Is Brussels willing to pay for EU nationals’ UK application fees?

Jean-Claude Juncker © European People's Party (CC BY 2.0)

Discussions at the highest levels of the European Commission have taken place regarding proposals for Brussels to cover application costs of EU nationals wanting to stay in the UK.

The UK Home Office has said that EU nationals seeking to stay within the UK following Brexit will have to pay £72 (€82) for an application.

Now, reports have emerged that the European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker, has put forward a suggestion that Brussels cover the fees if the UK doesn’t think of a less strict policy.

The issue of citizens’ rights

One of the major discussion points is still ongoing from the first phase of talks, about the issue of citizens’ rights and an announcement regarding the highly criticised application will be made in the coming days.

Juncker’s sympathy towards the situation has resulted in him deciding to offer a helping hand and agreed in a meeting with the European Parliament’s Brexit group to take up this issue of the charges with UK Prime Minister Theresa May.

Who will the application affect?

There are currently three million EU nationals living in the UK and for those who have already applied for permanent residence in the UK and have been there for five years, they will not face any further fees when they convert to the so called ‘settled status’.

For those who do have to pay the application fee, according to the government, the charge is “no more than the cost of a passport.”

During the application process, the applicants must pass a criminal record test.

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