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Covid 19 Virus update

The British in Germany e.V. National Steering Committee have consulted on Friday 13th March on the implications of the Covid 19 virus spread in Germany.  They agreed to put out the following statement.   Any questions or queries from members –  don’t hesitate to contact info(at)britishingermany.org

“In line with the recommendations being made by experts, the German Minister for Health and the Chancellor, British in Germany  e.V. is suspending all physical meetings including Stammtische and is asking its members not to participate in any further face to face BiG events until further notice.”

CANCELLED! BiG Leipzig group – Launch of the Leipzig Stammtisch

This event has been cancelled due to the Coronavirus outbreak.

The new Leipzig Stammtisch will take place

at The Moritzbastei, Kurt-Masur-Platz 1, 04109 Leipzig
on 16 March 2020 at 7pm

Well, it’s finally happened: the Withdrawal Agreement has been ratified; we are in the transition period; but don’t feel alone.  Leipzig now has its own official Stammtisch and you are all invited to come along. A relaxed, informal evening to meet others, chat, ask questions and find support, all nationalities are welcome.  There will be information about the Withdrawal Agreement and what it means for Brits in Germany now and after the transition period ends.  If you’d rather speak about anything else other than Brexit, then that would be welcome too!

You can register through the Facebook event page.

British Embassy Facebook Q&A Sessions

The British Embassy runs InfoAbends and Facebook Q&A Sessions for those with questions regarding Brexit.

The next scheduled Facebook Q&A Sessions  are as follows:

  • Facebook Q&A. 23 March 2020, 7– 8.30 pm
  • Facebook Q&A. 25 May 2020, 7 – 8.30 pm
  • Facebook Q&A. 30 June 2020, 7.30 – 9 am

You can add your questions via the Embassy Facebook page once the Q&A Event is open.

More information regarding Embassy Events and the results of previous Facebook Q&A session can be found on the UK Government Website.

 

British in Europe explains the Withdrawal Agreement

Our colleagues at British in Europe have been busy looking at the details of the Withdrawal Agreement and providing the detail for you in a readable format.

The first in a series of explanatory articles covering what is it, what does it do and who does it cover is available on their website.

The second covers Residence Rights and Procedures and is now available on their website.

The third covers Health, Pensions and Social Security and is now available on their website.

The fourth covers Working Rights, Professional Qualifications
and Future Family Reunification and is now available on their website.

The fifth covers What is Not Covered and is now available on their website.

And the final one in the series, the sixth, provides answers to Frequently Asked Questions and is now available on their website.

Please also consider a donation to British in Europe to help them in their valuable work.

BiG Braunschweig group – meets for first time Thursday 20th

British in Braunschweig group meets for the first time on Thursday 20th February 

By Wendy Anne Kopisch (Organiser)  ** NOTE CHANGE OF DAY – 1 week later, same place, same time. 

What will we be talking about on Thursday 20th ?

That Brexit will probably not solve but rather exacerbate the very injustices it was supposed to solve?

That all the things for which Britain was respected the world over – not so much its former colonialism but rather its enduring politeness, grace in the event of setbacks, and diplomatic dexterity – have become hard to detect under the tirade of abuse from Farage & co?

That we made life decisions based on the assumption that the rights we had at birth would not suddenly be taken away from us by a vote in which many of us were not allowed to participate?

While all these thoughts have been with us a great deal over the past few weeks, months and years, and they are just as justified now as they were on that morning three and a half years ago, the focus on Thursday evening will be on looking as positively as possible to the immediate future.

Now that Brexit has happened, what next for Brits in Germany? What are the most important steps to take now? What do the terms of the Withdrawal Agreement, currently in force until the end of the year, mean for us, and what happens after the end of 2020? We are fortunate and grateful that the German government has agreed generous and flexible conditions for Brits living here, and this will be the main topic on Thursday. Come and join us!

7 pm in the Rheinische Republik.

Looking forward to seeing you there!  Sign up here

Upcoming Stammtisch Events

Here are the next British in Germany Stammtisch events that we are aware of, plus a list of past events for those interested in being in touch with established Stammtisch groups around the country:

Next in 2020:

Braunschweig

Time: Thursday 20 February, 2020 19:00 – 22:00

Place: Rheinische Republik
Neue Str. 10-12, 38100 Braunschweig
(look for the table with a Union Jack on it)

Register: Please let us know that you are attending on Facebook

Once you’ve recovered from Brexit day, meet up with like-minded Brits in Braunschweig to think positively about the British-EU identity and everything it stands for (and, despite everything, will continue to stand for). There will also be an update on the political situation and what to do if your status is unclear. Looking forward to seeing you there!

