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Visas update: Children of unmarried British fathers born before 2006 can now claim British citizenship

by John Dunn | May 01, 2015
  • As of 6 April 2015, section 65 of the Immigration Act 2014 came into force making provisions within the British Nationality Act 1981 to allow anyone who was born before 1 July 2006, regardless of age, to apply for British citizenship through a UK-born father. We look at what this change means for you.

    Before 1 July 2006, those born to British fathers could only claim British citizenship if their parents were married.

    If a child was born to unmarried parents, an application to register a child under 18 would have been possible but these were considered at the discretion of the Home Secretary and citizenship could not be guaranteed.

    Now, thanks to the recent enactment of the Immigration Act 2014, those who were previously disadvantaged by the earlier law can obtain citizenship through their UK-born father, irrespective of whether their parents were married.

    Proof of eligibility

    To qualify for citizenship under the new conditions, amongst other things, the applicant  will need to be able to prove that they would have been eligible for UK citizenship if their parents had been married at the time of their  birth.  Evidence of paternity will be required.


    If you qualify for British citizenship with these recent changes, you may need to pay a registration fee. Where applicable, a child registration application will be subject to an application fee of £749.  In all other cases, the applicant will only be subject to an £80 charge to attend a citizenship ceremony.

    If you think you qualify under these new regulations, contact us for more information on +44 (0) 2077597528 or email us at

    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.

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