Service personnel and families based in or considering a posting to Cyprus may be interested to learn about changes impacting the retention of Service Families Accommodation (SFA) for educational purposes.
Following the UK’s departure from the European Union, UK Nationals do not have the right to free movement within the European Union including Republic of Cyprus. The status of a Service person assigned to British Forces Cyprus (BFC) is governed by the Treaty of Establishment and allows personnel permanently assigned to BFC exemption from the immigration controls that are applicable to a UK national. The status afforded to personnel and their dependents is rescinded when the Service person is permanently reassigned from BFC therefore Service policy (Joint Service Publications (JSP) 342, 464 and 752) that previously allowed families to retain SFA after the Service person has been re-assigned or deployed from BFC is no longer applicable.
Previously under certain circumstances, in accordance with JSP 464, a Service person could request to retain SFA for example if an accompanying child was in a critical stage of education. The freedom to offer these extensions in the future is severely restricted and, in most cases, will be highly unlikely. Families currently based in BFC or considering an assignment to BFC are advised that there is no guarantee that requests for SFA retention and extension of Status based on dependents being part way through critical stage of education will be granted. Personnel could consider utilising the Continuity of Educational Allowance if there is a likelihood that a dependant’s education may be disrupted due to an assignment part way through the critical stage of education.