The UK, being a country in the European Union (at least until March 2019) is subject to Directive 2004/38/EC which permits workers, students and self-sufficient EU nationals and their family members of any nationality to live in the UK.
The UK can be rather hostile in letting EU nationals exercise their treaty rights in the UK. The Home Office and UK Border Agency tries to force you to apply for an EEA Family Permit, despite the case of McCarthy reaching the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Justice in a case which should never have even existed since wording of the Directive seems clear enough.
On three occasions we have arrived in the UK specifically requesting to be landed under EEA rules,
- One was handled completely incorrectly, with ‘no recourse to public funds' being stamped in the passport. We tried to speak to another border agent afterwards who did not know what to do either.
- One was sort of correct but they did not give the correct stamp. He put the usual tourist entry stamp (rounded corners) without any other stamp. On a legal basis this may have been enough because it was not endorsed with the ‘no recourse to public funds' stamp, but it did not have the correct one shown in the picture above.
- The last time round was correct but the border agent was inexperienced, having worked there for 1.5 years, admitting she did not know what to do. I guided her through stating I wanted the ‘code 1A stamp' under EEA Treaty rules because we have an Article 10 residence card issued by another country. I showed her this page along with a letter I received from the Home Office explicitly stating my rights.
So next time you get to the UK as an EEA national, or a UK Citizen arriving under ‘Surinder Singh' situations without the EEA Family Permit, you should state clearly on the non-EEA national's landing card that you are “exercising Treaty rights” and that you want to receive a “Code 1A stamp”.