A person who does not qualify for a right of residence under the free movement directive (Directive 2004/38/EC) may qualify for another right of residence under EU law. These are known as 'derivative rights' because they come from (are 'derived' from) EU law, not from the directive. A person who qualifies for a derivative right of residence has a right to live and work in the UK for as long as they continue to qualify for this right. Time spent in the UK with a derivative right of residence does not count as residence for the purpose of acquiring permanent residence in the UK. If you have a derivative right of residence you cannot acquire permanent residence on this basis. You will only continue to have that right of residence for as long as you qualify for that right. Application for Derivative Residence Card is made to the Home Office using application form DRF1. The Home Office will process the application for derivative residence card within 6 months from the date of receipt of the application.

Types of derivative rights of residence

A person may qualify for a derivative right of residence in one of the following categories:

  • as the primary carer of a British citizen child or dependent adult, where requiring the primary carer to leave the UK would force that British citizen to leave the EEA;
  • as the primary carer of an EEA national child who is exercising free movement rights in the UK as a self-sufficient person, where requiring the primary carer to leave the UK would prevent the EEA national child exercising those the free movement rights;
  • as the child of an EEA national worker/former worker where that child is in education in the UK;
  • as the primary carer of a child of an EEA national worker/former worker where that child is in education in the UK, and where requiring the primary carer to leave the UK would prevent the child from continuing their education in the UK; or
  • as the dependent child aged under 18 of a primary carer in one of the categories set out above, where requiring that dependent child to leave the UK would force the primary carer to leave the UK with them.