Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Temporary Forum - Please keep it CIVIL and ON TOPIC regarding updates/ news / concerns on British living / travelling in the EU.
GlennB
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby GlennB » Thu Jan 30, 2020 12:06 pm

Meanwhile, yesterday I read (in The Guardian) that some Brits are rushing to buy and establish residency in places like Spain before the end of 2020, while today I read that "Britons in EU remain fearful of post-Brexit healthcare and pension provisions "

I'd say it might not be the best time to make such a move. Confident statements from here and there about health care need to be weighed against previous statements by HM Govt that were confusing at best and contradictory at worst. And if the UK gets heavy about providing health care to EU expats then I can well see that heaviness being reciprocated.

altohb
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby altohb » Thu Jan 30, 2020 12:19 pm

GlennB wrote:Meanwhile, yesterday I read (in The Guardian) that some Brits are rushing to buy and establish residency in places like Spain before the end of 2020, while today I read that "Britons in EU remain fearful of post-Brexit healthcare and pension provisions "

I'd say it might not be the best time to make such a move. Confident statements from here and there about health care need to be weighed against previous statements by HM Govt that were confusing at best and contradictory at worst. And if the UK gets heavy about providing health care to EU expats then I can well see that heaviness being reciprocated.


The WA, having been signed off all round, is an internationally binding treaty, so there shouldn't be any way that anyone can get "heavy" about healthcare. If you read the excellent summaries produced by British in Europe it is clear that nothing in it can be changed.

BTW - we all owe a debt of gratitude to BiE for their work on behalf of all of us, and I, for one, am extremely grateful for the clarity they have brought to this confused situation.

Kilkis
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby Kilkis » Thu Jan 30, 2020 12:39 pm

I agree with Altohb and I second his thanks to BiE. There has been much confusion because the term "no-deal" was used to mean the UK leaving the EU without a Withdrawal Agreement and is now used to mean the UK not reaching an agreement on the future trade deal. These are separate and distinct legal agreements. Much of the "ifs and buts" were related to the UK leaving without a Withdrawal Agreement.

The Withdrawal Agreement has now been signed and ratified by all relevant parties. It is an international treaty and its terms cannot be violated or altered by either side. It comes into effect at midnight CET, 23:00 GMT, on 31 January 2020. Everything defined in the Withdrawal Agreement is set in stone whatever happens to the negotiations on the future relationship. If the UK and the EU fail to reach an agreement on a future trade deal then trade between them will be on WTO terms but everything defined in the Withdrawal Agreement remains in place. It is worth reading the articles linked by Carol earlier in the thread.

Obviously either party can do whatever they like with people not covered by the Withdrawal Agreement, i.e. people who wish to move between the EU and the UK in either direction after the end of the transition period, i.e. 31 December 2020, or later if the UK changes its mind and asks for an extension to the negotiating period, but it is absolutely binding for citizens who have already moved before the end of the transition period. That includes both people who have already gained permanent residency, i.e. have lived in their host country for more than 5 years, and those that have not yet achieved permanent residency. The procedures may be different for these two groups but the rights are the same.

Warwick

PS There is one very large group that do still have valid concerns, i.e. those working in an EU country who might want to move to work in another EU country. That is not guaranteed.

PPS The second Guardian article is another case of the headline being a bit misleading. It is accurate, in the sense that they asked a lot of Brits and many were still concerned, but the body of the article makes it clear that those concerns are not valid. As usual it is the headline that sticks.

Kilkis
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby Kilkis » Thu Jan 30, 2020 1:31 pm

Part 5 of the series linked by Carol has now been published:

https://britishineurope.org/2020/01/25/ ... t-covered/

Note that while the link is correct and what is printed in the pdf download is correct the title of the pdf document is not correct and appears as BiE-WA-p5-Working-Rights-1.pdf. It should be BiE-WA-p5-What's-Not-Covered.pdf It looks like they have taken part 4 as a template, changed the content to part 5 but not fully changed the title of the document. If you are downloading the pdf documents and saving them to hard disk it might be worthwhile altering the document title.

Warwick

GlennB
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby GlennB » Thu Jan 30, 2020 1:40 pm

I hope you're right, but all references I've seen confirm existing rights to the end of the transition period.

