Veterans in Europe

Assisting British Veterans and their families to make the adjustments they need now Britain has left the European Union.

Veterans in Europe

Assisting British Veterans and their families to make the adjustments they need now Britain has left the European Union.

Introduction

Frequently Asked Questions

French Residency Application

German Residency Application

Contact Us

 


 

Introduction

Please note: If you are a non-veteran and live in the Bremen, Hamburg, Niedersachsen, or Nordrhein-Westfalen regions of Germany, we may also be able to provide some practical support.

Now the UK has left the European Union, UK nationals already living in EU member states need to take action to register as residents, so that they can continue to live and work in their chosen country.

SSAFA, along with several other partners, is working alongside the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) to deliver the National Support Fund to assist veteran UK nationals who reside in countries across Europe. Further details of the Fund can be found in the FCDO press release of 6 March 2020.

The charity is providing support via a team of trained caseworkers, who are based in France and Germany, to those veterans who are deemed most at-risk, such as living in care homes, in rural areas, or those without access to computers or the internet. In addition, SSAFA is supporting those with mental health problems, such as Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), to ensure they receive the practical support they need.

Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, our trained volunteer caseworkers provide practical support to individuals in the Armed Forces community in order to secure their right to remain as a resident in France or Germany.

Contact us today and we’ll put you in touch with a specially trained volunteer caseworker near you. Your assigned caseworker will assist you in understanding the process and will go on to support you as you complete and submit the necessary paperwork.

Support provided by SSAFA, the Armed Forces charity is in addition to that provided by the British Embassies and High Commissions in France and Germany.  

Support for veterans and their families living in European countries other than France or Germany is being provided by separate organisations to SSAFA.  To confirm which organisation may be able to assist you please search for the relevant country of residence here.

 


 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q:  I am a veteran / ex-serving military personnel living in France or Germany - how can I obtain support with my residency application?

A: You can contact us on a freephone number or send a message using this contact form. Our Project Coordinator will take brief details of your enquiry and your circumstances. You will then be assigned a volunteer as close to you geographically as possible to support you with your enquiry.

Q: I served in the military and am now retired and living in the UK.  However I have a second home in France or Germany. I am planning to move over there in the next couple of years. Do I still need to go through a residency application?

A: The answer is yes, you do. However this process may differ depending on your individual circumstances. Please call us or send us a message using this contact form.

Q: When do I need to start my residency application to remain in France or Germany and how long will it take?

A: If you live in France or Germany then you can start the process straight away.

The time taken to complete each country's application process will differ depending on individual circumstances. For further information please call us or send us a message using this contact form.

Please note that the specialist support offered by SSAFA can be accessed until March 2021 for anyone looking for guidance with this transition. The official deadline for applications for residency follows slightly later in July.

Q: I live in Europe, but not in France or Germany - who should I contact?

A: SSAFA can only provide help in these countries as this is where our network of volunteers operate.  However, other agencies may be able to assist you, depending on where you live.  It is recommended that you visit this GOV.UK page, select the country you live in and review the "Visas and Residency" section.

Q: What documents will I need to produce to apply for residency?

A: It is recommended that you start to gather the various documents  you may need as soon as possible in order to ensure you have them to hand when you applying for residency.

These include (but may not be limited to) passports, birth certificates, utility bills, tax documents and health care cover documents. If you need any further advice on this or you are missing any documents then please call us or send us a message using this contact form.

Q: I am worried that I have not been fully compliant with local laws (perhaps concerning tax or housing) - what should I do?

A: The sooner you begin the process of becoming compliant the better.  You will be able to understand exactly where you stand regarding the local laws of your country of residence, and this will allow you to address any outstanding issues.  Again, please call us or send a message using this contact form and we will be able to discuss any issues of concern.

Q: How long will this process take?

A: Unfortunately, we cannot provide exact time scales. However, we recommend applying as soon as possible as the process will be unique to each individual's circumstances.

Q: What happens if I do not go through with this process?

A: Failure to establish your residency rights in Europe could lead to deportation.  It is in your interest to begin this process as soon as possible, in order to protect your future residency rights.

Q: I am not a veteran but I live in the Bremen, Hamburg, Niedersachsen, or Nordrhein-Westfalen regions of Germany. How can I obtain support with my residency application?

A: You can contact us on a freephone number or send a message using this contact form. Our Project Coordinator will take brief details of your enquiry and your circumstances and be able to provide some practical support on the processes in the region applicable to you.

 

 


 

French Residency Application

The website for UK nationals in France to apply for residency is now open.  If you need any help with this process then please get in contact.

 

 


 

German Residency Application

For further information on how UK Nationals can obtain residency in Germany under the Withdrawal Agreement, please watch this video from the British Embassy in Berlin.

 

For further information please read the following:

FAQ from the German Interior Ministry

Living in Germany Guide

Guidance on Residence

Application Notes for the Implementation of the UK-EU Withdrawal Agreement

 


 

How to contact us:

To start the process please use this contact form.

Alternatively you can call us on one of the following freephone numbers:

If you are in Germany, please call: 08000009913

If you are in France, please call: 0805119617 

If you are in the UK, please call: 08001930474

 


 

SSAFA's service provisions for resettling UK Nationals are only available to people who have received at least one day's pay from the Armed Forces (British Army, Royal Navy, Royal Air Force, Royal Marines, including Reserves) and wish to reside in France or Germany. 

For those outside the Armed Forces community, SSAFA will be working alongside the International Organization for Migration (IOM), Church of England (COE) and, the Franco-British Network to provide support to UK nationals across France. In addition, the charity will be working alongside IOM in Germany.

Please note, SSAFA is not registered with the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC) and is unable to provide immigration advice.