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Many people staying in the UK have pondered whether they should stay on their indefinite leave to remain (ILR) or convert their status to full British Citizenship. Here are the key things you should consider if you’re trying to decide what to do.

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The importance of ILR

Once you’ve spent five continuous years in the UK on a valid visa, you are able to get ILR. This will allow you to live and work in the UK for as long as you wish. It also allows you to re-enter the country multiple times without restrictions.

After you’ve attained your ILR you won’t have to pay to extend your status. However, if you leave the UK for more than two years your ILR status has the possibility of being revoked. It also helps if you are a student as you will be considered a “home student” rather than an “international student” and your university and college fees will be subsidised.

How do I naturalise?

While holding ILR is a great position to be in when living in the UK, turning it into full UK citizenship is a common practice. As a British citizen, your rights, and those of your family, are far more secure. But before you get underway with your application for British citizenship, make sure you meet the requirements below.

If you are married to a British Citizen, you are able to apply to naturalise immediately after you have gained ILR.

Some of the requirements for the application are:

  • Have not been outside of the UK for more than 90 days per year for 3 years preceding your application
  • Pass an English language test
  • Have sufficient knowledge about life in the UK
  • Be of good character

If you are not married to a British citizen you can only apply to naturalise after you have held ILR for a year.

Some of the requirements of the application are:

  • Have not been outside of the UK for more than 90 days per year for 5 years preceding your Naturalisation application
  • Pass an English language test
  • Have sufficient knowledge about life in the UK
  • Be of good character

Attaining your UK citizenship opens many opportunities for you as it is one of the world’s strongest passports. Get hold of a UK immigration expert to find out if you can start your application today.


Apply for full UK citizenship by contacting our immigration team today. Give us a call on +44 (0) 20 7759 7580 or email us on immigration@sableinternational.com and we’ll be in touch.

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