On 23 June 2016, the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union. The uncertainty surrounding Brexit has created a number of challenges for our clients. A large technology company was concerned about what implications Brexit would have on their workforce. The client has over 1,000 employees who will be directly impacted by Brexit. Our client concluded that a ‘No Deal’ or ‘Hard Brexit’ would severely damage their workforce and the business.
PwC and the client engaged to create and implement an EU mobility programme. We identified the risks involved in each Brexit scenario and presented this to the client along with the various options available to EEA nationals in the UK.
The client decided to support all EEA employees and their family members with a Permanent Residency (PR) or Registration Certificate (QP) application. We worked with PwC’s National Immigration team and resourced a ten person team from within Immigration Support Services to take each assignee and their family through the end to end application process.
We set up a hotline which was available from 7am to 9pm each day to answer any assignee queries. Our client works in a very demanding field so we organised for council officials to attend the clients offices to certify passports and submit applications directly to Home Office. This saved their employees the hassle of taking time off to attend local council appointments. To date, we have a 100% success rate on over 400 applications.
For the past 2 years, PwC has been closely monitoring Brexit negotiations and we have updated the project on numerous occasions in light of EU/UK talks. The UK government recently announced the introduction of a new scheme called ‘Settled Status’. All EEA nationals in the UK will have to register post Brexit.
However, those who already hold ‘PR’ and ‘QP’ will be able to exchange this for ‘Settled Status’ and ‘Pre Settled Status’ in a simpler cost free process. This was great news for PwC and the client as it meant the pro active approach we took had paid off. We will continue to work with our client post Brexit to ensure they are well equipped to deal with whatever the future brings.
Business Operations Lead, PwC United Kingdom
Tel: +44 07711562068