close menu

Indefinite leave to remain made simple

by John Dunn | Jan 06, 2015
  • There are thousands of expats living in the UK who are aiming for permanent residency status and, eventually, a British passport. But with immigration laws being as complicated as they are, the thought of entering this bureaucratic minefield is dissuading many from pursuing indefinite leave to remain (ILR). Our visas team has put together a simple guide to explain ILR.
    3_Indefinite-Leave-to-Remain-made-simple

    ILR in a nutshell

    ILR is essentially permanent residency status in the UK and is just one step away from actual British citizenship. Once you have held IRL status for 12 months and have been living in the UK for five years you can apply for a British passport. ILR status means you may work without restriction in the UK and exit and re-enter the country multiple times.

    Who can apply?

    There are several requirements to apply for ILR, here are the basics:

    • You must be of good character.
    • You must continue living in the UK.
    • You must have sufficient knowledge of life in the UK.
    • You must be able to communicate in English to an acceptable degree.
    • You must meet the residential and income requirements.

    Residential requirements

    To meet the residential requirements surrounding ILR, you must have been resident and present in the UK for at least five years before the date of your application. During this five-year period, you must also not have spent more than 450 days outside the UK or more than 90 days in the most recent 12-month period. So if you have spent four of the last 12 months in Australia, Canada, New Zealand or South Africa you will not qualify, but if you have for instance been away on a four-week holiday during the last 12 months, you are still considered eligible.

    It's also important to note than you may not have been in breach of the UK's Immigration Rules at any time during your stay in the UK.

    Income requirements

    Those of you holding Tier 2 visas need to be aware of the new income threshold rule which applies to all ILR applications lodged after 6 April 2015. If you are on a Tier 2 visa and want to apply for ILR you will have to be earning at least £35,000 a year at the time of your application. Please note that this income requirement only applies to Tier 2 visa holders, and to no other visa category.

    How to apply

    If you meet all the criteria listed above, there’s a good chance you could be on your way to British citizenship. The first step is to apply for ILR. You have two options: Take the DIY route and work directly through the government, or hire a visa expert to assist you.

    1st Contact Visas works on a ‘no visa—no fee’ policy, so you have nothing to lose and possibly a British passport to gain. Visit 1st Contact Visas to find out more or take our free ILR assessment test.

    We are a professional services company that specialises in cross-border financial and immigration advice and solutions.

    Our teams in the UK, South Africa and Australia can ensure that when you decide to move overseas, invest offshore or expand your business internationally, you’ll do so with the backing of experienced local experts.

    • travel insurance
      The importance of purchasing travel insurance with a Tier 4 UK student visa
      May 07, 2019  |  by Guest writer
    • Passport-stamp
      25% of UK spouse visa applications are refused every year – make sure yours isn’t one
      Apr 02, 2019  |  by Sam Hopwood
    • UK flag with calculator
      How to calculate your costs before you immigrate to the UK
      Mar 29, 2019  |  by John Dunn
    • businessman multitasking
      Everything we know about the new Tier 1 Innovator visa
      Mar 29, 2019  |  by John Dunn
    • british moving van
      Shipping household goods from South Africa to the UK, what you need to know
      Mar 29, 2019  |  by Leanne Shrosbree
    • City-of-london
      Applying for a UK visa from Australia and New Zealand – what you need to know to avoid being refused
      Mar 20, 2019  |  by Sam Hopwood
    • UK Tier 1 visas set to change
      Investors out, innovators in: UK Tier 1 visas set to change
      Feb 19, 2019  |  by Gary Kockott
    • recruitment
      The UK reveals its new skills-based immigration system for EU and non-EU nationals
      Jan 22, 2019  |  by John Dunn
    • London-flag
      Why so many people moved to the UK in 2018
      Dec 12, 2018  |  by John Dunn
    • London-Eye
      Four of the most important things you need when moving to the UK
      Dec 12, 2018  |  by Leanne Shrosbree
     
     

    South Africa

    Cape Town

    Regent Square
    Doncaster Road
    Kenilworth 7708 +27 (0) 21 657 2120

    Durban

    25 Richefond Circle
    Ridgeside
    Umhlanga 4320 +27 (0) 31 536 8843

    United Kingdom

    Croydon

    One Croydon
    12-16 Addiscombe Road
    Croydon CR0 0XT +44 (0) 20 7759 7514

    Australia

    Melbourne

    9 Yarra Street
    South Yarra
    VIC 3141 +613 (0) 8651 4500

    Sable International is a trading name of 1st Contact Money Limited (company number 07070528), registered in England and Wales. We are authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK (FCA no. 517570), the Financial Services Conduct Authority in South Africa (1st Contact Money [PTY] Ltd - FSP no. 41900) and hold an Australian Financial Services Licence issued by ASIC to deal in foreign exchange (1st Contact Group - AFS Licence number 335 126).

    We use cookies to provide the best website experience for you. Using this website means that you agree to this. How we use cookies.