Let's make sure we are prepared for life outside the European Union
We have all had a tough year and while we are still working together to beat coronavirus we also have to be ready for life outside the European Union.
The transition period for the UK's withdrawal ends on 31 December 2020 and this will mean different things for all of us depending whether we are UK or EU citizens, or if we do business with the EU.
We can find out how we need to prepare by visiting https://www.gov.uk/transition, but some key things to be aware of are:
- British citizens travelling to a European Union country after 31 December should check their passport is valid for travel and have travel insurance that includes health cover in case they can't use the European Health Insurance Card (EHIC).
- Owners of pets or assistance dogs should contact their vet at least four months before travelling to make sure the animal is able to travel to the EU. The animal cannot be taken without the proper documents.
- Drivers should put a GB sticker on the back of their vehicle if it's registered in the UK, or they could get fined even if the number plate already shows GB with a Euro symbol.
- EU citizens who are living in the UK by 31 December 2020, must apply to the EU Settlement Scheme at https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families/applying-for-settled-status by 30 June 2021 in order to work in the UK on the same terms as they do now.
Businesses trading with companies in the EU can also get a wide range of advice on the website.
Councillor Ian Moran, Leader of West Lancashire Borough Council, said: "The coronavirus has been at the forefront of our minds for most of the year, but let's all make sure we are prepared as best as possible for life after the EU."