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My wife and I are going for a vacation to the UK this summer. I am a Norwegian citizen, my wife is a non-EEA citizen here on a family reunion visa and we live in Norway. She has a residence card, but it has no inscription about Residence with EEA/EU citizen. I believe it is a standard biometric residence card. Can she then apply for a family member of an EEA national even though we are not moving to the UK?

It is such a long and complicated application it can't really be for someone who does not intend to move there.

So do we have to apply for a standard visitor visa instead?

Appreciate any help on this.

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    Please post this question on travel. stackexchange because it is about travel even though your wife is an expat in Norway – user16259 Apr 15 '18 at 21:20
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The EEA family permit can be used for visits. Most of the questions on the application are improper for an EEA family permit application; this appears to be because the application is based on the standard visa application, but it is probably better to answer them anyway.

Some of the questions seem more appropriate for someone intending to settle in the UK, because the EEA FP can also be used for that purpose, but its true purpose is to signify the derivative right of free movement under directive 2004/38/EC, which includes a "right of residence for up to three months" that applies to temporary visitors.

The right of residence for up to three months is expressed in Article 6 of directive 2004/38/EC:

Article 6

Right of residence for up to three months

  1. Union citizens shall have the right of residence on the territory of another Member State for a period of up to three months without any conditions or any formalities other than the requirement to hold a valid identity card or passport.

  2. The provisions of paragraph 1 shall also apply to family members in possession of a valid passport who are not nationals of a Member State, accompanying or joining the Union citizen.

It is implemented in the Immigration (EEA) Regulations 2016 at number 13, which says in part:

Initial right of residence

13.—(1) An EEA national is entitled to reside in the United Kingdom for a period not exceeding three months beginning on the date of admission to the United Kingdom provided the EEA national holds a valid national identity card or passport issued by an EEA State.

(2) A person who is not an EEA national but is a family member who has retained the right of residence or the family member of an EEA national residing in the United Kingdom under paragraph (1) is entitled to reside in the United Kingdom provided that person holds a valid passport.

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