EU Settlement Scheme


On this page, you'll find an update on the EU Settlement Scheme and how this affects basketball from 1st January 2021.  

This information is interpreted from the Government website on and it is important to remember that the EU Settlement Scheme and it's related circumstances are ever changing.  

Unfortunately, Basketball England is unable to give immigration advice, therefore all members will need to ensure they take up their own advice from the relevant Government departments. 

This is general information and designed to give a brief update only.  Changes to the 2021-22 season based on the scheme will be determined by Basketball England. 

Click on one of the items below to find out more., or use the button at the bottom of this page to contact the NBL department directly.

What is the EU Settlement Scheme? +

The EU Settlement Scheme allows an individual to apply for either settled or pre-settled status:  Which status an individual gets depends on how long they have been living in the UK when making an application.  Irish citizens are not required to apply under the scheme in order to remain in the UK. 

What does "Settled" and "Pre-Settled" status mean? +

Settled status 

If an individual has lived in the UK for a continuous 5-year period they can apply for indefinite leave to remain, referred to as settled status. This status enables an individual to continue living in the UK permanently.  

An individual can still apply if they have had absences from the UK during the 5-year period of up to 6 months in any 12-month period, or one period of up to 12 months in certain circumstances including serious illness or study.  

Pre-settled status 

An individual can apply for limited leave to remain on the basis of currently residing in the UK. This is referred to as pre-settled status. Once an individual has pre-settled status, they can apply for settled status once you have met the 5-year continuous residence period. 

Key general points +
  • EEA and Swiss nationals who have arrived to live in the UK prior to 31 December 2020 will have up until 30 June 2021 to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme. This is necessary if you wish to continue living in the UK after 30 June 2021.  ​​ 

  • Under current plans, those who arrive in the UK after 31 December 2020 will be subject to the immigration system in place at that time this includes EEA and Swiss Nationals who will require a visa to play basketball. 

  • Both settled and pre-settled status allow an individual to travel in and out of the UK. 

  • If an individual has 'historic' indefinite leave to enter or remain in the UK they are not required to apply.​ 

  • ​Once an individual holds settled status, they will be able to spend up to 5 continuous years outside of the UK without losing the status. Under separate arrangements, Swiss citizens can spend up to 4 continuous years outside the UK without losing the status.  

  • An individual can spend up to 2 years outside the UK without losing pre-settled status, but they will need to maintain continuous 5-year residence to qualify for settled status. ​ 
  • ​With a status under the EU Settlement Scheme an individual will be able to study and work in the UK and are eligible to use the National Health Services.  

  • ​An EU/EEA/Swiss national with settled status will be able to apply for British citizenship after holding this status for at least a year (or immediately if married to a British citizen). Any children born in the UK will automatically become British citizens.  
What does this mean for basketball as an NBL Player? +

In line with regulations the following rules and regulations have been updated and applied: 

All Coaches including assistant coaches must hold at least the Basketball England Level 2 Coach Award, In Division One Men the Coach must hold a Basketball England Level 3 Coach Award prior to the issue of a National Competitions Licence save that this Regulation 17.4 shall not apply to a Non-EEA and EEA/EU (From 1st January 2021 unless the individual has a EU Settlement Scheme permit)  Coach who has not previously been registered in England provided however that in subsequent seasons (i.e. after the Non-EEA Coach's first Season or EEA/EU/Swiss National coach’s first season)) this Regulation 17.4 will be deemed to apply. 

Once an application has been submitted, Basketball England may require additional documentation to be provided in order for such application to be approved, including but not limited to:   

  1. a completed transfer form: if a player is registered with a Club and wishes to register with another Club;  
  2. a completed International Clearance Request Form; if a player has been registered with a National Federation outside of England, it is the responsibility of the Cub to send this information to Basketball England;   
  3. a Self-Declaration Form; if a non-British Player is registering with Basketball England for the first time and has never registered with another Basketball Federation outside of England. Anyone found to be providing false or misleading information to Basketball England with regards to their licence application, shall be immediately suspended for the remainder if the season and the club shall be fined a fixed penalty per £250 per incident. 
  4. A Confirmation of Amateur Status form; if a Non-EEA  player competes in Division Two Men or lower or Division One Women or lower they must confirm that they have never played in a professional league or are attempting to play in a professional league in the future.   EEA/EU/Swiss nationals after the 1st Jan 2021, will be required to complete an Amateur status form, in order to compete in the above leagues.  This is not required IF the player has a settlement scheme permit. 
  5. such other documents as may be requested or required by Basketball England (such as, by way of example only, a valid Disclosure and Barring Service check); and 
  6. in the case of a senior or U20 Non-EEA Player / Coach, valid UK entry documentation (Work Permit/Certificate of Sponsorship and or Visa), photocopy of a valid passport and a signed valid contract where applicable (in accordance with Regulation 17.7.13 below). 
  7. All participants from an EEA European Economic Area (EEA), EU or Switzerland must provide their EU Settlement scheme permit to apply for National Competitions Licence.  This permit must show an expiry date and will come into force from 1st January 2021.  Any EU nationals that wish to come to the UK on or after the 1st January 2021 and to gain a National Competition Licence must have the relevant Work Permit to do so and will then follow the same eligibility checks as a NON-EEA Player. 

