Individuals who have lived in the UK (usually 3 or 5 years) and held ILR or settle status for a certain period can usually apply for British citizenship.

Applying for British citizenship is a significant step towards permanently settling in the UK. Understanding the British citizenship application process, eligibility criteria, and gathering the necessary documents are vital for a successful outcome.

At Wembley Solicitors, we understand the complexity of the British citizenship application process and the importance of meeting all the necessary requirements. Our team will guide you through the entire process, from gathering the required documents to completing the application forms accurately.

For legal help with your British citizenship application, you can contact our British citizenship solicitors in London by calling 0203 417 3700.

  1. How to become a British citizen?
  2. Citizenship fee waiver for children under 18
  3. Who is eligible to apply for British citizenship?
  4. What are the requirements to apply for British citizenship?
  5. What is the continuous residence requirement for British citizenship?
  6. What English level is required for British citizenship?
  7. What is the Life in the UK test requirement for British citizenship?
  8. Good character requirement for British citizenship
  9. What documents are required for a British citizenship application?
  10. British citizenship application forms
  11. How to apply for British citizenship online?
  12. How to apply for British citizenship by post?
  13. How long does it take to process a British citizenship application?
  14. How much does it cost to apply for British citizenship?
  15. Solicitor for British citizenship application
  16. How much do solicitors charge for a British citizenship application?
  17. Frequently asked questions
  18. Need Legal Advice & Assistance?

How to become a British citizen?

You can apply to become a British citizen either by naturalisation or by registration depending on your circumstances and connection to the United Kingdom.

The most common route to British citizenship is through naturalisation. Other routes include registration (for those with a British parent or born in the UK under certain circumstances) and automatic acquisition (for some born in the UK or overseas to British parents).

Contact Wembley Solicitors today to schedule a consultation with our experienced British citizenship solicitors in London. Give us a call at 0203 417 3700 to discuss your case and start your journey towards becoming a British citizen.

Citizenship fee waiver for children under 18

A British citizenship fee waiver allows eligible children under the age of 18 to apply for citizenship without paying the standard application fee.

If you are considering applying for a citizenship application fee waiver for your child, contact our British citizenship solicitors today at 0203 417 3700.

Who is eligible to apply for British citizenship?

You may be eligible to apply for British citizenship if you have lived in the UK for a certain period, typically 5 years and have had ILR or settled status.

Individuals who have held indefinite leave to remain or settled status for a certain period, typically 12 months, can usually apply for British citizenship.

If you are considering applying for British citizenship through marriage, then you do not need to wait 12 months to apply for UK citizenship.

A ‘settled status’ is also known as 'indefinite leave to remain under the EU Settlement Scheme'.

You must also meet specific criteria related to residency, good character, language proficiency, and knowledge of life in the UK.

What are the requirements to apply for British citizenship?

Becoming a British citizen is a significant milestone that requires meeting certain eligibility requirements depending on the reasons for applying for UK citizenship.

The British citizenship requirements are designed to ensure that individuals who apply for citizenship have a strong connection to the United Kingdom and possess the necessary knowledge and skills to integrate into British society.

UK citizenship requirements

To be eligible to apply for British citizenship, the applicant must:

You do not need to wait 12 months after ILR if you're married to or the civil partner of a British citizen.

You must meet all other eligibility requirements depending on your circumstances. Contact our expert British citizenship solicitors for legal advice and eligibility assessment.

What is the continuous residence requirement for British citizenship?

One of the key requirements for British citizenship is meeting the residency criteria.

To be eligible to apply for British citizenship, you must have lived in the UK continuously and lawfully for a specified period, typically 5 years as a permanent resident.

To meet the continuous residence requirement, you should not have spent more than 450 days outside the UK during the 5 years before your British citizenship application. You must also not have spent more than 90 days outside the UK in the last 12 months.

British citizenship through marriage

You can apply for British citizenship if have lived in the UK for at least 3 years and you're married to or the civil partner of a British citizen.

To meet the continuous residence requirement, you should not have spent more than 270 days outside the UK during the 3 years before your British citizenship application. You must also not have spent more than 90 days outside the UK in the last 12 months.

What English level is required for British citizenship?

Proficiency in the English language is an essential component of the British citizenship requirements. Applicants aged between 18 to 65 are required to demonstrate their ability to speak and understand English.

For British citizenship, applicants can prove their knowledge of English by having an English qualification at B1, B2, C1 or C2 level on the CEFR scale.

Applicants can also meet the English language requirement by having an academic qualification taught in English or being a national of a majority English speaking country.

Who is exempt from the English language requirement?

