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Howard, Immigration Lawyer
Category: UK Immigration Law
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Experience:  Senior Partner with nearly 20 years experience in UK Immigration Law.
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Hello Charlotte, I am a dentist qualified from a non-EEA country,and

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Hello Charlotte,
I am a dentist qualified from a non-EEA country,and married to a british citizen,i would like to know whether i come under exempt category to register with the GDC, Do i qualify under this clause (a person who is not a national of an EEA state or Switzerland but who is, by virtue of an enforceable Community right, entitled to be treated, for the purposes of access to and pursuit of the profession, no less favourably than a national of a relevant European state)
The expert you have requested does not appear to have posted here for nearly 2 years but I will be happy to assist.

You are not exempt. The reason for this is that the text you are quoting relates to EEA Citizens (and their partners) exercising Community rights, such as the right to free movement within the EEA. A British Citizen is not living and working in the UK on the basis of an EEA Community right but is instead here simply by right of birth. If your partner was French, for example, and working in the UK then you might be exempt.

This is the same type of quirk that results in the Spouse visa for the partner of a British Citizen having a financial requirement that does not exist under the EEA Family visa route for a Spouse of an EEA Citizen coming to the UK.

I hope the above is clear.

The following web page might prove useful, although I would imagine you might already have accessed it:

Please remember to rate the service that I have provided. If further clarification is required then please feel free to ask.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Hello again,does it make any difference if my partner achieved citizenship through HSMP,and if he has worked in the EEA country aswell?

I would suggest not. The British partner working outside the UK would enable the non-EEA partner to bypass the Spouse Visa requirements and get an EEA Family visa under the Surinder Singh route but this only works because the partner's EEA Family visa obtained outside the UK enables entry to the UK. Even in this scenario the British Citizen is NOT exercising a Community right by coming to the UK to work and the partner would thus not be exempt.

If you look at this squarely then you must agree that your partner is not exercising any Community rights by living and working in the UK and the answer to your question should then be clear.

Even being exempt does not always mean that you avoid certain requirements.

There was a similar case discussed here recently where the GDC had accidentally given exemption and then later said they had made a mistake.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thankyou for the prompt reply, almost a year ago we had enquired about the same to GDC, and gdc had asked us if my partner had worked in the EEA country for more than 3 months, at that time my partner had not worked in the EEA country so we had then left this exempt route.

Just to fill in a bit of a background, i have already got a settlement visa for 2years to join my partner in the united kingdom,which would be extented for 1 year and then am eligible for british citizenship.

My partner had achieved full registration through ORE examination and is currently working as a general dental practitioner here in uk.

so do you think my registration would be through ore and not through any exempt category?

Correct, assuming you have a Spouse Visa and not an EEA Family Visa.


The GDC could of course decide at any time to apply a different criteria or come to a different conclusion - it is not really a matter of immigration law but rather regulatory requirements. The fact remains, however, that a British Citizen living and working in the UK is NOT exercising Community Rights, regardless of whether they have worked elsewhere in the EEA for any particular period of time.


IF your partner had been living and working outside the UK but in the EEA and you had obtained a EEA Family Visa and then come to the UK (Surinder SIngh route) then the GDC MIGHT have considered you to be exempt as your visa would have been granted based on Community Rights being exercised. I believe that you are NOT here on that basis though and thus exemption should not apply.


You might like to also note the following paragraph, with the source linked after:


"Therefore, in the event you can demonstrate exempt person status, this does not lead to automatic registration and does not “exempt” you from the ORE. It gives you the option of applying under the route of an individual assessment in addition to applying for the ORE."


You stated that your settlement visa was granted for 2 years and will be extended for 1 year - I presume you meant that you will get ILR after 2 years and then get Citizenship a year after getting ILR.


In summary, the precise answer would be that the GDC might consider you exempt IF you and your partner had been living and working outside the UK but within the EEA for at least 3 months but they might come back later and cause problems by saying this was done in error as you are not in the UK as a consequence of Community Rights being exercised. Does that make sense?

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