Revealed: UK poised to let one million EU temporary migrants stay after Brexit – Telegraph.co.uk
The EU side is demanding that any EU citizen who arrives in Britain up until Brexit day in March 2019 should be granted full rights, but Britain fears this could provoke a last-minute rush into the country by EU nationals seeking residency.
Even so, officials say that the UK “has not ruled out” conceding this to the EU as a goodwill gesture that will enable EU residents to fairly make plans for the future.
Whatever date is finally agreed upon, figures from the Oxford-based Migration Observatory estimate that there are some 975,000 EU migrants who will be in the UK who have not met the five-year residency test. Even so, this group will be allowed to remain under the plans.
Officials said that the four key planks of the UK offer would enable the vast majority of EU migrants to carry on their lives in the UK uninterrupted.
Britain will, however, stick to several red lines during the talks on Citizens’ Rights, most notably refusing to submit to EU demands that the European Court of Justice should be the ultimate arbiter of any Article 50 agreement.
Instead, the UK side is expected to argue that any EU-UK agreement should be policed as part of a future bilateral framework to regulate and settle disputes that arise in future relations between London and the 27 remaining EU member states.
The UK will also balk at any attempts by the EU to create a “special class” of EU citizens after Brexit who enjoy better rights than UK citizens, or tie the hands of future governments who want to amend rights and benefits.
“We can’t have a situation where, if the UK government changed the rules on, say child benefit, then EU citizens would end up with better rights than UK citizens. That is clearly not fair,” the source added.
This is expected to include removing the rights of EU migrants to claim child benefit for children who are not living in Britain, and removing the automatic right of EU migrants to bring non-EU spouses into Britain – something Theresa May fought against in her time as Home Secretary.