Continuing our series of articles focusing on Brexit and the impact to the Channel Islands, courtesy of Carey Olsen.
Today, we focus on the the end of the ‘Protocol 3’ arrangement
During both the UK’s period as a Member State of the EU, and during the Transition Period, the relationship between the Islands on the one hand, and the EU on the other, continued in accordance with Protocol 3 to the UK’s treaty of Accession to the European Union (‘Protocol 3’).
Protocol 3 brought the Islands within the EU Single Market for the purposes of trade in goods (but not services). The Islands did not otherwise benefit from the UK’s membership of the EU. Protocol 3 ceased to apply following the end of the Transition Period, to be replaced (in some areas) by the terms of the TCA (which is dealt with in the section below).
Under Protocol 3, the authorities in the Islands were required to treat natural and legal persons of the EU equally and in a non-discriminatory fashion. While the UK was a Member State of the EU, this meant that EU citizens had unrestricted visitor access to the Islands, as part of the CTA. However, the Islands were entitled to, and did, establish their own separate policies in relation to the right to live and work which were different to the polices that applied in the UK and the EU.
Protocol 3 provided that the pre-existing rights of Channel Islanders in the UK were not affected when the UK entered the EU. However, Channel Islanders (who are British citizens), did not benefit from EU provisions relating to the free movement of persons or services. This exclusion from EU provisions relating to free movement applied to Channel Islanders unless they were directly connected with the UK (by birth, descent from a parent or grandparent born, where adopted or naturalised in the UK, or where they had at any time been ordinarily resident within the United Kingdom for five or more years). Some Channel Islanders therefore did not have freedom of movement within the EU.
As for UK citizens, the end of the Transition Period brought the free movement rights within the EU of Channel Islanders who were connected to the UK to an end. Please see above for the free movement rights within the CTA.
The Islands have committed to securing the rights of EU, European Economic Area (EEA), and Swiss citizens and their family members resident in the Islands following the end of the Transition Period. There was no change to the status of EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens and their family members living in the Islands before the end of the Transition Period, nor will there be any changes throughout the implementation period, which has been extended to run until 30th June 2021. Any EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens who wish to remain in the Islands beyond that date will need to apply under the appropriate Settlement Scheme. If approved, those citizens and their family members will be allowed to continue to live and work in Guernsey or Jersey as applicable, and their rights to healthcare, work arrangements and public services will continue unaffected. The deadline for applying to the EU/EEA/Swiss Settlement Scheme is 30th June 2021 in the Islands as well as the UK; and applicants needed to register with the scheme before the end of December 2020.
Join us tomorrow for the next part in this Brexit series, focusing on a new mode of working with the new Trade and Cooperation Agreement.
Our thanks to the Carey Olsen teams in Guernsey and Jersey for sharing their expertise and advice.
- Guernsey: Christopher Anderson (Partner), Elaine Gray (Partner), Matthew Brehaut (Senior Associate), Julia Schaefer (Senior Associate)
- Jersey authors: Robert Milner (Partner), David Patterson (Senior Associate)