How will Brexit affect British citizens?

Information for British citizens and their family members.

This information will be updated regularly.

The UK has left the EU. British citizens are no longer citizens of the EU, and the UK is no longer a member of the European Economic Area (EEA).

Under the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement, there will be a transition period, during which much will remain the same.

This transition period ends at the end of 2020. Regulations for citizens of countries outside EU/EEU will apply to British citizens wishing to move to Norway after 31 December 2020.

On the website of the Norwegian Directorate of Immigration (UDI), you may find information for UK nationals in Norwegian and English regarding entry, work, residence, family immigration and citizenship.

Detailed information about Norway and Brexit can be found on the Government’s website: regjeringen.no.

The UK Government has also published guidance for UK nationals living in Norway

British citizens coming to Norway after 31 December 2020
British citizens and their family members who wish to come to Norway to live, work or study after 1 January 2021 will be treated according to the rules that apply to citizens of countries outside the EEA/EU. This means that British citizens wishing to work in Norway will need to apply for a residency permit. The same rules will apply for British citizens that are temporary service suppliers. Under the current regime, service providers can come to Norway for work for up to three months without the need to register.

British citizens that are temporary service suppliers that have a contracts or assignments that start in 2020 but end after 1 January 2021, will also have to apply for the residency permit.

More information is available from the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.

Information to British citizens or persons living in the United Kingdom who are board members, corporate assembly members or general managers in Norwegian companies on 1 January 2021:
According to current regulations, the general manager and at least half of the board members in private limited companies, public limited companies and cooperatives registered in Norway must be either resident in Norway, or both citizens of and resident in an EEA State, cf. Section 6-11 of the Private Limited Liability Companies Act, Section 6-11 of the Public Limited Liability Companies Act and Section 75 of the Cooperatives Act. The requirement also applies to members of the corporate assembly, cf. Section 6-36 of the Public Limited Liability Companies Act. According to the Foundations Act, half of the board members must be resident in Norway, or both citizens of and resident in an EEA State, cf. Section 27 of the Foundations Act . In connection with the United Kingdom's withdrawal from the EU and the subsequent transitional period, the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries made temporary amendments to the abovementioned acts in order to equate nationals of and resident in the United Kingdom with persons who are nationals of and resident in an EEA State, cf. Regulation of 10 April 2019 no. 477. The regulation will be repealed on 1 January 2021, when its legal basis, cf. Act of 29 March 2019 no. 9, is repealed.

Until 31 December 2020, British citizens resident in the EEA or the United Kingdom and EEA citizens resident in the United Kingdom will meet the requirements mentioned above. The government is working on an amendment to the relevant acts, which will give persons connected to the United Kingdom the same position as persons connected to the EEA. These changes presuppose the conclusion of a free trade agreement between the United Kingdom and Norway, to avoid the Norwegian rules being in conflict with the World Trade Organization's GATS agreement. Since Norway is a party to that agreement, Norway cannot give the United Kingdom a superior position without granting similar rights to other WTO members, unless a free trade agreement between Norway and the United Kingdom is entered into.

For these reasons, there will be a period between 1 January 2021 and the possible conclusion of a free trade agreement when persons connected to the United Kingdom will not fulfil the legal requirements mentioned in the first paragraph. The enterprises where this is the case, must apply to the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Fisheries for an exemption. The Ministry has prepared a standardized application form, which may be sent by e-mail to the Ministry of Trade, Industries and Fisheries at postmottak@nfd.dep.no. The Ministry will seek to process all applications before 31 December 2020, to ensure that the enterprises are affected as little as possible by delays related to the conclusion of a free trade agreement between Norway and the United Kingdom.

 

***

  • Opdated 27 November 2020: Added link to press release from the Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs.
  • Updated 12 November 2020: Added information to board members, corporate assembly members and general managers.
  • Updated 29 October 2020: Added links to UDI.
  • Updated 29 June 2020: Questions and answers about British citizens’ rights.
  • Updated 1 February 2020: Updated to reflect the fact that the UK left the EU with a Withdrawal Agreement in place.
  • Updated 17 January 2020: Up-to-date information on dual citizenship added.
  • Updated 5 November 2019: Link to temporary regulation on the right of continued residence for British citizens and their family members.
  • Updated 18 March 2019: Information added on the use of British driving licences after Brexit.
  • Updated 7 March 2019: Information added on the documents needed to confirm right of residence.