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European Commission warning to UK on Free Movement rights and Comprehensive Sickness Insurance remains unanswered | Immigration Matters

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On 26 April 2012 the European Commission gave the United Kingdom two months to comply with European Union rules on the free movement of EU citizens and their families across the EU or face an EU court case, according to the Free Movement blog. See: Europa press release.

Almost three months later no official response appears to have been published by the Home Office on the four issues raised, which are:

1. Visa free travel in EU countries for non-EU holders of valid residence card

The Free Movement Directive (2004/38/EC) guarantees that non-EU family members of EU citizens holding a valid residence card issued by one EU country can travel together with EU citizens within the European Union without an entry visa. UK laws do not grant this free movement right.

2. Rights of extended family members of EU citizens

The UK does not allow extended family members of EU citizens to apply to have their residence in the UK considered under EU law when they were lawfully residing in the UK before the arrival to the UK of the EU citizen on whom they are dependent.

3. Comprehensive Sickness Insurance for EU Citizens

Under the Free Movement Directive, EU citizens who settle in another EU country but do not work there may be required to have sufficient resources and sickness insurance. But the UK will not take into account an EU citizen’s entitlement to treatment as part of the UK public healthcare scheme (NHS). This breaches EU law. The directive’s rquirement for ‘self sufficient’ EU nationals coming to live in the UK to have private ‘comprehensive’ sickness insurance has been extended to Bulgarian and Romanian students.

Bulgarian and Romanian students on courses longer than six months are also forced to take out expensive private medical insurance policies (when applying for ‘yellow card’ registration documents) which they do not need, as they can get free treatment in NHS hospitals. If the UK backed down on this issue now many students who have paid hundreds of pounds in insurance premiums may demand their money back?

4. Residence documents for Bulgarian and Romanian citizens

The UK does not issue workers from Romania and Bulgaria during the first 12 months with the same residence documents as workers from other EU Member States. EU law allows the United Kingdom to temporarily keep in place a work-permit scheme for workers from Bulgaria and Romania. However, those who have a work permit have the same right to reside as other EU workers and must be issued the corresponding residence documents.

Bulgarian and Romanian citizens are subject to restrictions on working in the UK and cannot be employed in the same way as other EEA nationals. UK work restrictions on Bulgarian and Romanian nationals were extended until the end of 2013 by the government last November.

Millions of British citizens live in other European countries and they are the third largest users of EU free movement rights.

Romanian Sudent with Yellow Card to work and study in UK

Bulgarians and Romanians coming to the UK on Yellow Card registration permits can work and study full time on vocational courses such as NVQ or QCF courses in Health and Social Care

Bulgarian and Romanian citiziens appear to be treated as Accession State workers, rather than EEA nationals with full rights, even after working legally in the UK for the required 12 months.

See also:

Employment restrictions for Bulgarians and Romanians extended until end of 2013

EU and non-EU workers take more UK jobs as number of Britons in work plunges

Health care workers needed in UK now

New Government funded courses available for Bulgarian and Romanian EU students

HOW TO FIND APPLICATION FORMS FOR A ‘YELLOW’ OR ‘BLUE’ CARD REGISTRATION CERTIFICATE ON THE UK BORDER AGENCY WEBSITE

Free Movement of EU nationals explained

Immigration Rules for Bulgarian and Romanian nationals

7 tips for completing a Yellow Card BR1 application to work and study in the UK

If you need any immigration advice or help with Sponsorship or Work Permits, Visa, ILR/Settlement, Citizenship, dependant visa or an appeal against a refusal please email: 

info@immigrationmatters.co.uk or visit www.immigrationmatters.co.uk

Majestic College offer special packages for EU students and access to fully funded courses with NO UPFRONT FEES. They also have a number of employers looking for staff right now and are willing to employ Bulgarians and Romanians.

For more information call Joanna on 0208 207 1020 or email   info@majesticcollege.org

Yellow Card granted Romanian Student

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39 Responses to “European Commission warning to UK on Free Movement rights and Comprehensive Sickness Insurance remains unanswered”
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