There are different ways to meet the eligibility criteria for British citizenship, which is obtained through naturalisation. According to the 1981 Home Secretary Act, foreign citizens who wish to become British citizens need to satisfy a number of statutory requirements and are required to be living in the UK for at least five years before applying.
If you have been living in the UK for many years and you wish to apply for British citizenship, our experienced legal staff at Saracens Solicitors can help. A citizenship application can be quite complex, therefore seeking the advice of a specialised immigration solicitor in London is highly recommended. Not only will they help you gather the documentation required, but will also guide you through the application in order to obtain a favourable outcome.
Criteria of eligibility
The law states that there are five basic requirements for those interested to apply for a British citizenship via naturalisation. These are:
- You need to be 18 years old or older;
- You must not have committed a serious crime or immigration fraud;
- You must be currently living lawfully in the UK;
- You must meet certain English language requirements;
- You must pass successfully a test on Life in the UK.
Your immigration solicitor in London will help you gather all the documentation necessary for these requirements.
In addition to all of the above, the applicant should also have lived lawfully and continuously in the UK for at least five years before the application date and spent no more than 450 days out of the country during these years.
Similarly, people who have spent more than 90 days outside the UK in the last 12 months before the application date, will be subject to the Home Office’s discretion. Be aware, that you must have resided in the UK for at least 12 months without being subject to Immigration control (holding ILR status) and you can’t include any time spent in the UK as a member of the diplomatic corps as part of the five years.
You can also apply to register a dependent under 18, under various clauses of the British Nationality Act and dependents under the age of 18 are exempt from the requirement to pass the Life in the UK test.
If you want to learn more about these requirements contact your immigration solicitor in London today.