" ... In March, the UK reached an agreement in principle with the EU on an implementation period that would ensure continuation of current reciprocal healthcare rights until 31 December 2020."

"Our priority is to maintain reciprocal healthcare arrangements with Member States (MS) when we leave the EU. That is why the UK Government has proposed consistently to all MS that existing reciprocal healthcare arrangements (under Regulation 883) continue until 31 December 2020 in a no deal scenario." (Sep 2019)
https://www.parliament.uk/business/publ ... /HCWS1832/

I'd be delighted to see any reference to S1 (for example) being respected indefinitely. Why would anybody do that?

Maud
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby Maud » Thu Jan 30, 2020 1:49 pm

From today’s Guardian. The headline is misleading. It looks as if all is well for pensioners.

https://www.theguardian.com/politics/20 ... SApp_Other

Kilkis
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby Kilkis » Thu Jan 30, 2020 1:58 pm

GlennB wrote:I hope you're right, but all references I've seen confirm existing rights to the end of the transition period....


You are looking at ancient references, Glenn. It is absolutely clear in the link posted by Carol: https://britishineurope.org/2020/01/25/ ... -security/ It doesn't seem to permit copy and paste but read page 2. It is absolutely crystal clear. As long as you are legally resident in your host country before the end of the transition period, residency, healthcare under S1 and pension uprating continue for the rest of your life as long as you continue to live there. They would also continue if you located back to the UK. Once you have permanent residency you can leave your host country for up to 5 years without losing that permanent residency so it doesn't then matter how long you are in or out of the country each year. If you have initial residency, i.e. more than 3 months but less than 5 years, you have to remain in the host country for more than 6 months in each year in order to gain permanent residency. One exit for up to 12 months during the 5 years would be allowed if there is a valid reason.

All the uncertainty about healthcare, pensions etc was due to uncertainty about whether there would actually be a Withdrawal Agreement. Now there is a Withdrawal Agreement all that uncertainty has gone.

Warwick

Keltz
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby Keltz » Thu Jan 30, 2020 3:10 pm

When receiving a state pension it is now clear both on the annual uprating of pension and provision of healthcare through the S1 that things will continue for those resident before end of transition period.

However what is less clear are rights of those resident before the end of the transition period but are not yet receiving a state pension. I am not that far away from pension age but will not have reached it before the transition period comes to an end.

altohb
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby altohb » Thu Jan 30, 2020 3:31 pm

Keltz wrote:When receiving a state pension it is now clear both on the annual uprating of pension and provision of healthcare through the S1 that things will continue for those resident before end of transition period.

However what is less clear are rights of those resident before the end of the transition period but are not yet receiving a state pension. I am not that far away from pension age but will not have reached it before the transition period comes to an end.


Same applies, Keltz. See the BiE documents linked by Carolina. I think it is the third one.

bobscott
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby bobscott » Thu Jan 30, 2020 3:35 pm

Keltz wrote:When receiving a state pension it is now clear both on the annual uprating of pension and provision of healthcare through the S1 that things will continue for those resident before end of transition period.

However what is less clear are rights of those resident before the end of the transition period but are not yet receiving a state pension. I am not that far away from pension age but will not have reached it before the transition period comes to an end.


Three important announcements just received from the UK Gov: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/living-in-e ... -in-the-eu


The Withdrawal Agreement secures your rights and allows you to stay in the EU country where you live after 31 January 2020. You will continue to have broadly the same entitlements to work, study and access public services and benefits as before the UK left the EU.

Healthcare

Your current rights to healthcare in your country of residence will remain the same, as long as you remain covered by the Withdrawal Agreement. If the UK pays for your healthcare, for example through the S1 scheme, this is included.

UK-issued European Health Insurance Cards (EHICs) will remain valid in EU countries until the transition period ends on 31 December 2020. If you are travelling to another EU country, you should ensure that you have valid travel insurance.

Pensions and benefits

If you are living in the EU, EEA or Switzerland by 31 December 2020, and if you receive a UK State Pension, it will continue to be uprated as long as you continue to live there. This will happen even if you start claiming your pension on or after 1 January 2021, as long as you meet the qualifying conditions explained in the new State Pension guidance.

If you are living in the EU, EEA or Switzerland by 31 December 2020, you will continue to receive any UK benefits you already receive. This will continue for as long as you live there and meet all other eligibility requirements.

