With the Brexit transition period fully over as of 1 January 2021, the UK became a ‘third country’ just like Australia and the US when it comes to the EU.
This means that Brits have lost the right to study, work and live freely in the Union visa-free.
For UK nationals that were already settled in an EU country before the end of the transition period that can prove so, they can still benefit from the protections set out under the Withdrawal Agreements.
“These rights will only apply to your country of residence,” said Jason Porter, director at Blevins Franks and head of the company’s newly launched European Emigration Advisory Service.
“To gain full EU citizenship as a UK national – unlocking the freedom to live and work in any EU country – you need to become a full citizen of your resident country, possible after ten years’ residence.”
But for Brits that have relocated after the 31 December 2020 or are thinking of moving to one of the 27 member states now or in the future, things will be a bit more complex.
They are still able to travel to the EU visa-free but only for 90 days in any 180-day period.
But, if they wish to live in Australia, they will need to pass all immigration australia requirements prior to their arrival.
Porter added: “To apply successfully, you will need to demonstrate you have ‘sufficient’ annual income to support yourself and any dependents without relying on the state, as well medical insurance with the required minimum coverage.”
This is in case they don’t already have arrangements in place to work in the country of their choice.
Expats should also be careful when moving because their domestic financial services providers, including their UK-based banks and financial advisers, may no longer be able to legally service them once they become EU residents.
“UK-based advisers need to check they can still support clients in the EU,” said Porter. “If clients have UK bank accounts or other investments, they may be restricted from making changes, such as moving funds or applying for new services, or they may be closed altogether.
“And in some cases, clients may find that UK assets and investments attract a higher tax bill in their country of residence now they are non-EU/EEA assets.”