Expat Life in London | EEA FM Residence Card Application

UK Residence card is the first thing one must do when moving to the UK as an expat. While the UK Home Office website offers a detailed information about the documents they require, there’s no clear step-by-step procedure as to how it’s done. I’ve searched every single UK immigration forums to see what needs to be done next which wasn’t very easy to do. So I thought I’d write about my own experience on this blog just in case someone out there is in a similar situation.

My profile:
  • I hold a Philippine passport.
  • My husband is Greek so I fall under the EEA FM (European Economic Area Family Member).
  • We were married for 2 years when I applied for EEA FM residence card.
  • We were living together for 2 years in Doha.
  • We transferred to London as my husband got a job offer so he was already employed as soon as we arrived in London.
  • We arrived in London on 16th August 2016 and I was holding a normal UK Tourist visa which was valid until 27th October 2016.
What we’re applying for:

My husband and I just moved to London and while he doesn’t necessarily need any documents for him to live and work here, I do. However, for me to be able to process my own residence card, my husband needs to have his own registration certificate. So we’re applying for both at the same time. Registration certificate for my husband and residence card for myself.

Documents submitted:
  • Both our passports (original).
  • Passport size photographs (husband and myself).
  • Marriage certificate (original).
  • My husband’s bank statement for one month.
  • Proof of my husband’s employment which was showed on section 12B of the application form. My husband’s employer filled it out for us with the company stamp.
  • My husband’s payslip.
  • Council tax receipt which shows both of our names.
  • Application form. I only completed the forms which applies to me and my husband. I did 2 sets of application forms, one for my husband which is practically just the first section of the application form and one for myself which includes all of the forms which applies to me.
  • Postal order for GBP130 (GBP65 per person). You can get a postal order in any post office. For the amount of GBP130, there’s a fee of GBP12.50. Make the postal order payable to ‘Home Office’ and cross A/C Payee only, the post office staff knows what to do when you mention these requirements to them. I wrote the full name and date of birth of my husband (as he’s the principal applicant) on the back of the postal order and attached it to the front of the application form.

I then submitted all of those documents through special delivery so I can track it on Royal Mail website. The amount that I paid for this post was GBP7.25.

Home Office – EEA applications
PO Box 590
DH99 1AD

Application Timeline:

06OCT16 Documents sent to Home Office.
07OCT16 Documents received by Home Office.
20OCT16 My husband (principal applicant) received an email from the Home Office with our application case ID.
24OCT16 Received biometric invitation for myself, the letter was dated 19OCT16.
25OCT16 Enrolled my biometrics at New Malden post office. You can find the nearest post office from you on this Branch Finder website. Enter your postcode and click on Refine branch services and then choose Home Office Biometric Enrolment from the drop down menu. I paid GBP19.20 for my biometrics enrolment.
29OCT16 Received Certificate of Application, letter was dated 27OCT16. At this point, I am now allowed to work in the UK.
15APR17 Received a letter from DX saying that there’s an urgent delivery for me which they tried to deliver but there was nobody home (lie! my husband was home the whole day). I rescheduled the delivery for 19APR as it’s the first date available for delivery being the Easter Sunday weekend.
19APR17 Received my residence card, FINALLY!
04MAY17 Received our documents and our passports.

It was a long waiting process and to be completely honest, I was getting fed up by the fact that I don’t have our passports the entire time. What if there’s an emergency and we had to travel ASAP? After receiving the residence card, I did follow up with the UK Home Office when we’ll receive our documents and we were informed that it will be delivered 10 working days after I received my residence card. They weren’t lying.

The total amount that we paid for this application was GBP168.95. We didn’t have to go through agencies and I do highly advise anyone to avoid paying extra cost as it is a straightforward process even if it’s a bit long.

Disclaimer: This is only a documentation of my own personal experience applying for EEA FM residence card. This should not be your sole guide when applying for your residence card. The process keeps on changing and it’s always best to double check with the Home Office directly should you have any questions about your application.


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  • Phoebe Rivera October 24, 2017 at 14:58

    Hi i am also a pinay married to a Portuguese citizen living in the uk. I will be entering the Uk on december under an EEA family permit which i applied in Thailand (where i am working)

    since it is a long process, do you highly suggest that i apply for the residence card as soon as possible once i arrive in the Uk?

    Hoping for you response.
    Thank you very much,
    PHOEBE 🙂

    • Pinay Flying High November 7, 2017 at 08:42

      Yes I do, specially if you’re planning to work here. 🙂

      • Noav October 27, 2018 at 13:37

        Hi dear,

        Its almost a year to your post, but it would be really helpful if you could answer my query.

        Did you have a ‘Article 10 residence card’ from Greece while entering UK? or you applied for a tourist visa from Doha?

        Thank you

        • Pinay Flying High October 30, 2018 at 10:13

          Hi there, I had a UK tourist visa applied from Doha.

          • Anonymous October 30, 2018 at 10:27

            Hi, thank you for the reply.
            Does the letter/certificate of application had it mentioned that you are allowed to work while waiting for the residence card?

  • Trainswestcantwoespano May 5, 2017 at 10:45

    Good and bad, bureaucracy gone mad they say. But given these times when so much is going on around the world not surprising.
    When I was in Dubai recently, yes, a delay at the airport, involved me being searched for explosives and all hand baggage thoroughly searched
    by a team of five (women). Then the aircraft was delayed take off for 45 minutes when all were on board and the craft was taxing away from the terminal.

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    Welcome to my blog! My name is Noemi, a Filipina who caught the travel bug at an early age and has never been cured. I blog about travel, food and my extraordinary mundane life in London with the Greek Mister.

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