Employing staff and working overseas

EU nationals living and working in the UK are going to be impacted by Brexit. This section aims to discuss whether EU27 staff can continue to be employed, the effect of Brexit on the recognition of UK professional qualifications as well as the impact on employer liability insurance and insurance covering the personal possessions of individuals.

Employers may like to support EEA citizens they employ to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme.  EEA citizens wishing to apply must already be living in the UK when it leaves on 31 October 2019.  The deadline for applications is 31 December 2020. EEA citizens with five years’ continuous residence in the UK by the day they apply will usually get ‘settled status’.  Those applicants with less than five years’ continuous residence will usually get ‘pre-settled status’ that is later converted into ‘settled staus’ following five years’ continuous residence.  Under ‘settled status’ or ‘pre-settled’ status, EEA citizens can enjoy the same rights and conditions they currently have under free movement.

EU citizens arriving between 1 Nov 2019 and 31 Dec 2020 will be able to apply for European Temporary Leave to Remain (Euro TLR) immigration status. This is a 36 month temporary immigration status, after which individuals will need to apply to the new immigration system – which is due to come into operation from 2021.

Employer right to work checks are not changing until 2021 at the earliest, with passport and ID cards still valid. Employers will not be required to “tell the difference” between EU staff already in the UK, but who have not yet applied for the EU Settlement Scheme, and new arrivals after no deal.

The recognition of professional qualifications laid down in Directive 2005/36/EC enables the free movement of professionals, such as those existing in the field of insurance intermediaries, within the EU.

On 21 June 2018, the EU Commission published a notice to stakeholders in relation to the “Withdrawal of the United Kingdom and EU rules in the field of regulated Professions and the recognition of Professional Qualifications”. A copy of the notice can be found here. The Commission has advised that this will have the following consequences:

UK Nationals
The withdrawal of the UK does not affect decisions on the recognition of professional qualifications obtained in the UK taken before the withdrawal date. This is on the basis of Directive 2005/36/EC.

As of the withdrawal date, UK nationals will be third country nationals and Directive 2005/36/EC will not apply to them. This means that the recognition of UK nationals in an EU-27 Member State will be governed by the national policies and rules of that Member State. This applies irrespective of where the qualifications were obtained.

Further, the temporary or occasional provision of services by UK nationals even if they are already legally established in an EU-27 Member State will be governed by the national policies and rules of that Member State.

EU-27 Nationals
In respect of EU-27 nationals the Commission has advised that, qualifications obtained in the UK as of the withdrawal date are third country qualifications for the purposes of the EU law and will no longer be covered by the recognition regime under Directive 2005/36/EC, but in accordance with Article 2(2) of Directive 2005/36/EC, the national policies and rules of the EU-27 Member States.

The Commission has advised that EU-27 nationals holding UK professional qualifications obtained before the withdrawal dates, should consult the relevant national authorities to assess whether it is advisable to obtain, before the withdrawal date, the recognition of UK professional qualifications in an EU-27 Member State.

The information contained herein is of a general nature and is not intended to address the circumstances of any particular individual or entity. Although we endeavour to provide accurate and timely information, there can be no guarantee that such information is accurate as of the date it is received or that it will continue to be accurate in the future. No one should act on such information without appropriate professional advice after a thorough examination of the particular situation.