What it does not say, specifically in relation to Healthcare is whether this particular item will continue to apply after 31 December 2020. Strange that it should be quite specific in the case of a State Retirement Pension but not healthcare. Or am I missing something?

Question: in the event of a no-trade deal with the EU by 31 Dec 2020, will the current WA remain in force on 1 January 2021 or will the UK deem it to be null and void? Bob.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

GlennB
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby GlennB » Thu Jan 30, 2020 4:29 pm

Kilkis wrote:
GlennB wrote:I hope you're right, but all references I've seen confirm existing rights to the end of the transition period....


You are looking at ancient references, Glenn. It is absolutely clear in the link posted by Carol: https://britishineurope.org/2020/01/25/ ... -security/ It doesn't seem to permit copy and paste but read page 2. It is absolutely crystal clear.


I'm looking at the WA of Oct 19th, 2019 (the one ratified the other day, afaik), then branching off to specific references within it such as Article19 and 27 of REGULATION (EC) No 883/2004, to which the former refers. But if britishineurope.org is a definitive source then that's fine. We're off back to the UK anyway, for a variety of reasons, so it isn't really a personal worry any more.

Kilkis
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby Kilkis » Thu Jan 30, 2020 6:28 pm

The paragraph in bold at the bottom of the Healthcare Section on page 2 of part 3 of the BiE series makes it totally clear, Bob, that S1 healthcare is for life provided you continue to be covered by the WA, i.e. you continue living in your host country.

The fifth bullet point in the Healthcare Section on page 2 of part 3 of the BiE series makes it totally clear what happens to anybody who is covered by the WA, i.e. is legally resident in their host country before the end of the transition period, but does not hold an S1 because they are not yet of UK State Pension age. There are two possibilities:

    1 If they are early retirees living on their own resources, e.g savings or an occupational pension that became payable before State Pension age, and not working in the host country, or haven't worked in the host country long enough to be eligible for a pension there, they will become entitled to an S1 Form when they do reach State Pension age.
    2 If they are working in the host country, as about 80 % of UK ex-pats are apparently, and they qualify for a pension in the host country when they retire then the host country should be liable for their healthcare.

That mirrors the rules on pensions under REGULATION (EC) No 883/2004.

I understand that BiE are using lawyers to give interpretation of the WA in plain English, Glenn, so the documents linked by Carol should be highly reliable. They have also been very careful, in all parts, to point out the difference between what is in the final WA and what was published before that took into account the possibility of there not being a WA. It is those differences and the fact that the earlier documents are still lying around on the web to be read that leads to most of the confusion. The Citizens' Rights section of the WA is intended to simply continue the rules in REGULATION (EC) No 883/2004 and I am pretty familiar with that. The interpretation given by BiE is in agreement with the rules in REGULATION (EC) No 883/2004.

Don't worry, be happy.

Warwick

Keltz
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby Keltz » Thu Jan 30, 2020 6:36 pm



Cheers, I'm happy now :D

bobscott
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby bobscott » Fri Jan 31, 2020 6:33 pm

Cautiously optimistic! Bob.
Yesterday today was tomorrow. Don't dilly dally!

IzzyWhizz
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Re: Withdrawal Agreement and Our Rights

Postby IzzyWhizz » Sat Feb 01, 2020 2:51 pm

It seems a bewildering array of information. However, some of the UK papers today are updating the information on the rights of UK expats living in the EU (Guardian and Telegraph amongst others). Also, it was reported in KeepTalkingGreece recently that, on Jan 6 this year, a bill was presented to the Greek parliament to specifically deal with UK expats' rights post-Brexit:

"..The Greek foreign ministry’s Brexit bill foresees the following:

Recognition of the right to residency for British citizens and family members who (a) have established residency in Greece up until the withdrawal date (b) will have established residency in Greece by 31 December 2020 (c) those who arrive after 1 January 2021. Also regulated are the conditions of their entry into and exit from the country.
Coordination of British citizens’ social security and healthcare rights.
Recognition of British driving licenses in Greece and their conversion to Greek driver’s licenses.".


Anyone wishing to read the whole report can use the link below:

https://www.keeptalkinggreece.com/2020/ ... pats-bill/

IzzyWhizz


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