The government will not appeal a decision by the High Court that rules affecting more than 2 point 5 million EU citizens who reside in the UK are unconstitutional.
Despite having previously stated it would do so, the Home Office has now officially announced it will not appeal the decision.
If they hadn't reapplied for settled or pre-settled status within five years, many EU citizens might have risked losing their right to remain in the country.
After Brexit, a watchdog for the rights of EU citizens filed the lawsuit.
The European Commission and the3million, a group that speaks on behalf of EU citizens in the UK, supported the watchdog Independent Monitoring Authority (IMA). A ticking time bomb had been avoided, according to the statement.
Mr. Justice Lane came to the conclusion in December that a portion of the European Union Settlement Scheme (EUSS), which was established by the Home Office to resolve immigration issues involving EU citizens, was based on an incorrect reading of the UK-EU withdrawal agreement.
The Home Office declared that the decision had become law and that it was working to put it into practice "as quickly as possible" in a clear-cut and straightforward manner.
"Those with pre-settled status are encouraged to apply for settled status as soon as they are eligible, so they can obtain secure evidence of their right of permanent residence in the UK," a spokesperson said. ".
The program, according to Minister of Immigration Robert Jenrick, "has been a huge success. To give them the security they require, we have helped millions of people with ties to the UK obtain status. " .
For EU nationals who wanted to stay in the UK, the Home Office has been operating a two-stage procedure since 2018.
This EUSS was created as a result of the fact that many EU citizens entered the UK without obtaining a visa due to the EU's principle of free movement.
Pre-settled status was granted to them as a result of the program; this restricted right to live and work in the UK expires after five years if they do not reapply for full settled status.
However, at a High Court hearing in London in November, attorneys for the IMA claimed that the settlement plan was incompatible with the Brexit withdrawal agreement due to its impact on some EU citizens and their families, as well as those from nations in the European Economic Area and the European Free Trade Association.
Millions of EU citizens residing in the UK run the risk of losing their rights and being viewed as "illegal overstayers," Robert Palmer KC warned the court.
Those who lived in the UK before the transition period ended in 2020 and were given pre-settled status, he claimed, amounted to about 2.6 million people. .
If they didn't submit a new application within five years, those people would lose their ability to legally reside in the UK, according to Home Office regulations.
They would "be exposed to considerable serious consequences" that would "affect their right to live, work, and access social security support and housing in the UK, and will be subject to detention and removal," according to Mr. Palmer.
According to Mr. Justice Lane's decision, "a very large number of people face the most serious uncertainty," including the possibility of deportation, if the Home Office's interpretation of the law is accurate. .
In his opinion, the Home Office misapplied the law. .
EU citizens had "dealt with uncertainty long enough," according to advocacy group The3million, which speaks for EU nationals living in the UK. The group applauded the government's decision not to pursue an appeal.
It urged the home secretary to protect the residency rights of EU citizens while also taking a "pragmatic approach" to protect the rights of those who are most at risk, such as children, elderly people in care, and victims of domestic abuse.