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Brexit Issue(s) Action required

For NI / UK employers

- of EU 26 nationals:
Every EEA (EU 27, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway) or Swiss national residing in the UK other than Irish nationals (hereafter referred to as EU 26 nationals), must make an application under the UK’s EU Settlement Scheme by 31 December 2020 (in the event of a No Deal scenario) or 30 June 2021 (if there is a Deal) to prove their right to live and work in the UK.

In order to be eligible to apply for the UK’s EU Settlement Scheme an EU26 national must be living in the UK before 31 December 2020 (if there is a Deal) or the day the UK leaves the EU if there is No Deal.

In the event of a No Deal Brexit, any EU 26 national who subsequently arrives in the UK after the UK’s departure from the EU and wishes to stay in the UK after 31 December 2020, should make an application for European Temporary Leave to Remain. To be eligible to make this application, the individual must arrive in the UK and make the application before 31 December 2020. This will grant the EU 26 national a further 36 months in the UK

- of British nationals travelling or working in the EU 26:
The immigration implications of sending a British employee to the EU 26 after the UK’s departure from the EU will need to be considered.

The immigration implications of Brexit for British employees and their families who are already resident in the EU 26 will need to be considered.

We recommend that NI / UK businesses with EU 26 national employees plan for the future, and:

Assist your EU 26 national employees with the UK’s EU Settlement Scheme and other Brexit matters. Each of your EU 26 national employees, who are based in the UK, will have to make an application under the UK’s EU Settlement Scheme, to evidence their right to live and work in the UK. The scheme opened on 21 January 2019 and will continue regardless of whether a withdrawal agreement is ratified.

From 1 January 2021, when a new UK immigration system is expected to apply, it will be more difficult to recruit lower paid workers from outside the UK. As such, we advise employers to retain their workforce by providing affected employees with advice and assistance in relation to the UK’s EU Settlement Scheme, European Temporary Leave to Remain (if there is No Deal Brexit), as well as other factors which may be causing concern for employees (such as the rights of their children to live in the UK or to obtain British/Irish nationality).

In the event of a No Deal Brexit EU 26 national employees living in the UK at that date will have the most beneficial legal rights possible with regard to remaining in the UK. This should be borne in mind with regard to workforce planning.

Make plans for any temporary/transitional immigration schemes which may alleviate labour shortages in the post Brexit immigration system, e.g. European Temporary Leave to Remain – businesses should contact their immigration advisor in relation to other immigration routes and options for recruiting labour outside the UK.

It is expected that in the event of a No Deal Brexit or after any transition period in the event of a Deal, any British employees travelling to work in the EU 26 for a period of more than 90 days in any 180 day period after those dates will require a work visa. Each EU26 Member State will have its own immigration rules, therefore consideration should be given to the work visa process, lead in times to obtain a visa and costs of obtaining work visas.

In the event of the UK exiting the EU with a deal, British nationals can continue to travel to and work freely in EU 26 countries in the same manner as today. British nationals living in an EU 26 country prior to the end of any transition period should be able to apply to apply to remain after the UK has left the EU.

Employers should consider what assistance they can give to British nationals already living in the EU to obtain permanent residence/nationality in the country they are living and working in. Employers can also engage KPMG to assist these employees with any queries, such as returning to the UK with a non British/Irish family member..

For Republic of Ireland employers:

- of EU 26 nationals:
The immigration implications of sending an EU 26 national to the UK will need to be considered.

The immigration implications for EU 26 national employees already resident in the UK will need to be considered

- of British nationals:
The immigration implications of sending a British employee to the EU 26 will need to be considered.

The immigration implications for British employees already resident in the EU 26 will need to be considered.

In the event of a No Deal Brexit, if EU 26 national employees travel to work in the UK after the date the UK leaves the EU and they wish to stay in the UK after 31 December 2020, they should make an application for European Temporary Leave to Remain – discussed above.

In the event of a No Deal Brexit, EU 26 nationals already residing in the UK at the date of the UK’s exit must make an application under the UK’s EU settlement scheme before 31 December 2020 if they wish to stay in the UK - discussed above.

Should the UK leave the EU with a Deal, EU 26 national employees can continue to travel to and work freely in the UK until 31 December 2020. If they wish to stay in the UK beyond 31 December 2020, they will need to make an application under the UK’s EU settlement scheme before 30 June 2021 - discussed above.

Information regarding the implications of sending British employees to the EU 26, and for British employees already resident in the EU 26 is set out in the last 3 paragraphs of the previous page.

The Common Travel Area (CTA)
The rights of Irish nationals to live and work in the UK, and British nationals to live and work in the Republic of Ireland will not change.
The UK and Ireland have agreed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) on the Common Travel Area. Whilst the MOU is not legally binding, it sets out the shared political position of the UK and Ireland. Whether there is a “Deal” or “No Deal”, the rights of Irish nationals to live and work in the UK, and British nationals to live and work in the Republic of Ireland will not change as a result of Brexit.

Social Security and pension issues - sending employees from the EU to the UK/NI and vice versa

In the event of a No Deal Brexit the UK will no longer be a part of the EU’s framework that governs the treatment of social security, benefits and social security based pensions.

In the event that the UK leaves the EU with a Deal, it is expected the current arrangements will last for the duration of any transition period (or perhaps longer if such issues are dealt with in any agreement on a future relationship).

For any employer sending employees from the EU (including Ireland) to the UK (including NI) to work or vice versa after Brexit, they will need to consider the social security implications and what benefits those employees will be entitled to in their “host country”. The UK has a number of bilateral agreements with EU countries that applied prior to the UK’s accession to the EU Single Market that will govern the treatment of social security and benefits after Brexit. In general, the treatment under these agreements is less favourable than under the existing EU arrangements. As such, employers may have to reimburse employees for the difference particularly if the applicable arrangements change while an employee is seconded abroad, i.e. the UK leaves the EU mid secondment.