What is British Naturalisation?

British Naturalisation
Legally reviewed by: Nisha Leel In: Immigration

Can I Apply for British Naturalisation?

Sometimes, the place that we end up feeling most at home may not be where we were born. British naturalisation may be a possible option for you if you want to call the UK your permanent home.

Here at Cartwright King Solicitors, we have specialists who have dealt with a number of different cases and are particularly well-placed to be able to help you with your immigration case. We can assist you throughout your immigration application

Get in touch today for our advice and help with British naturalisation.

What is British naturalisation?

British naturalisation is another term for applying for permanent British citizenship. It is worth knowing that you do not automatically get British citizenship if you were born in the UK – it can also depend on when you were born and also your parent’s circumstances. 

When can I Apply for British Naturalisation?

There is more than one way in which you can be eligible to apply for British citizenship. These are as follows: 

You are married to or are in a civil partnership with a British citizen

Under these rules, you must have lived in the UK for the last 3 years as a partner of a British citizen. You must also have one of the following: 

  • Indefinite Leave to Remain, or
  • Settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, or
  • A permanent residence document 

You have ‘permanent residence’ status 

If you or a close family member are from the European Union, the European Economic Area or Switzerland, you can usually get permanent residence status automatically after you have been living in the UK for 5 years. To then use this to apply for naturalisation, you must then live in the UK for a further 12 months.

You have been granted indefinite leave to remain (ILR) 

If you have indefinite leave to remain, then you can apply for British naturalisation after you have held this status for 12 months. 

There are other specific ways in which you may be eligible. These include: 

  • If you have a British parent
  • If you are considered to be stateless 
  • If you have another type of British nationality 
  • If you have previously given up your British citizenship 

Applying for British naturalisation can become quite a complicated process, so it is always the best option to seek the advice and guidance of trained immigration solicitors. 

How do I Apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain? 

If you have been living in the UK on a visa but know that you would like to remain here permanently, then the step you must take before British naturalisation is applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain. 

To be eligible, you must have completed a period of continuous residence in the UK under a valid visa. Additionally, you must also fulfil some basic requirements that include: 

  • Being able to prove that you have no unspent convictions 
  • Being able to prove that you can still meet the required `English language standard
  • Being able to prove that you can pass the life in the UK test
  • Being able to meet the ‘good character’ requirement 

The documents that you will need will include: 

  • An English language test certificate 
  • A ‘Life in the UK’ pass certificate 
  • Proof of your identity, such as your current passport or travel documents 
  • Proof of your continuous residence, such as council tax statements, utility bills, mortgage statements or tenancy agreements 
  • Recent bank statements
  • Recent payslips 

When you are applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain, you must also be able to prove that you have not spent 180 days or more outside of the UK in the 12 months prior to submitting your application. 

Read more about applying for indefinite leave to remain after a spouse visa

Get in Touch with Cartwright King

When looking to apply for British Naturalisation, there are a number of different avenues that could mean that you are eligible. Whether you need help understanding if you are able to apply, or you need to first apply for indefinite leave to remain, our immigration solicitors Birmingham can help. 

Get in touch with us today for expert help and advice. 

Legal Disclaimer.

All advice is correct at time of publication.