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More than 5,000 Estonians apply to stay in UK after Brexit

The UK government is urging people to get ready for Brexit.
The UK government is urging people to get ready for Brexit. Source: gov.uk/brexit

More than 5,000 Estonians have applied to stay in the United Kingdom after the country leaves the European Union, newly released figures show.

The UK's Home Office releases data each month which shows how many European Union nationals have applied for the settled status scheme which will allow them to legally stay in the country.

Statistics released this week for September show that, in total, 5,300 Estonians have applied for the scheme, and 1,300 of those applications were made in the month of September.

An application is not a registration, and the right to stay is not automatically granted unless supporting paperwork can be provided.

Successful application or rejection rates are not provided by nationality.

It's difficult to estimate exactly how many Estonians live in the United Kingdom and how many will be affected by the ending of freedom of movement. The Estonian government estimates that there is a 15,000-strong community but many of these could be of Estonian origin and hold two passports. Or they could already have permanent residency.

In total 1,860,200 people have applied to stay in the UK, and 520,600 of those applications were made in September.

The Home Office says: "Overall, the total number of applications that have been concluded, as of 30 September 2019, was more than 1.5 million (1,524,500). Of these, 61 percent were granted settled status, 38 percent were granted pre-settled status, and two applications were refused on suitability grounds."

The scheme is a digital system which allows EU, EEA and Swiss citizens who are resident in the UK to obtain, free of charge, settled status or pre-settled status in the UK.

The United Kingdom is supposed to leave the European Union on Oct. 31.


The Settled Status scheme opened in March, below are the applications submitted by Estonians. Data sets for all nationalities can be found here.

Testing phase (28 August 2018 to 29 March 2019) - 800

April - 1,300

May - 500

June - 300

July - 300

August - 800

September - 1,300

Total:  5,300

* Rounded to the nearest 100


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Editor: Helen Wright

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