The result of the recent EU referendum was a shock for many people – and it was a close run thing. Now that the initial confusion has begun to clear and Britain begins to understand just what the impact and implications of this decision are, now that our new government has taken shape and we can start planning our future, what will happen to EU workers who are currently employed by British companies?
Really, the final decision depends on what negotiations between Britain and the rest of the EU result in as to whether these workers’ right will change. It all depends on the exit terms that need to be worked out once Article 50 is triggered.
But there are some ideas about what might happen.
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The first scenario is that those who are already employed within the UK by British companies can remain working here with no changes to their employment and no additional restrictions. Which would of course be the best situation for the workers, and potentially for their employers too. Alternatively, EU workers may have additional entry restrictions imposed – they could be the same as the ones that non-EU workers are subject to currently. This would mean that EU workers would need to apply for permission to stay from the British government, and that they would only have a limited time to do so before they could be deported.
It is a good idea for employers of EU workers to have a contingency plan in place just in case this latter option comes into force. There will need to be proof that these workers were employed before the ‘Brexit’ actually takes place.
To be fair to those already working here, if restrictions are imposed on EU workers then it will most likely not affect those who were living and working here before the country leaves the EU. It will – should – be solely for those seeking work once the exit has actually happened.