EEA nationals: rights of entry and residence
EEA nationals: rights of entry and residence

The following Immigration guidance note provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • EEA nationals: rights of entry and residence
  • Is EU free movement law still relevant in the UK post-Brexit?
  • Rights of entry
  • 'Initial' right of residence for three months
  • 'Extended' right of residence for more than three months
  • Permanent residence and other rights of residence
  • Dual nationals

Important notice on Brexit: As of exit day (31 January 2020) the UK is no longer an EU Member State. However, in accordance with the Withdrawal Agreement, the UK has entered an implementation period, during which it continues to be subject to EU law. This has an impact on this Practice Note. For further guidance, see Practice Note: Brexit materials—citizens’ rights.

This Practice Note summarises the rights of entry and residence of European Economic Area (EEA) nationals under EU free movement law.

Note that throughout this section, the term 'EEA nationals' refers to nationals of the countries in the EEA other than the UK, as well as Switzerland, which reflects the definition in the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016 (EEA Regs 2016), SI 2016/1052.

It is important to be aware that entry and residence on this basis is by right, and EEA nationals (and third country nationals) who meet the conditions for an EU right of residence are not required to obtain leave to enter or remain in the UK under the Immigration Rules.

The Immigration Rules, Introduction, para 5 provides that:

'Save where expressly indicated, these Rules do not apply to those persons who are entitled to enter or remain in the UK by virtue of the provisions of the 2006 EEA