Bulgarian and Romanian nationals
This section explains Bulgarian and Romanian nationals' right to live and work in the UK.
All EEA and Swiss nationals can enter and live in the UK without needing to apply for our permission, if they can support themselves and their families in the UK without becoming an unreasonable burden on public funds. But Bulgarian and Romanian nationals may need to apply for our permission before they can work here.
If you want to work as an employee in the UK, you will normally need our permission before you start work. You may need to obtain an accession worker card, or you can work under the Seasonal Agricultural Workers Scheme (SAWS) or the Sectors Based Scheme (see below).
You do not need our permission to work in a self-employed capacity. However, you can apply for a registration certificate to confirm your right to work as a self-employed person in the UK, if you want to do this.
When you have been working legally as an employee in the UK for 12 months without a break, you will have full rights of free movement and will no longer need our permission to take work. You can then get a registration certificate confirming your right to live and work in the UK, although you do not need to do so.
If you are a student in the UK, you can take employment for up to 20 hours a week during term time and full-time during vacation periods from your course, but you must first obtain a registration certificate confirming that you are a student.
To find out how to apply for a registration certificate, see the Applying page.
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- New application forms - 6 April 2013
The European Economic Area (EEA) consists of Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, the Republic of Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden and the UK. Although Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway are not members of the European Union (EU), their citizens have the same rights as EU citizens to enter, live in and work in the UK.
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Irish Republic, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom.