What does Brexit mean for the citizens who are particularly affected?
This page contains information on what Brexit will mean for particularly affected citizens, namely Swedish and other European Union citizens living in the United Kingdom and UK citizens living in Sweden or another EU Member State.
The main scenario is an orderly withdrawal based on the negotiated Withdrawal Agreement. However, in view of the ongoing approval process, there is a clear risk of a no-deal withdrawal, which is why contingency planning to handle such an eventuality needs to be in place.
Handling the particularly affected citizens is a clear part of the contingency planning for a no-deal withdrawal being conducted at the Government Offices, in close cooperation with the relevant government agencies.
What will a no-deal withdrawal mean for Swedish citizens resident in the United Kingdom?
For Swedish and other EU citizens resident in the UK, the terms will primarily be determined by decisions taken by the UK. The UK Government has made clear pledges on the rights of this group even after a no-deal withdrawal, including in a policy paper from 6 December. The Swedish Government is following developments closely.
Efforts to make it easier for this group are also under way in Sweden. The coordination of social protection systems in the EU entitle certain Swedish citizens in the UK to a number of Swedish benefits. This includes child allowance, parental benefits and the guarantee pension. The Government is working on measures that, during a transition period, will allow the continued payment of these benefits to the group in question. Within the framework of these measures, it will also be possible to combine periods of work or residency in the UK and Sweden as the basis for an application for benefits. Moreover, it will be possible to receive compensation for costs for health care conducted in the UK.
What will a no-deal withdrawal mean for UK citizens resident in Sweden?
With regard to UK citizens living in Sweden with a right of residence under EU law, the Swedish Government’s preparations are directed at making it possible for these people to remain in Sweden on similar terms. Thus, directly after the withdrawal, these citizens would be able to continue to live and work in Sweden and have access to social security, health and medical care, and education. Such an approach is in line with the measures recommended by the European Commission.
In the EU, a modification of the Visa Regulation is being drawn up with the aim of granting UK citizens visa exemption for shorter visits to the Schengen area.
Changes to Swedish regulations to handle citizens’ rights in the event of a no-deal withdrawal
The Swedish legislative amendments being prepared that concern citizens are listed below under each responsible ministry.
Ministry of Justice
Ministry of Health and Social Affairs
Ministry of Education and Research
Ministry of Enterprise and Innovation
European Commission’s fact sheet for citizens if no agreement is reached
The handling of citizens’ rights in the orderly scenario under the withdrawal agreement
If the UK leaves the EU on the basis of the negotiated Withdrawal Agreement, which is currently subject to approval processes, citizens’ rights will be regulated by the provisions contained in the agreement.
The Withdrawal Agreement’s chapter on citizens means that their situation changes very little. The agreement covers all of the issues that concern citizens in their everyday lives, i.e. residence rights and social security benefits, such as social insurance, health and medical care, pensions, unemployment insurance, student grants and various forms of family benefits. Recognition of certificates of education and other professional qualifications is also covered.
Under the agreement, Swedish and other EU citizens can continue to live, work, study and retire in the UK. Even those who have recently moved to the UK are covered, as well as those who move there before the end of 2020, when the transition period is due to end. Equivalent provisions apply to UK citizens in Sweden.