BREXIT immigration implications in Romania

Almost four years after the referendum regarding United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union, the withdrawal process was completed on 31st of January 2020. As a result, the Agreement on the Withdrawal ratified by both parties came into force on 1st of February 2020.

The Agreement of the withdrawal provides for a transition period until 31st of December 2020, during which European Union law will continue to apply in the United Kingdom, and the UK will continue to respect the European acquis, including the EU Trade Policy. Throughout the transition, the UK no longer participates in the decision-making mechanism and is no longer represented in EU institutions but retains all rights and obligations of a Member State. From 1st of January 2021, the United Kingdom will be treated as a third country and its citizens, as third country nationals.

I. Transition Period

Conditions of residence
During the transition period, until 31st of December 2020, there are no changes regarding the requirements of entry into Romania for British citizens and their family members, they continue to receive the same treatment as the citizens of an EU Member State and their family members, in order to be able to travel, live, work or study in Romania, rights arising from the EU legislation on the free movement of citizens.
Registration certificates already issued to British citizens and their family members in accordance with the European regulations on the free movement of persons will be recognised until 31st of December 2021 and the validity of those expiring, will be extended until the same date.

II. Post-Transition Period

i. Arriving in Romania

British citizens
Until the end of the transition period, i.e. 31.12.2020, British citizens do not require a visa to enter Romania, only a valid travel or identity document is required at the border crossing points.

After the end of the transition period (31.12.2020):

  • British citizens, beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement, can enter Romania without a visa only based on a valid travel document and residence permit issued by the General Inspectorate for Immigration. Until new residence permits are obtained, British citizens beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement may enter Romania without a visa or other formalities, based on a valid document issued by the General Inspectorate for Immigration in accordance with the EU law.
  • British citizens that do not benefit of the Withdrawal Agreement, can enter Romania without a visa and they can reside for a period of 90 days during any 180 days.

Family members of British citizens
Family members (the spouse of the beneficiary British citizen and the other family members provided for by law) of British citizens who are beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement may join them at any time after the transition period has been completed. They may be subject to the obligation to apply for a visa to enter Romania, in relation to their nationality and according to the law in force. Such visas shall be issued free of charge, as soon as possible and based on a fast procedure.

Citizens of third countries, family members of British citizens who are beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement, that enter Romania after 31st of December 2020 and who did not have the status of family members until 31st of December 2020, are subject to the national legal visa regime, depending on nationality, according to the regulations in force.
Family members that join British citizens, beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement, after the end of the transition period, may obtain an entry visa which is issued free of charge, as soon as possible and under a fast procedure, if they are not exempted from this obligation according to the law.

ii. Temporary Stay in Romania

British citizens and their family members residing in Romania who wish to remain in the country after the end of the transition period (31st of December 2020) may request an extension of their right of temporary residence in Romania, as beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement, to the territorial formations of the General Inspectorate for Immigration starting from 01.12.2020 until no later than 31.12.2021:

  • British citizens and their family members entering Romania between 01-31.12.2020 may apply within 90 days for an extension of the right of temporary residence in Romania, as beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement, to the territorial formations of the General Inspectorate for Immigration;
  • Family members who join the British citizen beneficiary of the Withdrawal Agreement, from 01.01.2021 until 30.09.2021 may request an extension of the right of temporary residence in Romania until 31.12.2021;
  • Family members who join the British citizen beneficiary of the Withdrawal Agreement as of 01.10.2021, are obliged to request an extension of the right of residence within maximum 90 days from the date of entry to Romania, to the territorial formations of the General Inspectorate for Immigration.

Residence permit
Upon entering Romania, as beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement, these citizens have to apply for the residence permit within a maximum period of 90 days.

For the extension of the right of residence (obtaining a residence permit), as a beneficiary of the Withdrawal Agreement, the following documents shall be submitted:

  • border crossing document (passport, travel document, etc.);
  • proof of valid health insurance;
  • proof of legal ownership of the living space;
  • proof of financial means.

Terms for the residence permit
The application for the right of residence or extension shall be settled within 30 days of the date of the submission. In cases where additional checks are required, the time limit for settling the application may be extended with maximum 15 days.
The validity of the temporary residence permits shall be 5 years from the issuance date.
The residence permit shall be renewed with at least 30 days before the expiry of the previous one.

iii. Permanent Stay in Romania

British citizens and their family members, beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement, who have obtained by 31.12.2020, the right of permanent residence in Romania, are still granted this right only if they request a permanent residence permit by latest 31.12.2021.
The necessary documents for issuance of the permanent residence permit shall be:

  • border-crossing document;
  • criminal records certificate or a document of the same legal value, issued by the authorities of the State of domicile or residence;
  • proof of the living space.

Conditions for recognition of the right of permanent residence
The right of permanent residence shall be recognised, upon request, by applicants who, at the time of the settlement of the application, have a right of temporary residence in Romania and fulfil the following conditions cumulatively:

  • have had the right of temporary residence in Romania continuously in the last 5 years prior to the application;
  • provide proof of financial means equal to the minimum gross salary guaranteed in Romania;
  • provide proof of legal ownership of the living space, in accordance with the law;
  • does not pose a danger to national security;
  • does not pose a threat to public order.
    British citizens and their family members, beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement applying for recognition of the right of permanent residence, must submit an application for a permanent residence permit to the territorial formation of the General Inspectorate for Immigration of the place of residence.

Permanent residence for minors
British citizens and their family members, beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement, may apply for the right of permanent residence for minor children only if they are beneficiaries of that right.

The validity of permanent residence permits shall be of 10 years from the date of issuance, except for those issued to persons up to 14 years of age whose validity is 5 years from the date of issuance.

iv. Obligations and Sanctions

British citizens and their family members, beneficiaries of the Withdrawal Agreement, have the following obligations:

  • to comply with the Romanian legislation during their stay in Romania;
  • to not remain in Romania beyond the period for which their stay has been approved, as well as to do all the necessary diligence to leave Romania until that respective date;
  • to declare, within 30 days, to the territorial formation of the General Inspectorate for Immigration which granted them the right of residence, the following:
    – any change in the personal situation, in particular the change of name, nationality, domicile or residence, termination, dissolution or marriage cancellation, birth or adoption of a child, death of a family member on the territory of Romania;
    – validity extension or change of the state border-crossing document;
  • to apply for a new residence permit if they change their name, nationality, domicile or residence once the change in their personal situation has been declared;
  • to declare, within 48 hours, to the competent territorial police department, the theft or loss of state border-crossing documents or identity documents.
    Failure to comply with the legal term for declaring theft, loss, damage, or destruction of the residence permit is considered contravention and shall be sanctioned with fine according to the law in force, amounting between Ron 100 – 500.

Source:
GEO no. 204/2020 on the establishment of measures for the implementation of the Agreement on the withdrawal of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland from the European Union and the European Atomic Energy Community, regarding the regulation of the right of entry and stay in Romania, in force on 01.12.2020, published in the Official Gazette, Part I no. 1132 from 25.11.2020, with the applicable form on 03.12.2020

Contact an Advisor

If you have any questions regarding this topic and how it might have an impact on your business, please contact the Mirus Consultant with whom you regularly work, or:

Anda Soricianu

  • Global Mobility
  • Bucharest
  • + 40 (31) 405 10 17