The applicant is exempt from the knowledge of English language requirement if:

  • they are aged under 18 years, or 65 years or older on the date of their application.
  • they have a disability (physical or mental condition) which prevents them from meeting the requirement.

What is the Life in the UK test requirement for British citizenship?

Applicants are also required to demonstrate their knowledge of life in the UK. This is typically assessed through the Life in the UK test, which evaluates an individual's understanding of British history, society, and values.

The Life in the UK test is typically a multiple-choice exam, consisting of 24 questions. Applicants have 45 minutes to complete the test. The questions are based on a handbook called "Life in the United Kingdom: A Guide for New Residents," which contains essential information about the topics covered in the test.

Who is exempt from the life in the UK test?

The applicants aged under the age of 18 years, or 65 years or older are exempt from the knowledge of life in the UK test requirement. The applicants having a disability (physical or mental condition) are also exempt.

Good character requirement for British citizenship

Another significant condition is demonstrating good character. This requirement assesses an applicant's behaviour, including their criminal record, immigration history, and compliance with UK laws. Individuals with certain criminal convictions may face additional scrutiny, and serious offences can lead to a refusal of the citizenship application.

What documents are required for a British citizenship application?

When applying for British citizenship, the Home Office requires various documents to verify your eligibility and identity.

Every document must be submitted accurately and completely. Any missing or incorrect information may result in delays or the refusal of your application.

It is also essential to provide certified translations of any documents not in English or Welsh.

British citizenship document checklist

  • Correct British citizenship application form.
  • Valid passport or travel document.
  • Biometric residence permit (BRP) (if issued).
  • 2 Identical passport-sized photos.
  • Proof of continuous residence in the UK.
  • Travel history and list of absences from the UK.
  • Marriage certificate (if applicable).
  • Birth certificates of children (if applicable).
  • Proof of English language proficiency.
  • Life in the UK test pass certificate.
  • References from reputable individuals or organisations.

The above is not an exhaustive list, and additional documents may be required based on your circumstances.

At Wembley Solicitors, our experienced immigration solicitors are familiar with the British citizenship application process and can provide expert guidance to help you compile a thorough document checklist. Contact us at 0203 417 3700 to schedule a consultation and get professional assistance with your British citizenship application.

British citizenship application forms

Always check the official website of the UK Government or the Home Office to download the latest version of the application form you need. The forms and guidance can be updated, so it's important to use the most recent ones.

Applying for British citizenship involves a process that requires filling out specific forms, which vary depending on your situation. Here are some of the main forms:

  1. Form AN: This is the application form for adults applying for naturalisation as a British citizen. It's one of the most commonly used forms for individuals who have met the residency requirements and wish to become British citizens.
  2. Form MN1: This form is used for registering a child under 18 as a British citizen. The eligibility criteria can vary based on the child's circumstances, including their birthplace, their parents' citizenship status, and other factors.
  3. Form B(OS): This form is for British Overseas citizens, British subjects, British protected persons, or British Nationals (Overseas) applying for registration as a British citizen.
  4. Form T: This form is for those who are stateless and born in the UK or a British Overseas Territory, applying to register as a British citizen.
  5. Form S3: This form is for stateless persons born outside the UK or British Overseas Territories applying for registration as a British citizen.
  6. Form UKM: This form is for individuals born before 1983 to British mothers who want to register as British citizens. Before changes in the law, citizenship through the maternal line was not automatically conferred.
  7. Form S2: Application for registration as a British citizen for stateless persons born before 1 January 1983.

How to apply for British citizenship online?

Applying for British citizenship online is a convenient and efficient way to begin your journey to becoming a UK citizen. The online application portal allows you to complete the necessary forms and submit all required documentation digitally. Here, we will guide you through the process step by step, ensuring a seamless online application experience.

  1. Create an Account
  2. Fill Out the Application Form
  3. Upload Supporting Documents
  4. Pay the Application Fee
  5. Submit Your Application

Step 1: Create an Account

To get started, visit the official UK government website, and create an account. This account will serve as your portal for accessing and managing your British citizenship application.

Step 2: Fill Out the Application Form

Once you have created your account, you will be guided through the online application form. It is essential to provide accurate and complete information to avoid any delays or complications in the application process. Take your time and double-check your answers to ensure they are error-free.

Step 3: Upload Supporting Documents

As part of your British citizenship application, you will need to submit various supporting documents. These may include proof of identity, proof of residence, and evidence of your knowledge of the English language and life in the UK. The online portal will provide clear instructions on how to upload these documents securely.

