Accession States: EU1 Country, Croatia (Part 3 of 3): Today is my last blog post explaining the rights of Accession Member States. In my last two blog posts I’ve given you an overview of rights of all Accessions States and explained the importance of complying with all the rules imposed by the UK on these members states.

Today’s post is dedicated to the third wave known as EU1 wave. It consists of nationals of Croatia. This is the only country among all other accession states, which remains in transitional period to date.

Croatia joined the EU on 1 July 2013.

From this date Croatian citizens became European Economic Area (EEA) nationals and like all EEA and Swiss nationals can enter and live in the UK. However if Croatian nationals wish to reside in the UK for longer than 3 months as workers, they will need to get a permission from the Home Office. In other words they will have the same restrictions to work as all other visa nationals in this country.

 

Croations will be exempt from such a requirements if they wish to continue residing in the UK as:

  • self-employed persons
  • self-sufficient persons or
  • students

It is important to note that all EEA students will need to prove that they are self-sufficient. There is no legal distinction between self-sufficient and student. That is only apart from the fact that students will need to also provide evidence confirming that they are studying and they can only bring their spouses and dependent children as their family members to the UK. Whereas self-sufficient persons can invite direct and extended family members to join them in the UK.

Also, in the judgment in the case of Lassal (C-162/09) it was confirmed that time spent in a host member state by nationals of an accession state can count towards the qualifying period for a right of permanent residence provided the residence:

  • was in line with domestic (UK) law
  • satisfied the conditions of the relevant European law

What does this judgement means for all nationals of accession member states? It means that if they resided in the UK before their country joined the EU and resided lawfully, all time spent in the UK maybe counted for the purposes of acquiring Permanent Right to Reside in the UK, which is a fantastic news for many people in this situation.

Accession States: EU1 Country, Croatia (Part 3 of 3)