Extended Family Members of EEA Nationals, Comparing 2 and 3:

Extended Family Members of EEA Nationals, Comparing 2 and 3
Extended Family Members of EEA Nationals, Comparing 2 and 3

In my previous videos, I’ve explained the very important difference between direct and extended family members and also clarified the rules for all direct family members and explained the necessary conditions for categories 1,2 and 3 on the extended family group.

I’ve created this special video to explain the crucial difference between categories 2 and 3 of the extended family group. This difference may not seem obvious at first. This is because both groups are there to assist extended family members of EEA nationals, to be reunited with each other in the UK. This is when they have a serious medical condition and need the EEA national to look after them.

The best way to explain the difference is to give you an example:

Jose is a national of Spain, living and working in the UK. His 25-year old brother Miguel lives in Brazil. Miguel is mentally ill and Miguel’s and Jose’s grandmother Bonita was looking after Miguel on a full-time basis. Sadly, Bonita died a few days ago and there is no one to look after Miguel.


Let us compare Category 2 and Category 3 routes to see what Jose will need to prove in order to bring Miguel over to the UK.

We’ll start with the definition of a relative. For category No2, which is interpreted under EU law, the term ‘relative’ includes brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews, etc.

This list is not complete. There is no limit on the distance of the relationship between the EEA national and the extended family member. This is as long as they can provide valid proof of the relationship between them. For example, you can also include those related by marriage and further generations of the above relatives such as great-aunts, great-nephews and second cousins etc.

Now, if we look at the definition of a relative in Category 3, which is interpreted under domestic Immigration Rules, the EEA national’s relatives in this category can only be:

(a) a parent aged 18 years or over;

(b) a grandparent;

(c) a brother or sister aged 18 years or over; or

(d) a son or daughter aged 18 years or over.


To this means that if Miguel was, for example, Jose’s nephew, he would automatically be disqualified to apply in Category 3.


In order for Miguel to join Jose in the UK under category 2, all that Jose needs to prove is:

  1. The fact that Miguel strictly requires the personal care of Jose due to Miguel’s serious health grounds and that
  2. Jose is a qualified person (in other words that he is working or is self-employed or self-sufficient).

However, if Miguel chooses to join Jose under category 3, in addition to proving his severe medical condition, he also needs to show that Jose was unable to find someone to look after Miguel in Brazil. Alternatively, he needs to prove that that type of care was not affordable to Jose.

In practice, this condition is challenging to satisfy. Especially when a relative lives in a country, which is not expensive in comparison to the UK. Additionally, Jose will have to provide the Immigration authorities with a number of documents confirming his financial credibility as well as the fact that will be able to adequately accommodate Miguel. As you may remember, there is no such requirement in category no2.

This example clearly shows the difference between the two categories. It also proves the fact that the threshold for category No3 is significantly higher than for category No2. Therefore you should always aim at applying under category 2. This is because there are less conditions to satisfy and less documents to provide.

Extended Family Members of EEA Nationals, Comparing 2 and 3