Step 4: Pay the Application Fee

Once you have completed the application form and uploaded all required documents, you will need to pay the application fee. The online portal will provide various payment options, and it is essential to complete this step to ensure your application is processed.

Step 5: Submit Your Application

After paying the application fee, carefully review your entire application to ensure accuracy. Once you are satisfied with the information provided, submit your application through the online portal. You will receive a confirmation of receipt, and your application will be processed by the UK government.

Online applications are often processed faster than paper applications, reducing the waiting time for a decision on your British citizenship.

How to apply for British citizenship by post?

When it comes to applying for British citizenship, there are different options available, including applying online or by post. Here, we will guide you through the process of applying for British citizenship by post.

  1. Filling out the Application Form
  2. Submitting Your Application Package

Step 1: Filling out the Application Form

The first step is to carefully fill out the correct British citizenship application form. This form can be obtained from the Home Office's website. Take your time to read the instructions and provide accurate information.

Pay attention to any sections that require additional supporting documents or evidence, such as proof of residency or English language proficiency. Make sure to gather all required documents before submitting your application.

Step 2: Submitting Your Application Package

Once you have completed the application forms and gathered all the necessary documents, it's time to submit your application package by post. Ensure that you double-check everything to avoid any errors or missing information.

Here is a checklist to help you prepare your application package:

  • Completed application form
  • Supporting documents as per the requirements
  • Photographs as per the specifications
  • Payment for the application fee

Before sending your application, we recommend making copies of all the documents and keeping them in a safe place, as well as obtaining proof of postage for added security.

Don't navigate the application process alone - reach out to us today and benefit from our expertise. Contact us at 0203 417 3700 or email us at info@wembleysolicitors.com for comprehensive British citizenship application assistance.

How long does it take to process a British citizenship application?

On average, the processing time for a standard British citizenship application is approximately 6 months. However, this timeframe can be subject to change based on the complexity of your case, the volume of applications being processed, and any additional factors that may arise during the assessment process.

As we know, the processing time for a British citizenship application can vary, so it's highly recommended to apply well in advance of any planned travel.

How much does it cost to apply for British citizenship?

In 2024, the British citizenship application fee is £1,580 (including the £80 cost of a citizenship ceremony).

Please note that these fees are subject to change, and you should always check the most up-to-date information on the UK government's official website before applying for a UK visa or British citizenship.

Solicitor for British citizenship application

Contact our team of British citizenship solicitors in London at 020 3417 3700 for legal advice and assistance with your British citizenship application.

Our team of British citizenship solicitors will:

  • provide legal advice regarding your British citizenship application.
  • do eligibility assessment for British nationality entitlement.
  • explain the entire British citizenship application process.
  • give you a complete list of required documents in support of your application.
  • check all the supporting documents to ensure that they are sufficient and in the correct format.
  • fill out the complete application form and prepare detailed representations/cover letter for the Home Office UKVI about the Immigration Rules.
  • book an appointment for you to enrol your biometrics.
  • upload all the supporting documents.
  • liaise with the Home Office UKVI throughout the process until we receive the decision.
  • keep you updated with every stage of your application.

How much do solicitors charge for a British citizenship application?

Our British citizenship solicitors charge a fixed fee between £800-£1000 (Plus VAT) for complete legal services regarding the British citizenship application.

The agreed fixed fee will depend on the complexity of the matter and the casework involved in the matter.

Frequently asked questions

You can track the progress of your British citizenship application by using the visa and immigration tracking service provided by the UK government. This online service allows you to check the status of your application and receive updates on its progress.

You must pass the Life in the UK test, which assesses your knowledge of British customs, traditions, and institutions. Additionally, you must demonstrate proficiency in the English language, usually by passing an approved language test (unless exempt).

Having a criminal record may impact your application, particularly if you have been convicted of certain offences. Each case is assessed individually, and factors such as the nature and severity of the offences will be taken into consideration.

Hiring a British citizenship solicitor in London can be beneficial, as they have expertise in immigration law and can provide guidance and support throughout the application process. They can ensure that your application is completed accurately and advise on any legal complexities.

For British citizenship application assistance, you can contact Wembley Solicitors by calling our dedicated phone number: 0203 417 3700 or by filling in our online contact form. Our experienced British citizenship solicitors will be happy to answer your questions and provide you with the necessary support throughout the application process.

We provide expert advice, practical assistance, and professional representation to guide you through the application and decision-making process, from start to finish. 

We're authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority (SRA), so you know you're in safe hands.

Contact our solicitor today to get legal advice and assistance with your UK immigration matters.

You can call us on 02034173700 or leave your details here for a callback request regarding your legal matter.

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