Guidelines on the Treatment of Beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement

Guidelines on the Treatment of Beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement

The withdrawal agreement between the United Kingdom (UK) and the European Union (EU) outlines the rights and protections for EU citizens in the UK, and UK citizens in the EU, who have benefitted from the free movement of people as EU members. These individuals, referred to as beneficiaries, may include students, workers, retirees, and their family members. It is essential that the treatment of these beneficiaries is in line with the withdrawal agreement and respects their rights as outlined in the agreement.

Here are some guidelines on the treatment of beneficiaries of the withdrawal agreement:

1. Non-Discrimination: Beneficiaries of the withdrawal agreement should not face any discrimination based on nationality or any other grounds. This includes access to employment, healthcare, education, social benefits, and other public services. Employers, landlords, and service providers must not discriminate against beneficiaries based on their EU citizenship.

2. Documentation: Beneficiaries must have access to documentation that proves their status under the withdrawal agreement. This documentation will enable them to continue to enjoy the rights and protections they are entitled to, such as the right to work and reside in the UK or EU. The UK government has introduced the EU Settlement Scheme, which allows eligible individuals to apply for settled or pre-settled status. The EU has also provided guidance on the necessary documentation for UK citizens in the EU.

3. Family Members: The withdrawal agreement provides protection for the family members of beneficiaries, who may be from a non-EU country. Family members should be allowed to join their EU citizen family member in the UK or EU, and should be granted the same rights and protections as the beneficiary.

4. Continuity: The rights and protections provided to beneficiaries of the withdrawal agreement must be respected and continued without interruption. The withdrawal agreement provides for a transitional period until December 31, 2020, during which beneficiaries can continue to enjoy their rights. The UK government has also committed to honoring the withdrawal agreement in UK law and has provided guidance on the rights of beneficiaries after the transitional period.

5. Awareness: It is essential that beneficiaries of the withdrawal agreement are aware of their rights and the necessary steps to take to ensure they can continue to enjoy these rights. Governments, employers, and service providers in the UK and EU should provide clear information and guidance on the withdrawal agreement and the necessary steps for beneficiaries to take.

In conclusion, the treatment of beneficiaries of the withdrawal agreement is vital to ensure their rights and protections are upheld. By following these guidelines, we can ensure a smooth transition for beneficiaries and avoid any discrimination or interruption to their rights.