Your need for an EEA Family permit would depend on a number of things including either if you would normally require a visa to the UK or not as well as if you are from a non-visa country. If you are a non-EEA Family member and you are seeking to join your EEA family member (sponsor) in the UK, you may be able to apply for an EEA Family Permit (EEA FP). The EEA FP is usually valid for a period of 6 months. Please note that if the non-EEA family member is already resided in the UK, they should apply for a Residence Card.

A non-European family member of a British citizen who is resided abroad may be eligible to apply for the EEA family permit to be able to join the British citizen in the United Kingdom given that:-

  • The parties in the relationship as either a spouse or civil partner have been living together in the EEA country.
  • The family permit is issued for six months and before the expiry of the EEA family permit, the non-EEA national can apply for residence card as a family member of an EEA national.

Residence Cards are a form of confirmation of your right of residence under European law. This type of immigration status will usually be produced as a separate document called Biometric Residence Permit (BRP). If your application for a Residence Card is approved, you will usually be issued 5 years stay in the UK, which will be dependent on your European or Swiss family member remaining in the UK. The UKVI/Home Office is bound by the less restrictive European Regulations 2006 to make a decision within 6 months of your application.

.The European or Swiss national must be exercising his/her treaty rights in the UK or in other words EEA-national must be a qualified person. This means that they must be:

  • Working; or
  • Self-sufficient; or
  • Self-employed as long as they are suitably registered as self-employed and paying the appropriate national insurance and tax; or
  • Job seeker for no more than six months; or
  • Student with comprehensive sickness insurance.

Appealing a Refusal

If your application for a Residence Card is refused, you have the right to appeal against this decision. You will be given a reason for the refusal letter together with the relevant appeal forms. You have 10 working days to appeal such a refusal (or 5 working days if in detention) and the matter will be listed to be heard by an immigration judge at the Immigration and Asylum chamber (IAC) First Tier Tribunal.

How we can help

Our team of expert immigration solicitors are more than happy to help you with your EEA visa application. Contact us today on 02037442797 or send us an email on


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