Berlin

Time: Sat 15 February, 2020 13:00 – 16:00

Place: Hüftgold Restaurant-Cocktailbar Neue Bahnhofstr. 29, 10245 Berlin, Germany

Register: Please let us know that you are attending on Facebook

Past Events

Hanover

Time: Thursday 12 September, 19:00 – 22:00

Place: Meiers Lebenslust (Osterstraße 64, Hanover)

Details: Facebook event

Berlin

Time: Saturday 14 September, 13:00 – 17:00

Place: BrewDog Mitte (Ackerstraße 29, Berlin)

Details: Facebook event

Berlin

Time: Saturday 11 May, 13:30 – 17:00 (approx)
Place: Brewdog
Ackerstraße 29, 10115, Berlin

Time: Saturday 13 April, 13:30 – 17:00 (approx)
Place: Brewdog
Ackerstraße 29, 10115, Berlin

Time: 19:30-21:00 – Brexit discussion (speakers tbc)
21:00 until very late – Music and dancing

Place: Freudenzimmer
Mehringdamm 61, 10961 Berlin

Price:  €4 online, €5 on the door
all profits go to British in Germany, e.V.

Details: jonworth.eu/fuxit2/

Stammtisch March Time: Saturday 16 March, 13:00 – 17:00 (approx)
Place: Brewdog
Ackerstraße 29, 10115, Berlin

Bremen

Time: Tuesday 28 May, 19:30 – 23:00

Place: Loft Bremen, Bahnhofsplatz 5 – 7, 28195 Bremen

Details: Facebook event

Stuttgart

Time: Friday 29 March, 19:00 – 22:00 (approx)
Place: Grand Café Planie
Charlottenplatz 17, 70173 Stuttgart

Nuremberg

Time: Friday 29 March, 19:30 – 23:00 (approx)
Place: O’Shea’s Irish Pub & Biergarten
Am Wespennest 6, 90403, Nuremberg

Munich

Time: Friday 29 March, 18:30 – 23:00 (approx)
Place: Paulaner im Tal
Tal 12, 80331 Munich

Hamburg

Time: Friday 29 March ,19:00 – 23:00 (approx)
Place:Simian Ales
65A, Langelohe, 25337 Elmshorn
Resister at Eventbrite

Frankfurt

Time: Friday 29 March, 19:30 – 22:30 (approx)
Place: Fox and Hound,
Niedenau 2, 60325, Frankfurt

Hanover

Time: Friday 15 March ,17:30- 19:45 (approx)
Place: Meiers Lebenslust
Osterstraße 64, 30159 Hanover, Germany

Time: Friday 17 May, 19:00 – 23:00

Place: Ständige Vertretung (Friedrichswall 10, Hanover)

Köln

Time: Thursday  14 March ,17:30- 19:00 (approx)
Place:Tasty Pasty Company
Mauenheimer Str. 28, 50733 Köln

Münster

Time: Friday  8 March ,19:00- 21:00 (approx)
Place: Spook’s
Hammer Str. 66, 48153 Münster

Berlin

Time: Saturday 2 March, 13:00 – 17:00 (approx)
Place: Brewdog
Ackerstraße 29, 10115, Berlin

Bremen

Time: Saturday  2 March ,17:30- 20:30 (approx)
Place: Loft Bremen
Bahnhofsplatz 5 – 7, 28195 Bremen

Hanover

Time: Monday 28 February ,18:00 – 21:00 (approx)
Place: Duke Irish Pub, 
Raschplatz 6, 30161 Hanover

Frankfurt

Time: Monday 25 February ,19:00 – 21:00 (approx)
Place: Daheim im Lorsbacher Thal, 
Große Rittergasse 49, 60594 Frankfurt

Hamburg

Time: Thursday 21 February ,19:00 – 22:00 (approx)
Place: Alles Elbe
Hein-Hoyer-Straße 63, 20359 Sankt Pauli

Berlin

Time: Saturday 16 February ,13:00 – 17:00 (approx)
Place: Brewdog
Ackerstraße 29, 10115, Berlin

Berlin

Time: Saturday 2 February ,13:00 – 17:00 (approx)
Place: Brewdog, Ackerstraße 29, 10115, Berlin

Stuttgart

Time: Thursday  31 January ,19:00 – 22:00 (approx)
Place: Academie der schönen Künste, Charlottenstraße 5, 70182 Stuttgart

Bremen

Time: Thursday  31 January ,19:00 – 23:30 (approx)
Place:Loft Bremen, Bahnhofsplatz 5 – 7, 28195 Bremen

Frankfurt

Time: Wednesday 30 January ,19:00 – 21:00 (approx)
Place: Daheim im Lorsbacher Thal, 
Große Rittergasse 49, 60594 Frankfurt

Also see our Events Calendar.

All Welcome this Friday night – BiG Berlin Stammtisch Brexit Day

A table has been booked for an event to mark Brexit day.

The theme is a Table for Europe.  You are invited to bring a dish from an EU27 country so that we can celebrate our diversity and European-ness. We will always be European.  Then we may head over to the BB Gate for midnight to hear the Embassy Singers sing the European National Anthem.

Please pass this onto all friends/contacts/colleagues you have in Berlin.

All nationalities welcome, the more the merrier. 

