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Final call for Britons in Belgium to secure their residency rights post-Brexit

Post-Brexit residency for Britons in Belgium (c) Shutterstock
13:31 03/12/2021

The British Embassy in Belgium has made a final appeal to Britons to apply for their new M card by 31 December, the deadline facing all UK nationals registered as living in Belgium before 1 January 2021.

The British Embassy in Belgium is encouraging all its nationals to apply if they have not already done so. Said ambassador Martin Shearman: “With just one month until the deadline, ensuring you have applied for residency is a matter of urgency in order to protect your rights to live in Belgium and your future.”

He also broadcast a wider appeal to people living in Belgium. “Those of you who have British friends, neighbours or family members who arrived in Belgium before 1 January, you should ask them whether they have applied and, if not, encourage them to start the process now.”

According to Belgian statistical office Statbel, of the 18,574 people registered as British on this date, only 8,387 of them had applied for permanent residency by the end of November.

Ambassador Shearman appears in a video published on social media alongside British ambassadors in other EU countries facing the same pressing deadline. They call on UK Nationals to take immediate action.

The Brussels British Community Association (BBCA) echoes the appeal. “British citizens in Belgium need to act now to preserve their right to remain in the country,” said president Glenn Vaughan. “Do not leave it until the last moment.”

Since the Brexit referendum in 2016, the British Embassy in Belgium has been campaigning for UK Nationals to apply for residency. It invites them to visit the site for more information and to sign up for email alerts for the latest updates.

Written by Sarah Crew