EEA Family Permit

EEA Family Permit


If you are a non-EEA family member, you can apply for an  EEA family permit to enter the UK. This applies to those who are from outside the EEA, or you are the family member or ‘extended’ family member of an EEA or Swiss national.

 There are other ways in which you may be eligible, such as through a ‘derivate right of residence’ because you are the carer of someone who who has the right to reside in the UK, the carer’s child, or the child of an EEA national who previously worked in the UK. 

Another route is through a ‘Surinder Singh application’ after living in another EEA country with a British family member, or with a ‘retained right of residence’ where you have the right to stay in the UK as a family member of an EEA national who died, left the UK or no longer your partner. You must apply for the EEA family permit from outside the UK.

Once your application has been granted, you will be issued with an EEA Family Permit that usually lasts for up to five years, after which you will be eligible to apply for Permanent Residence, with an option to then apply for British Citizenship.

There will be no change to the rights and status of EU citizens living in the UK until 2021. You and your family members can apply for ‘settled status’ to continue residing in the UK after June 2021, however, the scheme will open fully by March 2019.

Understanding the complex EEA law and guidelines takes time and expert knowledge, which is why we are here to help. We will guide you through your options based on your individual circumstances, applying it to the current up to date legislation and changes. Our experts will talk you through each step of your action plan, your requirements and support your application process from start to finish; working towards the best outcome for you and your family. Call us on 0744 8077 407, complete the online contact form or get in touch via social media.

UK Immigration rules are complex and challenging which is why we work to our client’s best interest and understand what is at stake.

Fill out the form and one of our immigration experts will be in touch.


The European law definition of a family member is considerably wider than under the UK Immigration Rules and includes spouses, civil partners, partners in a ‘durable relationship’ and children.

As the rules governing EEA Family Permits are stipulated by European Law, applicants who are children of an EEA national may be up to 21 years of age, rather than the UK legal classification of a child. It may also be possible to bring dependent parents, grandparents and extended family members such as siblings and cousins to live in the UK using this route, although where the EEA national is a student they may only be joined by their partner and/or dependent children. You must also meet the eligibility requirements of being from outside of the European Economic Area (EEA) and the family member in question must be an EEA national.

Generally, the criteria for an EEA Family Permit caters for the following:

  • Spouses/Civil Partners
  • Unmarried Partners
  • Children under the age of 21

And in certain circumstances:

  • Parents
  • Grandparents
  • Siblings
  • Cousins

There is not fee for an EEA family permit.

An EEA family permit is valid for five years, after which the non-EEA family member can make an application for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in the UK or permanent residence.

We understand that with Brexit negotiations well underway, it is important to have security; our team of expert immigration lawyers can help you to get this.

DSI Chambers hosts a team of specialist immigration lawyers who can help you find the best route to take as an EEA or Swiss national, inform you of your next steps and guide you through each stage of your application process.

We will:

  • Ensure that all your documents are sufficient before you make an application
  • Ensure that you/your family members are eligible for an EEA Family Permit application
  • Complete your application to the highest standard
  • Prepare a Letter of Representation to accompany your application. This letter details your case and its merits and recommends that your case is accepted by the Home Office;
  • Liaise with the Home Office until a decision regarding your application is reached.