No licence will be issued for a Non-EEA Player and EEA/EU Player (from the 1st January 2021 unless the player has a EU Settlement Scheme permit) that is being paid to play or coach unless a current Work Permit and/or Governing Body Endorsement and/or Certificate of Sponsorship has been issued by Basketball England and the UK Border Agency and is accompanied by a signed valid employment contract. EEA/EU/Swiss Nationals on or after the 1st Jan 2021 will also be subjected to the same restrictions, unless the person has a valid settlement scheme permit. Only teams in BBL, WBBL and Division One Men may apply to Basketball England for a Governing Body Endorsement using one of the appropriate forms set out at Appendix 6. Save for a player or coach who has the (appropriate) right to work as a professional sportsperson in the UK on their current entry clearance into the UK.   

For a licence to be issued for Non-EEA Players or Coaches and EEA/EU Players or coaches (from the 1st January 2021 unless the player has a EU Settlement Scheme permit to play or coach in Amateur Leagues, documentation must be provided to Basketball England which demonstrates that such Player and/or Coach holds appropriate entry clearance into the UK. A licence will not be issued for a Player and/or Coach who does not have leave to remain in the UK. A declaration of Amateur status is also required for Non-EEA and EEA/EU (from 1st January 2021 unless the individual has a EU Settlement scheme permit) Players or Coaches, background checks will be carried out by Basketball England to determine whether or not the player meets amateur status requirements to be licensed for Basketball England Competitions in line with Home Office rules of Amateurs playing in Amateur Leagues.  At any point during the season, Basketball England reserves the right to remove a Player / Coach’s licence if they are found to be in breach of this rule.  The Amateur Status Declaration form is set out at Appendix 8, please note this is not required for EEA/EU/Swiss Nationals who hold a valid EU Settlement Permit. 

Subject to the remaining provisions of Regulation 18, a Team shall only be able to field a maximum of one Non-EEA Player in any Match.  

For the avoidance of doubt, there shall be no limit on the number of British players and/or EEA/EU/Swiss National players that have EU Settlement Permit for the UK or Work Permitted EEA/EU/Swiss Nationals for 2020-21 season. 

In Division One Men for any Match in the League competition and/or where two Division One Men’s teams play each other in a Cup Match, a Club can register on the Scoresheet a maximum of 2 Non-EEA Players. In addition, Division One Men’s teams are permitted to play two Non-EEA Players from the Quarter Final round of the National Cup competition. 

All Non-EEA and EEA/EU/Swiss nationals (From 1st January 2020)  players / coaches must have a valid contract of employment as a basketball player / coach with their club in order to be classified in the appropriate category. Clubs are reminded that they are responsible for the operation of PAYE & NI requirements for all employees and Basketball England may require documentary evidence to verify that where such a contract of employment exists, the due statutory procedures are being followed. 

During the course of the Season: 

Clubs in Division One and Two Men may licence a maximum of 4 Non-EEA Players; and there is no limit on the number of EEA/EU/Swiss Nationals requiring work permits through their club (GBE) or that hold a EU Settlement Scheme Permit for the 2020-21 season. 

Clubs in the Division Three Men, Division One and Two Women may licence a maximum of 3 Non-EEA Players and there is no limit on the number of EEA/EU/Swiss Nationals that do or don’t  hold a EU Settlement Scheme Permit for the 2020-21 season. 

A Club is permitted to license a maximum of one Non-EEA, EEA/EU/Swiss National Coach per Team. Any Team that has a Non-EEA, EEA/EU/Swiss National   Coach must also have a National assistant coach. 



We currently limited the amount of NON-EEA that can play in the leagues and also be registered, would we treat EEA/Swiss nationals the same as a NON-EEA player and will they be restricted? +

This is something that will change from 2021-22 season onwards across all senior leagues.  We currently don’t have restrictions in place for those that play in Junior NBL leagues only.   

Will there be any major changes for the 2020-21 season for EU/EEA & Swiss Nationals? +


From the 1st January 2021, all new players who wish to participate in the leagues, will need a relevant VISA to be in the country or have pre settlement or settlement to remain in the UK. 

For Division One Men they must be on the current Governing Body Endorsements and meet this criteria, but the Home Office have stated they will be in touch with BE some point in order to make changes to the GBE requirements to ensure everything is functioning in time for 1st January.   

We will not be restricting or changing the regulations mid-season, but individuals would need to meet the new eligibility criteria. 

It is integral anyone that can apply for the EU Settlement do so, prior to the 31st December 2020.

Are EEA/Swiss nationals to be treated the same as a NON-EEA individual, Do they have the same rights as previously or not? +

Yes, there will no longer be free movement so EEA and Non-EEA will be treated the same.

Additional sources of information 

Clubs/members are advised to read the information on the EU Settlement Scheme on the website.