The UK Changes The Rules on Surinder Singh

On 3 December 2013, the UK government adopted the Immigration (European Economic Area) (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulations 2013 (SI No 3032) which amend Regulation 9 of the Immigration (EEA) Regulations. The new rules take effect on 1 January 2014.

From that date, it will now be a new requirement for those using the Surinder Singh route that the “the centre of [the British citizen]’s life has transferred to the EEA State where [the British citizen] resided as a worker or self-employed person.”

You can view more of A. Valcke’s post here: EU Rights Clinic: Surinder Singh Rules Changed.

I think that the post above sums up fantastically what the requirements should mean. Many of the new possible requirements already being completed. Here are some simple tips (and that is obviously all they are) to keep you on the right side…

  • Don’t leave kids behind, and make sure you sort out their education in the host member state
  • Transfer your car over to the new host member state, as well as your driving license.
  • Replace your EHIC with the local EHIC.
  • Don’t keep a rented accomodation in the UK, unless of course its necessary.

It’s very wise to remember the case of Mrs Carpenter Case C-60/00. Her British Spouse (Mr Carpenter) never actually lived in an EU state, but still his simple provision of services to the EU was sufficient to bestow upon Mrs Carpenter a right of residence from the EU treaties.

It is also highlighted by the Home Office in their Freedom of Information response regarding the Effect of Case C-60/00 (Carpenter) on an EEA2 application to myself the following:

The Carpenter case simply highlights the fact that Member States cannot take action against the family members of EU nationals which would breach their rights under Article 8 of the ECHR. While the context of the case related to the exercise of the freedom to provide services, the determining factor in the case was the disproportionate effect of the proposed deportation of Mr Carpenter‟s wife.

6 thoughts on “The UK Changes The Rules on Surinder Singh”

  1. Under the new rules, would anyone know what is the expected outcome if the entry clearance officer is not convinced that my centre of British life was not transferred to the EEA state. Would my legal dependent be denied entry automatically? If so, can I exercise my right of appeal at the port of entry so that my dependent is allowed into the UK while the appeal is being considered? Thanks

    1. According to the Home Office Document Chapter 9 ECIS, at 2.6 Regulation 27 – out of country appeals. it appears that you would have to appeal out of country, unless you are already in the country…

      Regulation 27 deals with the out of country right of appeal for EEA nationals. It states:
      27(1) Subject to paragraphs 2 and 3, a person may not appeal under Regulation 26 whilst he is in the United Kingdom against an EEA decision –
      to refuse to admit him to the United Kingdom
      to refuse to revoke a deportation order made against him;
      to refuse to issue him with an EEA family permit.
      To remove him from the United Kingdom after he has entered or sought to enter the United Kingdom in breach of a deportation order.
      (2) Paragraph (1)(a) does not apply where
      The person held an EEA family permit, a registration certificate, a registration card, a document certifying permanent residence or a permanent residence card on his arrival in the United Kingdom, or can otherwise prove that he is resident in the United Kingdom;
      The person is deemed not to have been admitted to the United Kingdom under Regulation 22(3) but at the date on which notice of decision to refuse to admit him is given he has been in the United Kingdom for at least three months. [This covers people who have been given Temporary Admission (TA) at Port, but whom we later decide not to admit. The ECJ case of Yiadam [2001] C-357/98 provided that, where the appellant had been in the UK for several months on TA, we could not rely on the fact that, legally, he had not been admitted to the UK to deny him an in-country right of appeal]
      The person is in the United Kingdom and a ground of the appeal is that, in taking the decision, the decision maker acted in breach of the appellant’s rights under the Human Rights Convention or the Refugee Convention, unless the Secretary of State certifies that the ground of appeal is clearly unfounded.
      (3) Paragraphs (1)(d) does not apply where a ground of the appeal is that, in taking the decision, the decision-maker acted in breach of the appellant’s human rights under the Human Rights Convention or the Refugee Convention, unless the Secretary of State certifies that that ground of appeal is clearly unfounded.
      Thus, the appellant’s right of appeal will only be able to be exercised from outside the UK in the following circumstances:
      Refusal to admit an applicant to the UK (subject to Yiadam)
      Refusal to revoke a deportation order
      Refusal to issue an EEA family permit.
      Appeal brought on asylum or human rights grounds but is certified by us.
      If Presenting Officers think that they have an appeal that falls under Regulation 27 but the appellant is in the UK, they should seek the advice of a Senior Caseworker.

  2. hi

    above you mention ‘replace your EHIC with the local EHIC.’ do you know how we can do this?

    i’ve seen people talking about closing bank accounts and opening up new ones in the other EU country…does anyone else think that’s necessary?

    1. Clive, I live in Ireland. I definately think its a wise idea to open a bank account in any country you intend to live in, for the following reasons:
      * It’s cheaper (crazy fees, commission, and crap exchange rates on cards)
      * It gives you proof of address in the host country (open a joint account)
      * You will need to cut ties with the home state, so as the host state considers you habitually resident. I have heard people fail to get Child Benefit for retaining a British bank account (three months, and we’re still waiting for our child benefit claim in Ireland)

      As for the EHIC, take a look at Healthcare in Ireland. Each country is different. It is also worth noting that once you begin working in the host state, if your intended stay is for over 12 months, then that host state should cover your healthcare. Not the UK. (In Ireland you cannot switch your EHIC unless you intend to remain for at least 12 months – and you need documentary evidence such as work contracts, tenancy agreements ETC to verify this claim). The form is pretty simple though, and can be downloaded online from the HSE Website: About EHIC. You must apply in person at your Local Health Office if this is your first EHIC/Medical Card.

  3. Dear Wayne

    I have a small question.Laws have been changed on surrinder singh route recently. Do you know how long someone have to live in any other country to fulfil the treaty rights. And also if they reject your application then can you apply against the decision in EU courts? Many thanks for your time.

    1. The recent (April) judgment of O and B (C-456/12) outlines that at least three months is required to place yourselves as beneficiaries of EU law.

      I highly recommend reading Colin Yeo’s post on Free Movement:

      I also recommend stating that your centre of life is in XXX member state – outlining the reasons for this. IE:

      British Citizen’s support letter to include:

      “My centre of life has been in Ireland. As you will see from the evidence supplied, my home, family and business has been in Ireland.”

      I also recommend including any relevant reasons for returning to the UK:

      “We have decided to return to the UK because… I have been offered a job as xxx with the company xxx. You will find enclosed a copy of my letter / email with this job offer.”

      All relevant points must be considered when assessing your right to residence in accordance with regulation 9.

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