Thursday, 28 October 2021
The new Withdrawal Agreement biometric residency card The new Withdrawal Agreement biometric residency card

Are you a UK national living in Croatia?

Written by  The Dubrovnik Times Apr 20, 2021

If you were resident in Croatia before 1 January 2021, your rights and those of your family members are covered by the Withdrawal Agreement which was agreed between the EU and the UK. Your rights including the right to remain living in Croatia are ensured for as long as you remain resident here.

The new Withdrawal Agreement biometric residency card

For those UK nationals and their family members covered by the Withdrawal Agreement, the Croatian government has introduced a new biometric residency card which provides evidence of your rights under the Withdrawal Agreement. Your rights are lifelong for as long as you remain settled in Croatia.

The reason why it’s important to have the new card is that it gives you the clearest evidence of your rights in Croatia under the Withdrawal Agreement. And it’s also a useful document to show at the border when travelling in and out of Croatia to prevent having your passport stamped or getting questioned about your reasons for travel.

You should now request your new card from your local police station if you haven’t done so already. Although the card isn’t mandatory you could be fined if you don’t get it by 30 June.

With or without the card your rights are protected under the Withdrawal Agreement if you were settled in Croatia before 1 January 2021, but you will avoid being fined if you obtain it.

You can find information on how to obtain the card on our Living in Croatia guide ( You’ll also find the request form from the Croatian government there. (

It’s also important that you read the Croatian government’s guidance ( on what documentation you need to take along with you when requesting your new card.

Check your access to healthcare and register for healthcare if you are eligible

Under the Withdrawal Agreement, if you were living in Croatia before 1 January 2021, your rights to access healthcare in Croatia stays the same provided you remain resident and you meet the requirements of the Croatian public health system.
This includes those who hold an S1 form (i.e. in receipt of a UK state pension or a qualifying exportable benefit) and use the S1 form to access healthcare in Croatia.

If you are in possession of a valid Croatian health card (from the HZZO), this remains valid and when it expires, you will be able to renew it if you meet the requirements.

If you are entitled to a European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) issued by Croatia, this card remains valid when you visit the UK and EU countries for any necessary medical care during a temporary stay.

Remember that the Croatian EHIC is not an alternative to travel insurance, and you should always make sure you travel with insurance that covers your needs.

If you are an S1 holder living in Croatia and you have a UK European Health Insurance Card (UK EHIC), this card remains valid for use across the EU for any necessary treatment, until the card expires. Once your EHIC expires you can apply online for a new card at

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KEEP CHECKING our Living in Guide on for the latest information

Driving licences

If you are resident in Croatia, you should exchange your UK driving licence for a Croatian one.

You can do this at the nearest police station regardless of whether you have either temporary or permanent residence in Croatia. To exchange your licence, you will need the following - 

• your original UK driving licence and translation
• payment slip
• administrative fee
• a 35 x 45 mm photograph

For further advice/information, please continue to check our Living in Croatia guide, as well as the Croatian Ministry of Interior website here (

In terms of car registration, we have had a few queries from UK Nationals who have been advised by the Croatian re-registration facility that they would need green plates (3rd country nationals rule) going forward. This is something we are working on with the Croatian authorities to clarify, as we believe that those UK Nationals in scope, should not have to change the format of their licence plates.

KEEP CHECKING our Living in Guide on for the latest information

Staying up-to-date

If you are a UK national who was living in Croatia before 1 January 2021 the key action you need to take is to request your new Withdrawal Agreement residency card. You can also sign up to our Living in Croatia guide on where we publish the very latest information on your rights under the Withdrawal Agreement. You can also sign up to email alerts to this guide and follow the British Embassy Zagreb on Facebook and Twitter


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