Two factors will affect the process that will apply to you – when you begin your course and whether or not the UK reaches a withdrawal agreement with the EU.
The UK government and the EU are currently working to finalise an agreement. It will define the rights of EU citizens to live and study in the UK during a transitional period that is likely to last until 31 December 2020.
If this agreement is reached:
- Students beginning courses in 2019 and 2020
During the transitional period, EU citizens and their family members can enter and remain in the UK on the same basis as they can now. The same applies to people from Norway, Iceland, Lichtenstein and Switzerland as the Government has reached similar agreements with those countries.
To remain in the UK after the transitional period, students can apply for permission in the UK under a Government scheme known as the EU Settlement Scheme which is designed to be short and straightforward.
- Students beginning courses in 2021 and later
Those arriving from 1 January 2021 are likely to need to apply for immigration permission to come to the UK under a category of the immigration rules that are in place at that time.
If this agreement is not reached:
Those who enter the UK during the transitional period will make an online application for 'European Temporary Leave to Remain'. If this application is successful, they will get immigration permission for a period of three years. If they wish to stay in the UK after this three-year period they will make an application under the immigration system in place at that time.
For more information: UK Council for International Student Affairs advice on what Brexit means for students and their families