You might be able to apply for British citizenship by naturalisation if you are over 18 and have had ILR or Settled Status in the UK for at least 12 months.
To be eligible and apply for naturalisation as a British citizen, you must meet the eligibility requirements in accordance with the British Nationality Act 1981.
Contact our British citizenship lawyer now on 0161 989 9370 to get legal advice about how to apply for naturalisation and information about eligibility requirements.
- What is naturalisation as a British citizen?
- When can I apply for naturalisation after ILR?
- What are the requirements for naturalisation?
- Residency requirements for naturalisation
- English language requirements for naturalisation
- Life in the UK test
- Documents required to apply for naturalisation
- How to apply for Naturalisation?
- UK citizenship processing time after biometrics
- How much does it cost to apply for British citizenship?
- Need help with the British citizenship application?
- Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
What is naturalisation as a British citizen?
Naturalisation is the process by which a non-British citizen becomes a British citizen. It is one of the most common ways to obtain British citizenship.
Naturalisation as a British citizen gives you the same rights and privileges as someone who was born in the UK as a British citizen, including the right to live and work in the UK, access to healthcare and education, and the right to vote and stand for public office.
To be eligible for Naturalisation, you must have lived in the UK for a certain period of time, which is usually at least five years (or three years if you are married to a British citizen). You must also meet other requirements, such as being of good character, passing the Life in the UK test, and meeting English language proficiency requirements.
If you are eligible, you can apply for Naturalisation by submitting an application to the Home Office, along with the required documents and fees. The application process can take several months, and you may be asked to attend an interview or provide additional information or documents.
If you are not a British citizen, you might be able to apply for British citizenship either by naturalisation or registration, depending on your circumstances.
When can I apply for naturalisation after ILR?
You can apply for British citizenship by naturalisation 12 months after obtaining your ILR (Indefinite Leave to Remain) or Settled Status in the UK.
If you are applying for British citizenship by marriage, you do not need to wait 12 months to apply.
What are the requirements for naturalisation?
You must meet the eligibility requirements of the British Nationality Act 1981 to be eligible to apply for British citizenship by naturalisation.
To apply for British citizenship by naturalisation, you must meet the following eligibility requirements:
- Age: You must be 18 years of age or older, or if you are aged between 16 and 18, must have parental consent to apply.
- Residence: You must have been in the UK for at least five years and held settled status for at least 12 months. There should be no gap in your residence in the UK of more than 450 days during the five-year period or more than 90 days in the last 12 months.
- Good Character: You must have good character, meaning you have not committed any serious crimes or immigration offences.
- Knowledge of language and life in the UK: You must have passed the Life in the UK Test and meet the English language requirement by passing an approved English language test.
- Intentions: You must intend to continue to live in the UK, and must not have spent more than 90 days abroad in the last 12 months before applying.
Read the guidance for the full list of eligibility requirements for British citizenship applications.
You must also meet all the other eligibility requirements depending on type of application and your personal circumstances. Please contact us for an initial assessment to determine your eligibility, and to discuss the options.
Residency requirements for naturalisation
To meet the residency requirements for citizenship, the applicant should have lived in the UK for at least 5 years before the date of your application.
The applicant should not have spent more than 450 days outside the UK during the 5 years before your application and should not have spent more than 90 days outside the UK in the last 12 months.
Foreign spouses of British citizens may be able to apply after 3 years of lawful residence in the country.
English language requirements for naturalisation
If you are applying for British citizenship by naturalisation and you're 18 or over then you might need to prove your knowledge of the English language.
The British citizenship applicants must meet the English language requirements to prove that they can read, write, speak and understand English to a certain level on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) scale.
You can prove your knowledge of the English language by having either an English qualification at the B1 level or a degree taught in English.
Life in the UK test
The Life in the UK test is a compulsory requirement to be eligible to apply for British citizenship.
The main object of the Life in the UK test is to prove that the applicant has adequate knowledge of British life such as British values, history, traditions and everyday life.
The Life in the UK test is a computer-based multiple-choice question test based on the Life in the UK handbook.
You will have 45 minutes in total to answer 24 multiple-choice questions and You must score 75% or more to pass the test.
Documents required to apply for naturalisation
The applicants will need to provide several documents in the support of their naturalisation application depending on their personal circumstances.
You must provide the following documents when you apply for British citizenship by naturalisation:
- Your current passport or the valid ID document
- Your BRP card (if have been issued to you)
- Proof you have Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) or settled status
- List of absences from the UK
- Proof of knowledge of English or English language test certificate
- Life in the UK test certificate
Read the guidance for the full list of documents you'll need to provide in the support of your British citizenship application.
How to apply for Naturalisation?
Contact our UK immigration and nationality lawyer today to get legal advice about how to apply and the requirements of a British citizenship application.
Read the guidance on how to apply for British citizenship and the step-by-step process.
UK citizenship processing time after biometrics
You should get a decision on your British citizenship application within 3-6 months. However, Some UK citizenship applications may take longer than 6 months depending on the complexity of the matter.
Time starts once you've applied for British citizenship and attended your biometric appointment.
How much does it cost to apply for British citizenship?
- £1,330 is the fee for British citizenship by Naturalisation application.
- £1,012 is the fee to register a child under 18 as a British citizen.
Here are some common other costs associated with applying for British citizenship:
- £19.20 Biometrics fee
- £50 Life in the UK test fee (unless you are exempt)
- £150 approx. English language test fee (unless you are exempt)
- Immigration lawyer fees (if using legal services to boost your chances of success & avoid mistakes)
The above is a general list of costs associated with British citizenship applications. There may be additional costs such translation fee depending on your circumstances.
Please note that these fees are subject to change, and you should always check the most up-to-date information on the UK government's official website before applying for a visa.
Immigration lawyer fees
Our expert UK citizenship & nationality lawyer will guide you through every step of the British citizenship application process including advice about legal requirements and eligibility criteria.
At Rex Law Chambers, our UK nationality lawyer charges a fixed fee between £800-£1000 for our complete legal services in relation to your citizenship application. The agreed fixed fee will depend on the complexity of the matter and the casework involved in the matter.
Need help with the British citizenship application?
If you need legal advice or help with your British citizenship application, our lawyer can provide legal assistance.
Our citizenship lawyer will assess your eligibility and personal circumstances to determine if you can apply for British citizenship and meet the requirements.
British citizenship lawyer at Rex Law Chambers will:
- advise you about eligibility criteria and the requirement;
- provide you with a comprehensive checklist of supporting documents;
- fill in and submit your British citizenship application;
- check all the supporting documents;
- upload all the supporting documents online in their correct format and order;
- schedule your biometrics appointments;
- prepare a cover letter or letter of representation to support your application.
- dealing and responding to any enquiries or correspondence from the Home Office;
- do all the follow-up work on your British citizenship application until a decision is received from the Home Office UKVI.
Contact our experienced UK citizenship & nationality lawyer on 0161 989 9370 or fill in our enquiry form to get reliable & confidential legal advice and assistance with your British citizenship application.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Residency requirement, good character requirement, English language test and Life in the UK test are the 4 key requirements to apply for British citizenship.
You must meet all other eligibility requirements depending on your personal circumstances and type of British citizenship application.
You can become a British citizen after living at least 3 years in the UK as a spouse of a British citizen. You must meet all the eligibility requirements of the British Nationality Act 1981 to apply for UK citizenship through marriage.
Yes, the UK does allow dual citizenship with other countries which means you can be a British citizen and also a citizen of other countries at the same time.