Brexit ‘no-deal’ preparedness: Final Commission call to all EU citizens and businesses to prepare for the UK’s withdrawal on 31 October 2019

Brexit ‘no-deal’ preparedness: Final Commission call to all EU citizens and businesses to prepare for the UK’s withdrawal on 31 October 2019

With all eyes on events in the UK Parliament yesterday it’s easy to lose sight of the seriousness of  which the EU is taking the risk of the UK leaving the European Union with no deal in place. There currently appears, from press reports to be no alternative proposals on the table and therefore the risk of no deal would seem high.

With 8 weeks to go until the United Kingdom’s withdrawal from the European Union on 31 October 2019, yesterday the Commission reiterated its call on all stakeholders in the EU27 to prepare for a ‘no-deal’ scenario. In light of the continued uncertainty in the United Kingdom regarding the ratification of the Withdrawal Agreement – as agreed with the UK government in November 2018 – and the overall domestic political situation, a ‘no-deal’ scenario on 1 November 2019, remains a possible, although undesirable, outcome.

Therefore the European Commission has published a detailed checklist to help those businesses that trade with the UK to make final preparations. In order to minimise disruption to trade. The EU is advising all parties involved in supply chains with the UK – regardless of where they are based – to be aware of their responsibilities and the necessary formalities in cross-border trade. This builds on previous Communications and 100 stakeholder notices, which cover a broad range of sectors.

Full details can be read below:

diverging uk-eu


Meanwhile specific guidance has been issued by the European Commission to EU citizens residing in the UK and UK nationals living in the EU. Please use the link below to download the fact sheets.



Registering to Vote in UK Elections; if you live in the EU

Registering to Vote in UK Elections; if you live in the EU

With talk of a possible early General Election in the UK it is important that eligible voters are registered and take part in the democratic process. UK nationals who live abroad, including in the EU can register to vote if they meet the following criteria:

  • you’re a British or eligible Irish citizen
  • you were registered to vote in the UK within the previous 15 years (or, in some cases, if you were too young to have registered when you left the UK)

If you want to vote in England, Scotland or Wales, register to vote in the normal way.

If you want to vote in Northern Ireland, you need to register by post.

You have to renew your registration every year. You’ll get a reminder when it’s time to renew.

Follow the link below to start your online registration. You will need:

  • your National Insurance number
  • your passport if you’re a British citizen living abroad, and want to vote in England, Scotland or Wales


EU measures to tackle hate speech.

EU measures to tackle hate speech.

The European Union continues to measure the effectiveness of its  “Code of conduct on countering illegal hate speech online.”

In May 2016 the EU agreed the Code of Conduct with Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter and YouTube. Since then Instagram, Google+, Snapchat, Dailymotion and all indicated their intention to follow the code.

You can read more about the monitoring of the code and ongoing actions to reduce online hate speech by following the link below that also includes fact sheets.

Follow the #NoPlace4Hate on social media.

EU Progress on Hate Speech



Grants for East Midlands Community Organisations to Support Unemployed

Grants for East Midlands Community Organisations to Support Unemployed

Part funded by the European Social Fund Futures are now making grants available to organisation with a turnover of less than £500,000. This is increased from the previous figure of £300,000 and significantly increases the number of eligible organisation.

The grants of between £5,000 to £20,000 are being made available to organisation that can achieve the following outcomes.

  • initial help with basic skills
  • taster work experience including voluntary work
  • training, advice and counselling
  • confidence building
  • job search assistance and other help necessary to secure employment
  • first contact engagement activities

Eligible Learners must be:

  • Unemployed
  • Over 16
  • Have the right to live and work in the UK
  • Not engaged in any other government funded training scheme

Priority will be given to applications that demonstrate an ability to meet the LEP Priorities and target participants who are:

  • Over 50
  • With Learning Difficulties and Disabilities
  • From Ethnic Minority Backgrounds
  • Are women
  • Unemployed for over 6 months
  • Furthest removed from the labour market with significant barriers to employment

The next round of applications runs from 15th Nov 2019 – 15th Dec 2019.

To find out more, download the application form, full criteria and guidance follow the Futures link below:


August Newsletter

August Newsletter

At Europe Direct East Midlands (North) we are seeing a surge of interest with visits to our website up and increasing numbers contacting our helpline and Walk-in Centre for information and help with the EU settlement Scheme.Whilst politicians in the UK and EU contemplate Brexit ahead of MPs return to Parliament after the summer recess, we take stock of citizens rights.

Political announcements often add to the uncertainty, only today we received an enquiry from a couple, one an Australian national and the other a German citizen who have brought forward their move to the UK fearing that they will not be able to do this so easily after 31st October. In our newsletter we try to provide some clarity and reassurance. The message is don’t panic but do take the necessary steps to secure your citizenship rights.

In the meantime business goes on in the EU with actions to protect our banking and consumer rights, the environment and our European cultures. We hope that you find our newsletter informative.

Next month we hope to bring you more updates on Brexit as well as the work of the European Union’s institutions and general information articles.

Newsletter visual

EU Settlement Scheme – Support for applicants in Nottingham and the East Midlands

With the UK Government recently announcing that they intend to end freedom of movement on 31st October we felt it would be timely to make EU citizens aware of the help that is available.


It is worth stating that should freedom of movement end on 31st October 2019 EU citizens who have lived or arrived in the UK before that date have until the 31st December 2020 to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme.

The Withdrawal Agreement incorporates citizens rights. In Chapter 1 under Rights and Obligations,  rights related to residence and residence documents, the Agreement requires the UK to continue freedom of movement as if it were still a full member of the European Union for the transitional period. The UK Government would only be able to end freedom of movement on 31st October if there were no deal.

A report by the Oxford University’s Migration Observatory  states that the UK cannot end freedom of movement on 31st October for a number of reasons.


We are however advising EU citizens to get their paperwork in order and apply to the EU Settlement Scheme now. You can start this process by following the link below.

application process

The process is designed so that most people can apply themselves. However if you need assistance help is on hand. Nottingham Law Centre hold one of the Home Office contracts to assist vulnerable EU citizens who are not able make an application without some help and guidance.

Contact us on  01773 532291 for more information. We offer appointments at our Walk-in Centre. Details HERE.

For an appointment with Nottingham Law Centre’s service telephone 07834 264 950. They also run a free European Settlement Hub in Hyson Green every Friday.


We can also provide help at our Europe Direct Walk-in Centre. Contact us on  01773 532291 for more information or get more details HERE.

Help is also available across the East Midlands from Migrant Help. Details below.

can be found HERE.

Citizens Advice have updated advice on their website. They are now advising EU citizens wishing to remain in the UK to apply for pre-settled or settled status now so that their status is confirmed.

citizens advice

Bank Accounts in the EU

Bank Accounts in the EU

If you are legally resident in an EU country you are entitled to open a “basic payment account”. Banks cannot refuse your application for a basic payment account just because you don’t live in the country where the bank is established.

Features of a basic account

A “basic payment account” is an account that covers standard transactions that you use in daily life, such as:

  • making deposits
  • withdrawing cash
  • receiving and carrying out payments (for example direct debits and card purchases)

It should also include a payment card that you can use to withdraw cash and make purchases – both online and in shops.

Where available, the bank should include access to online banking services with your account. However, they do not always have to include an overdraft or credit facility.

In some EU countries, your bank might still charge you an annual fee for this basic payment account. This fee should remain reasonable.

However please be aware that:

  • This right does not apply to other types of accounts such as savings accounts.
  • You may still be charged a fee if you close your account.

You are advised to read the full report on before taking out an account. the link is below: