Tier 4 Visa/UK Settlement Scheme

  • Hello, I am a dual U.S./EU citizen who will be studying at university in the UK (although I won't receive my EU passport until I have already started my studies.) Although I believe that I could enter the country and study as a “dependent under the age of 21” of my EU parent (who would be traveling with me), I would feel more confident entering the country on a 3-year Tier 4 Student Visa. Once I've arrived and have my EU passport, I would like to apply to the UK Settlement Scheme so that I might remain and work in the UK after my studies without need for a work visa. Is there any reason why I cannot apply for settlement status while in the UK on a Tier 4 visa?
    Thank you, Jim

  • Immigration Adviser


    Once you have received your EU passport, I can't foresee any issues with applying for pre settled status. Your rights as an EEA national should supersede your Tier 4 General visa, once you have made the application.

  • Jason,

    Thank you for your reply.

    Just to clarify, I have never lived in an EU country. Will this matter when applying for pre-settled status?

    Also, how long do I need to be in the UK before I can apply to the settlement scheme? (Is there a waiting period?)

    Finally, does the time I spend in the UK on my Tier 4 visa count toward the residency requirement for settled status? (As I understand it, I can stay in the UK for 5 years from the date I get pre-settled status. At which time, in order to move to settled status, I have to show 5 years of residency. So if my university time doesn't count, then I won't meet the criteria.)


  • Immigration Adviser


    The fact you haven't lived in an EU country doesn't matter as long as you have the passport.

    You can apply for pre-settled status immediately.

    You must have spent 5 years continuous residence in the UK as a qualified person under the EEA regulations. As a Tier 4 student you won't have done this, so that won't be counted towards permanent residency. This is why you must apply for pre settled status and not settled status.

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