British nationals living in Norway before December 31st 2020, will have until the end of this year to apply for a post-Brexit residency card that will allow them to continue to live and work in the country.
The Norwegian Directorate of Immigration (UDI) has said that so far, 18,223 British citizens have applied for a permit or residency card according to the Separation Agreement. So far, decisions have been made in 11,652 applications. According to the UDI, only a minimal amount of applications have been rejected, which were primarily applications from family members of British citizens living in Norway.
However, the immigration directorate said it did not have a reliable figure for the total number of British nationals living in Norway.
The UDI said it was processing just over a thousand cases forwarded to them by the police where it is not clear whether the conditions set out under the Brexit regulations have been met.
“So far, no British citizen has had their application for a residence permit rejected under the Brexit regulations. Cases where there is doubt as to whether the conditions have been met have been sent from the police to the UDI for processing. The UDI now has 1,060 cases to process,” Karl Erik Sjøholt from the UDI told news wire NTB.
Everyone who has an application pending will be allowed to stay in Norway until a decision has been made, Sjøholt said.
After the deadline, Brits arriving in Norway or those without residency will be treated as third-country nationals meaning the rules to obtain residence will become tighter.
The process for obtaining residence as a third country resident is a lot more stringent than a resident or citizen of the European Economic Area (EU countries plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, and Norway). This is because a lot more criteria need to be met, such as minimum income in most cases and an application fee.
The UDI said that in some cases, it would be willing to make an exception for those who miss the deadline, providing the applicant had a reasonable reason.
Until you receive your residence card or permit, there are several documents that can be used in their place until they arrive when crossing borders. The receipt for a submitted application will be counted as a suitable substitute until residence is granted and a card or permit issued.
These substitutes for a residence card will be recognised as an alternative proof of residence at EU and Norwegian borders until July 1st 2022.