Scheme for EU citizens to stay in UK draws 3.4m applications

Government close to target figure, but researchers still fear citizens may be missed out

The Home Office has received 3.4m applications from people seeking to stay in the UK after Brexit under the EU settled status scheme.

It puts the government close to its overall goal for the scheme, with estimates of the number of EU, EEA and Swiss citizens eligible to remain in the country lying between 3.4 million and 3.8 million.

However, monthly data, which was published on Thursday, shows there is still a backlog of 320,000 applications and researchers at Oxford University have warned that many citizens may “fall through the cracks”.

EU citizens in children’s homes, care homes or those who are victims of domestic abuse, where others may not be aware or allow them to apply, have been cited previously as among those at risk.

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