British Citizenship

To obtain British citizenship is a dream come true for many persons. There are, of course, many advantages to obtaining British citizenship. This include: unrestricted entry to the UK; no work restrictions; a British passport; and enjoying the same benefits as a person born as a British citizen.

When you obtain British citizenship you do not necessarily have to forfeit your current citizenship. Many countries allow their citizens to have dual nationality.

How to qualify for British Citizenship

After you have acquired Indefinite Leave to Remain, also known as Permanent Residence, in the United Kingdom, you may wish to apply to become a British citizen. You may also qualify for British Citizenship through Registration or through Right of Abode in the UK.

There are two separate sets of requirements that must be met in order for a person to apply for British Citizenship. This depends on whether a person is married to a British national or not.

NOT Married to a British Citizen

For persons who are not married to British citizens the most important points to satisfy are: You have to;

  • Be lawfully resident in the UK for at least 5 years.
  • Hold Indefinite Leave to Remain for 1 year.
  • You may not be outside the UK for more than 450 days over the 5 year period preceding the date that you submit your application.
  • You may not be absent from the UK for more than 90 days in the most recent 12 months.
  • Be physically present in the UK on the date that the UK Home Office receives your application for British Citizenship. You also have to be in the UK 5 years prior to the date.
  • Ensure that your tax and National Insurance affairs in the UK is in order and up to date.
  • Fulfill the criteria of ‘good character’.

Married to a British Citizen

For those who are married to British citizens the requirements are similar, but with a few differences. The key requirements to be satisfied for those with a British spouse are as follows: You have to;

  • Be lawfully resident in the UK for at least 3 years.
  • Hold Indefinite Leave to Remain at the date that you submit your citizenship application. But, you do not need to have this status for any particular length of time.
  • You may not be outside the UK for more than 270 days over the 3 year period preceding the date that you submit your application.
  • You may not be absent from the UK for more than 90 days in the most recent 12 months.
  • Be physically present in the UK on the date that your application for British Citizenship is received by the UK Home Office. You also have to be in the UK 3 years prior to the date.
  • Ensure that your tax and National Insurance affairs in the UK is in order and up to date.
  • Fulfill the criteria of ‘good character’.

For more information on the criteria of the British Citizenship application, or to submit your application, contact us today.