A Zambrano carer is a parent or carer from a non-EEA state whose residence is required in order to enable a child or dependant adult to live in the European Union.
Most Zambrano carers are protected by EU case law or the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement (if they reside in the UK).
Migrant parents of British children based in the UK, however, are excluded from the Brexit Withdrawal Agreement, because they have not exercised their free movement rights.
5 May 1949
Under Churchill's leadership, the UK becomes a founding member of the Council of Europe. It is responsible for the European Convention on Human Rights and the European Court of Human Rights.
1 January 1958
The Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union (TFEU) comes into force. The Articles outline rights available to all citizens of the EU.
The UK joins the EEC or European Economic Community and agrees to uphold the rights outlined in the TFEU.
The UK agrees to follow the United Nations International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR) which calls for residents to be able to achieve full participation in society.
The European Union is formed. The UK joins in November 1993.
1 January 1994
The EEA or European Economic Area is formed. The UK becomes a member.
25 November 2003
The EU establishes long residence for third party nationals after five years (2003/109/EC). The UK, Ireland and Denmark opt out of this Directive.
25 March 2004
The EU establishes the rights of families to free movement across the EU (2004/38/EC). Financially independent parents (Zambrano carers) are not eligible.
8 March 2011
A financially independent Colombian national, Ruiz Zambrano, wins the right to reside in the EU as the carer of his European children. The concept of Zambrano carers is established.
23 June 2016
51.89 per cent of British voters decide in favour of leaving the EU.
21 June 2018
The Home Office publishes Annex B: draft Immigration Rules for the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS). Settlement will be awarded to EU citizens and family member of British citizens (with an exclusion for financially independent parents) "on a basis which reflects their current EU law rights".
7 March 2019
The Home Office publishes the Explanatory Memorandum to the Statement of Changes in Immigration Rules Presented to Parliament (HC 1919). The EUSS will accept those lawfully resident in the UK by virtue of a ‘derivative right’ to reside, based on wider EU law. This list includes Zambrano carers.
Late May 2019
EUSS officially opens to Zambrano carers. Unlike the digital application for EU citizens, Zambrano carers must request and complete a paper based application. Applications are expected to be decided within six months. By contrast, EU citizens who apply via the digital app receive a decision within 72 hours.
The Home Office sends letters to Zambrano carers encouraging them to apply for leave to remain under another part of the Immigration Rules.
31 January 2020
The UK leaves the European Union. The transition period begins. Rights to reside acquired under the EEA Regulations are temporarily extended during the transition period.
A year after receiving the paper applications, the Home Office begins to refuse many Zambrano carers. The reason given is due to concurrently holding leave to remain under another part of the Immigration Rules.
31 December 2020
The transition period between the UK and EU ends. The automatic right of migrant parents of British children to reside in the UK ends.
The Home Office refuse applications for many Zambrano carers. The stated reason is due to their leave to remain under the UK rules as of 31 Dec 2020.
09 June 2021
Upper Tribunal Judge, Mostyn J concludes the Home Office erred in its definition of a Zambrano carer. He explains leave to remain under the UK rules does not invalidate one's status as a Zambrano carer.
30 June 2021
The deadline for applying to the settlement scheme expires. Anyone without either a pending or resolved application could face deportation. Late applications are accepted with 'good reason'.
30 December 2021
Underhill LJ of the Court of Appeal agrees with Mostyn J that Zambrano carers can hold leave to remain under the another part of the Immigration Rules and still be considered Zambrano carers. The Home Office agree to update their policy to reflect the Court's finding.
The Court of Appeal says parents who had leave under another part of the Immigration Rules can not become a Zambrano carer at a later date.
30 June 2022
The Home Office renews their decision to exclude from the EU Settlement Scheme Zambrano carers who hold leave to remain under another part of the Immigration Rules.
The Home Office refuse Zambrano carers who hold leave to remain under another part of the Immigration Rules.
Zambrano carers who hold leave to remain under another part of the Immigration Rules lodge appeals with the First Tier Tribunal. The Home Office do not update their documentation to reflect the Court of Appeal's ruling.