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BREXIT: UK votes to leave the EU

The UK has voted to leave the EU (51.9% to leave and 48.1% to remain). Leave won the majority of votes in England and Wales, while every council in Scotland saw Remain majorities.

If you are currently in the UK as an EEA national or the family member then you will not be affected immediately by this result. Now the UK and the EU will need to negotiate a withdrawal agreement.

In his speech the morning after Brexit referendum, David Cameron announced that he would be stepping down as Prime Minister by October.

Article 50 of the Treaty on European Union allows a member state to notify the EU of its withdrawal and obliges the EU to try to negotiate a ‘withdrawal agreement’ with that state. The member state would leave the EU two years after the date article 50 was invoked by the member state.

During the two-year negotiation period, EU laws would still apply to the UK. The UK would continue to participate in other EU business as normal, but it would not participate in internal EU discussions or decisions on its own withdrawal. Also, during this time UK would remain a member of the EU, thus meaning that EEA nationals may remain in the UK.

It is uncertain when or if the UK will invoke Article 50 and what the outcome will be for current EEA nationals living in the UK with their dependent family members after leaving the EU. Under those circumstances it is advisable for people in this position to submit applications for Permanent Residence if they have acquired five years continuous residence or other relevant EEA applications if they wish to remain in the UK.

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