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    What Should Britain's “Europeans” in Poland Prepare for After Brexit?

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    The conditions for a British exit from the EU may affect the status of its citizens who are working or permanently residing in the countries of the European Union. This matter is being taken into account in Poland.

    The country's migration service is encouraging Britons and their family members who are planning a long-term stay in Poland during the transition period as part of Brexit to register as living in the country.

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    Brexit is still being contemplated based on two possible scenarios. If a so-called "hard" exit of the UK from the EU happens, and the nation parts ways with the bloc without any guidelines for its interaction with Europe's economy, it is still not completely clear what the consequences may be for the British economy and the nation's citizens.

    There is a record number of Poles in Britain. The portal bankier.pl, cited the Office for National Statistics (ONS) as saying that as of the end of 2017, more than a million Polish nationals lived in the UK. In turn, Poland also attracts British citizens, although their numbers are certainly much smaller. Currently almost 6,000 Britons have a residence permit in Poland (4,500 men and 1,300 women; including 450 people under the age of 20, 2,600 between the ages of 20-39, 2,100 between 40 and 59 years old; and 630 people over 60 years old).

    The Polish Migration Service (Urząd do Spraw Cudzoziemców) is calling upon Britons and their family members who are planning to reside in Poland to register in the country:

    "A registered residence permit in Poland will be extremely useful for UK citizens in the case of Brexit "without commitment,"explained the Migration Service Press Officer Jakub Dudziak. On March 15, 2019 a law was adopted that regulates, in particular, the residence status of UK citizens and their families in Poland. It will enter into force on the day when Great Britain leaves the European Union," Dudziak told Sputnik.

    According to him, "the law provides for the establishment of a period during which the stay of British citizens and their family members on the territory of Poland immediately after Brexit will be considered legal. It also defines the legal basis for granting them a temporary and permanent residence permit, depending on their right of temporary residence or the right of permanent residence the day before UK leaves the EU. Getting the appropriate permits after Brexit will be much easier for people who have these documents," Jakub Dudziak explained.

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    The Polish expert also stressed that it will be much easier to settle all the formalities of the Brexit transition period if citizens of Great Britain have a residence permit which they've obtained before the new Brexit date.

    "If there's Brexit with a deal, then, most likely, nothing would change for British citizens. In the transition period, they would continue to exercise the right to freedom of movement."

    Dudziak also noted that, the Polish Migration Service has introduced new options for UK citizens: temporary (for 5 years) and permanent (for an indefinite period) residence permits, applications for which can be submitted in the period from the date of Brexit until 31 December 2020.

    The views and opinions expressed by the speaker do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

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