Be great if you could let us know via the Facebook registration page if you are thinking of attending to give us a rough idea of numbers for the venue. If you can bring some food to share please bring a list of ingredients for any attendees that may have allergies.

Time: 20:15 – 00:15

Place: The Castle
Frankfurter Tor 7, 10243 Berlin, Germany

***AGAIN, PLEASE SIGN UP ON THE FB PAGE TO GIVE US AN IDEA OF NUMBERS AND HOW MUCH SPACE WE SHOULD RESERVE AT THE VENUE.

Details and sign up here: Facebook Event

 

What does election result mean for UK citizens in Germany?

The likely timetable

Firstly, given the large Tory majority, it is very likely that the October version of the Withdrawal Agreement (WA) will be passed by the UK parliament in January, or possibly even sooner. It then has to be ratified by the European Parliament, but it’s now pretty much a given that the UK will leave the EU on 31st January 2020 and that the WA will come into force then. The WA foresees a transition period that will run from 1st February 2020 until 31st December 2020. It also contains an article (Article 132) which would allow an extension of 1 or 2 years – if that is requested by July 2020.

Citizens’ rights and the WA

The citizens’ rights section of the WA remains almost entirely unchanged from the original version agreed by Theresa May a year ago, and it is this part of the Agreement that will cover the future legal rights of British people who are legally resident in an EU27 country on the last day of the transition period. (however long that turns out to be) The Agreement is EU wide and, although each EU27 country will institute its own procedures for things like residence cards etc, each individual EU country must respect the WA’s set out provisions.

Under the WA, most of our rights remain wholly unchanged until the end of the transition period, so at least until 31st December, 2020. This includes freedom of movement meaning it will still be possible for people to move freely from the UK to the EU, or within the EU during that period. We do however lose the right to stand and vote in local and European elections from Brexit day, i.e. as of 1st February 2020.

**What’s important to note is that once the Withdrawal Agreement is in force, we will be covered by it for our lifetimes whatever happens with future negotiations.  So please don’t think that the rights the WA provides for us are temporary – they are not; if you are legally resident in an EU country at the end of the transition period these rights will cover you for your lifetime.

Specific rights included in the WA

Crucially, the WA ensures not only the right to live and work in the country of residence at the end of the transition period, but also covers areas such as S1 healthcare rights, together with aggregation and uprating of pensions.   The WA agreement also says we will be able to leave our host country for up to 5 years without losing our right to return.

The WA does not cover everything, however.  If you want a quick overview on exactly what it does and doesn’t cover, have a look at this article that Kalba Meadows wrote recently for France Rights – it’s equally applicable to us in Germany.

Dual citizenship in Germany

For those of us in Germany who meet the conditions to apply for German citizenship during the transition period i.e. up to 31st December 2020, there is an additional benefit. The German government passed a law which entitles us, if we meet the conditions and apply for German citizenship during that time, to keep our UK citizenship as well.  This is normally only an option for EU citizens.

And finally, for the avoidance of any doubt or confusion here’s 3 important points:

  1. The media doesn’t always help by using interchangeable terms for things that are quite separate. For example there is often reference made to a ‘deal’ to refer to the trade deal that has to be struck during the transition period, and the terms ‘no deal’ and ‘crashing out’ to a situation where no trade deal can be agreed. Confusingly, these are the very same terms that the media have previously used to denote the UK leaving without a Withdrawal Agreement, but the meaning is very different. Once the Withdrawal Agreement becomes law – expected on 31 January 2020 – then our future rights contained within it are guaranteed whatever happens with the future trade deal. So a failure to conclude a trade deal might be a ‘no deal’ situation for the UK, but not for British citizens living in the EU. This is important to be clear about and at the moment is the subject of much confusion and concern.
  2. Johnson is bringing to Parliament the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill, and intends to use his majority to pass that Bill at second reading before the Christmas recess. In this Bill, he intends to insert a clause barring any extension to the Withdrawal Agreement’s transition period beyond 31st December 2020. BUT this Bill is NOT the same thing as the Withdrawal Agreement itself which has already been approved by the European Council and cannot now be amended without further negotiation (which is very unlikely to happen). The WA contains an article (Article 132) allowing an extension of 1 or 2 years to the transition period if it’s requested by July 2020. Clause 132 will remain in the WA even if Johnson’s bill passes with his proposed amendment barring an extension, which means that the UK government could agree to extend the transition period at any point up to July 2020 by passing a new bit of legislation.
  3. Once the WA becomes law, the ‘no deal’ legislation already passed in each of the EU27 countries becomes defunct, and we then have to wait for each country to publish details of how it intends to implement the WA for its British residents.

Further information sources:

  • If you are a member of the British in Europe Facebook Group, Kalba Meadows also posted information there on 14th December. She and Zoe Adams Green have also answered a number of questions there and you may find helpful. https://www.facebook.com/groups/britishineurope/

Become a member of British in Germany e.V. here for only 15 Euros a year to support BiG’s advocacy and campaigning work and  to get the latest up to date information on how Brexit will impact the lives of UK citizens living in Germany