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Habitual Residence Test - Who is exempt from the Habitual Residence Test?

All claimants have to pass or be exempt from the Habitual Residence Test in order to claim certain benefits and Tax Credits.

Who is exempt from the Habitual Residence Test?

The following are exempt from the Habitual Residence test for means-tested benefits:

  • EEA nationals resident in the UK before 31 December 2020, who have ‘worker’ or ‘self employed’ status – and their family members
  • EEA nationals who have permanent right to reside as a worker or self employed person who have retired or become permanently incapable of work – and their family members
  • Refugees and people granted discretionary leave to enter or remain under humanitarian protection;
  • People granted the Destitution Domestic Violence Concessionary Leave.
  • People not subject to immigration control and have been deported, expelled or removed from another country to the UK

For Attendance Allowance, Carers Allowance, Disability Living Allowance and Personal Independence Payment, the above exemptions do not apply. 

However, you are accepted as habitually resident and present in the UK if:

  • You are abroad because you are serving in the armed forces or
  • You are living with someone who is abroad because they are serving in the armed forces, and you are their close relative.  A close relative would be a spouse, civil partner, son, stepson, daughter, stepdaughter, father, stepfather, father-in-law, mother, stepmother or mother-in-law.

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