Discover how you can become a British citizen through your grandparent
Born after 1 January 1983 (Under 18)
There are special provisions in British nationality law for children under 18 that may make it possible for you to claim British nationality. It is important to take action and process your British citizenship application before a child turns 18. After they turn 18, several rights to British nationality fall away and can be lost forever.
Born after 1 January 1983 (18 and over)
An adult born outside of the UK after 1 January 1983 with a UK-born grandparent may have a claim to British citizenship by descent if:
- They had a UK-born grandfather who was in Crown service at the time of the relevant parent’s birth
- A parent:
- Had a UK-born mother
- Did not have a UK-born father
- Was registered as a British citizen between 2 February 1979 and 31 December 1982
- You or a parent were born in a former British colony, subject to further criteria being met.
Born before 1 January 1983
Those born outside of the UK between 1 January 1949 and 31 December 1982 and who have a UK-born grandparent may be able to claim British citizenship in certain circumstances.
This is a complex area of British nationality and every case must be assessed on an individual basis.
The following are the most common ones:
- You (or a parent) were born in a former British territory. This excludes the main Commonwealth countries of 1949 (Australia, Canada and New Zealand) but includes India, South Africa and (Southern) Rhodesia at various times
- You or a parent was registered as a British citizen, a citizen of the UK and colonies or a federal citizen of Rhodesia and Nyasaland
- A parent was in Crown service at the time of your birth
- Your parents married before 1949 and your paternal grandfather was born in the UK.
- Your maternal grandfather was born in the UK and you were born in a "foreign country" (including SA, the USA and most European countries)
Born before 1 January 1949
Those born outside of the UK before 1949 and who have a UK-born grandparent may claim British citizenship in certain circumstances. These are also complex cases and each claim must be assessed on an individual basis.
Typically, but not always, claims arise in one of these three situations:
- You and your parent are not born in a Commonwealth country and you were born before 1915
- You or a parent were born in a former British territory
- Woman married to a British man before 1949
British citizenship assessment
Discover if you qualify for British citizenship through your heritage. Our online assessment uses your personal circumstances, and those of your parents and grandparents, to let you know your chances of attaining a British passport.Start your assessment