Britain will exit the European Union in one month, fulfilling the mandate set by the public in June 2016 when 52 percent of the country voted to leave the EU. By January 31, the Article 50 process will be completed and the UK will no longer be a member state of the EU. But what privileges will British citizens still enjoy across the EU despite not being a member any longer?
British citizens, like other citizens around the world, are still able to travel to any EU member state up to December 31, 2020, with no impediments such as visas.
After that time, it is likely that visa-free trips will continue for stays of up to 90 days.
The European health insurance card which provides health cover for tourists in another member state also still applies for this period.
After which time, a new deal about these rights and the conditions for entry will be discussed.
Those wishing to take advantage of working abroad for a brief stint, such as the summer, will still be able to enjoy this perk.
During the transition period, students and any other workers will still have the right to work in another member state, because of freedom of movement rules, which includes freedom of movement of labour.
These rules and regulations about movement still exist while the UK is in the single market.
Freedom of movement is likely to end on December 31.
You are also still able to apply for full-time employment in the EU, however, it is possible barriers to entry for these overseas opportunities will be increased post-Brexit.
For many Britons who have worked throughout their lives in the dreary weather of the UK, retiring to sunnier climes is a dream.
Anyone wishes to undertake retirement in another EU country will still be able to do so.
As part of the withdrawal agreement, British citizens who are settled, whether working or retired, in the EU before the end of the transition period will retain most of their rights as EU citizens for the remainder of their lives.
The key rights have yet to be negotiated but will determine the continued rights afforded to British persons settled in the EU who have moved for work, leisure or retirement within the EU.
Social security and pensions
In the post-Brexit world, a UK national living abroad during retirement will be subject to the host country’s immigration policies regarding their pensions.
In the EU, social security contributions are co-ordinated which means someone who has worked in more than one member state can make just one application to the relevant agency where they are living when they reach pension age.
That agency notifies any other EU state where the individual has worked, and the national insurance contribution that he/she paid there becomes part of the pension.
The UK taxation of overseas pension transfers could change post-Brexit.
Transfers from the UK to non-EU countries have been subject to a 25 percent UK “overseas tax charge” since 2017 and there is no guarantee that tax-free transfers will continue for UK pensioners living in the EU.
According to research, around 17,000 British students have studied in an EU member state, outside of the UK.
As of 2020, most university places for the year on the Erasmus study programme are already allocated, however, there are some places which are still available for further education college students and apprentices who are eligible for work placements of between two weeks to three months.
Negotiations will be undertaken regarding the scheme, but it is believed the Erasmus programme will continue after Brexit.
British citizens will still be able to apply for funding in Horizon2020 programmes during the transition period.
The EU’s Creative Europe funding stream, IPortunus and the UK’s European prize for Literature will remain open to British applications for 2020.
Eligibility will also still apply for European regional development funds and European social funds, which have been important sources for infrastructure and environment developments in rural areas and for many not-for-profit organisations seeking to help people into employment in impoverished areas.