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British citizenship
for EU nationals

We can help with the naturalisation of EU nationals through qualifying residency in the UK. Our team in London stays at the forefront of immigration and nationality laws and regulations to ensure your nationality goals are achieved.

Work and live in the UK as an EU national

As a European Union (EU) national (or the family member of an EU national), you can move to the UK to live and work. It is important that you are in the UK exercising EU treaty rights (i.e. employment, study, being self-sufficient, etc.).

On 27 October 2015, a new law was passed in the UK to prevent European Union nationals (and their family members) applying for British nationality if they do not first hold a residence card.

If you have held a residence card for 12 months (exceptions can apply), have lived in the UK for at least five years and if you meet the other set criteria (including the “good character” requirement), you could naturalise as a British citizen.

What about Brexit?

Given the recent Brexit vote and the likelihood that the UK will exit the European Union over the coming years, the status of those EU nationals living in the UK is unclear. It is important to secure your rights to live and work in the UK as soon as possible.

Good character

The good character requirement goes beyond the scope of simply being free from criminal convictions and includes (but is not limited to):

  • Traffic offences
  • Not being up-to-date with tax returns and tax payments
  • Bankruptcy
  • County Court Judgements (CCJ) or an overseas equivalent
  • Overstaying your visa (even by a single day)
  • Working when your visa did not permit it

Any person affected by the above should seek professional advice before attempting an application.

Find out more about children under 18 resident in the UK. 


Contact our citizenship team

Phone us (SA): +27 (0) 21 657 2139

Phone us (UK): +44 (0) 20 7759 7581

South Africa

Regent Square
Doncaster Road
Kenilworth 7708
Cape Town
t: +27 (0) 21 657 2120

United Kingdom

Castlewood House
77/91 New Oxford Street
t: +44 (0) 20 7759 7514


Suite 8.06
9 Yarra Street
South Yarra
Melbourne VIC 3141
t: +613 (0) 86 514 500

Hong Kong

Level 1102
The Lee Gardens
33 Hysan Avenue
Causeway Bay, Hong Kong
t: +852 3959 8681

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