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1. Dear *****, you need a continuous period of residence in the UK for five years in order to successfully acquire a permanent residence card as an EU citizen. The form you apply upon is EEA(PR) which is a 85 page form and the parameters I am going to give you are set out in the Guidance Notes attaching to that application form.
2. Essentially, you cannot be absent from the UK during this five year period of continuous residence for more than six months in any one year period. Total absences during the five year period must not exceed 450 days and you must not be absent for more than 90 days in the year before you make your application.
3. In your situation, where you have been absent upon occasions for more than six months, that would mean any five year period would start again. So, as things stand, where you are only in the UK occasionally, even though your business is UK based, you would not qualify for a Permanent Residence card.
4. If you were in the UK continuously for five years in any nine year period, you may still apply. However, in your question, you suggest it was 2012 when this was the case, over five years ago. This would not mean you were in the UK for five continuous years in the last nine.
5. Ultimately, I would suggest you make your decision as to whether to work in the UK based on economic considerations. You will still be able to work periodically in the UK after Brexit if you are offered employment. Strictly speaking, you don't need Permanent Residence to do this.
6. The other alternative is to adopt a working policy whereby you spend the necessary time in the UK over the next five years and obtain permanent residence.
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