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Help and advice about the UK leaving the EU

Westminster is an incredibly diverse city and we’re proud to welcome people from all over the world who choose to make Westminster their home.

So if you're one of the 30,000 EU citizens living in Westminster or 55,000 businesses that could be affected by Brexit, we’re here to help. We value the contribution you make to your local communities. That’s why we’ve put in place support so you can to continue to live, work and feel welcome in the city.

There will be a transition period from 31 January until the end of 2020, while the UK and EU negotiate future arrangements. The current rules on trade, travel, and business for the UK and EU will continue to apply during the transition period. However you, your family or your business can take some actions now to prepare for 2021. Details on what you need to do and the support the council has on offer are below.

Be reassured, the council is also taking action to prepare itself for the impact of the UK leaving the EU, so that we minimise any disruption to key council services. We’re working with other London councils and the government in preparing for Brexit to make sure the transition is as smooth as possible.

1. Residents

Government advice

The UK government has reached an agreement with the European Union on citizens’ rights. This agreement will protect your rights after the UK leaves the European Union and enable you apply for settled status.

Visit GOV.UK to find out more about your rights, whether you qualify for settled status and a step-by-step guide to help you through the application process.

Dedicated Westminster residents advice service and helpline

An advice service and helpline has been set up to help EU nationals living in Westminster who are worried about their status in the run up to Brexit. Westminster City Council is working with Citizens Advice Westminster and the Migrants Resource Centre to ensure you get the best advice.

Call 0300 330 9011 (open Tuesdays and Thursdays from 11am to 2pm).

Other places to get advice

There’s lots of places where residents can get the most up to date advice. The government's official source for a wide-range of information for residents and businesses about the UK leaving the EU (also known as Brexit) is Prepare for EU ExitThe GLA has also set up an EU Londoner's Hub which has a list of questions and answers, and details of support organisations

Continue to live in the UK after it leaves the EU

If you’re an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, you and your family can apply to the government’s EU Settlement Scheme to continue living in the UK after 30 June 2021. If your application is successful, you’ll get either settled or pre-settled status. The EEA includes the EU countries and also Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway. You may be able to stay in the UK without applying - for example, if you’re an Irish citizen or have indefinite leave to remain. The EU Settlement Scheme is open and you can apply now if you meet the criteria and you’re in the UK.

Find out more about the EU Settlement Scheme and how to apply

Westminster City Council also offers a service to scan and verify identity documents for your EU Settlement Scheme application.

Find out more about our identity document scanning service

The deadline for applying is 30 June 2021.

2. Businesses

Make sure your business is prepared for the UK leaving the EU. Use GOV.UK's online tool to check:

  • what your business or organisation may need to do to prepare for Brexit
  • what’s changing in your industry
  • information on specific rules and regulations

Start now

Further information is available on GOV.UK regarding:

Employing EU citizens

If you employ any EU citizens you can support your employees through their application for settled status using the guide for employers with EU staff on GOV.UK.

How the council has been helping businesses

The council conducted a survey among Westminster businesses as part of its Brexit planning in order to better understand the Brexit-related challenges that are faced by businesses, in particular, in terms of recruitment and retention.

The council established the HIRE Westminster service to help businesses recruit locally, initially focusing on retail and hospitality. A number of Westminster businesses in this sector have already signed up to the programme. 

In it's first month, HIRE held a community-based recruitment and training day at Church Street and 17 job starts that have already been secured with employers participating in the scheme.

Contact Westminster Employment Service ay wesemployer@westminster.gov.uk to find out more.


Last updated: 11 February 2020