability to support yourself financially (you don’t need to access public funds)
  • Be a student
  • Be self-employed
  • Hold a full-time job position

If you are a jobseeker, you have limited rights to remain in the United Kingdom for more than three months.

What is a PRC and a RC? How are They Different?

Under European Law, a Registration Certificate (RC) can be utilized by residence of Switzerland and the EEA as proof that they possess the necessary rights to live in another EU country, the UK included. It also serves as a confirmation that the individual is a qualified person who’s exercising treaty rights. A Permanent Residence Card is only given to an individual if he or she is a citizen of the EEA or Switzerland, who has also lived and exercised treaty rights in the UK for a period of at least five years.

Do You Need to Apply for a PRC?

If you are an EEA citizen and have lived in the United Kingdom for five years or more, you automatically acquire PR rights. You are required to exercise your treaty rights during that time as well. However, individuals (with PR) who wants to apply for British citizenship, are required to first apply for a PRC. This change took place on 12th November 2015 and was introduced by the British Nationality (General) (Amendment No. 3) Regulations 2015.

Is it Possible to Lose One’s PR Status?

If you were absent from the United Kingdom for over two consecutive years, you will lose your PR status. The status can also be revoked if the revocation is justified on grounds of public health, public security, public policy, abuse of rights, as well as amendments that came into force from 1 January 2014.

When Can an Extended Family Member Apply for a RC?

Extended family members are defined as:

  • A nephew or niece
  • An uncle or aunt
  • A cousin
  • A brother or sister

In some cases, extended family members can apply for a RC. To qualify, they must have a serious medical condition that requires personal care or have lived in the same house before and after arriving in the UK.

Can You Apply as a Family Member or Unmarried Partner?

For “family member” situations:

Yes, certain family members are entitled to live with an EEA national in the UK. Under EEA law, the spouse of the EEA national, as well as the children, grandchildren, grandparents or dependent parents of the EEA national or the spouse are considered family members.

For “unmarried partner” situations:

Yes, you can apply as a family member if you can show that your relationship with the EEA national is a lasting one.