British Citizenship

British Citizenship or British Nationality or Naturalisation would give the Non EEA National / EEA National the Right to live in the UK Indefinitely as a British Citizen. There are many benefits in becoming a British Citizen.

What are the benefits in becoming a British Citizen?

  • You are entitled for British Passport;
  • The holder of a British Passport need not wait in long a queue at any of the UK Airports (Heathrow Airport, Birmingham Airport, Gatwick Airport, Stanstead Airport, Luton Aiport, Manchester Airport,  Glasgow Airport, Edinburgh Airport, Belfast International, Bristol Airport, Liverpool Airport, Belfast City, Cardiff Airport, Aberdeen Airport)  during travel i.e they would have ease and quick custom clearance;
  • It offers Permanent Residency in the UK as a British Citizen;
  • Need not Apply for a UK Visa every time you wish to Enter into the UK;
  • Need not worry that your UK Visa will expire;
  • Need not spend money and time applying for a UK Visa Extension;
  • Gives you full freedom to move, travel, live, Marry in the UK;
  • Free to seek and undertake Work in the UK without any constraint or Investing in the UK or Entering into Business in the UK;
  • Gives you full voting rights in the UK during elections;
  • You will be entitled for Consular Services when you are abroad and face difficulties;
  • No time limit as to how long you are allowed to Stay in the UK lawfully.

 How to apply for British Citizenship ?

If you are Born in the UK or Qualifying Territory or in Overseas then you may qualify for a British Citizenship by virtue of your birth rights provided that you satisfy all the other Immigration Requirements.

2) British Overseas Citizen / BOC

You became a British Overseas Citizen on 1st January 1983 if you were a Citizen of the United Kingdom and Colonies (CUKC)on the 31st December and you did not become either a British Citizen or a British Overseas Territories Citizen on the 1st January 1983. Special rules were introduced in 1986 to allow British Overseas Territories Citizens from Hong Kong to acquire the new status of British (National) Overseas. Those who did not register as British Nationals (Overseas) and had no other nationality or citizenship on 30 June 1997 became British Overseas Citizen on 1st July 1997.

3)  British Overseas Territories Citizen / (BOTC)

4)  British National Overseas / (BNO)

  • British Overseas Territory; or
  • British Overseas Territories; or
  • British Overseas Citizen   

You can apply to register as a British National Overseas to gain British Citizenship. A person who was a British Overseas Territories Citizen by connection with Hong Kong was able to register as a British National (Overseas) before 1st July 1997.

5)  British Protected Person

  • Protectorates
  • Registration  

6) British Subject

  • Republic of Ireland Citizens
  • Children
  • Stateless people

7)  Other ways to become a British Citizen

  • By Adoption
  • By Descent
  • By Naturalization
  • Abandoned Children
  • Right of Abode  

Appeal on the Refusal of a British Citizenship Application

There is no right of appeal to the Immigration and Asylum Chambers or for a review, if an Application for British Citizenship is refused. When you receive the refusal decision from the Home Office it would normally be accompanied with extensive reasoning as to why you are not eligible for a British Citizenship. You may request a solicitor to put forward strong legal opinions on the reasoning as to why the Home Office should have made their decision differently.

Deprivation of British Citizenship / Removal of British Citizenship

The Secretary of State has the powers to Remove or Revoke your British Citizenship.

They may remove your British Citizenship that you obtained by way of registration or naturalisation if they find one of the following factors:

  • Exercised deception or fraud by use of false documents or cheated in the Life in the UK Test;
  • If you are found to be of not a good character and you concealed the information which became apparent now;
  • If you have obtained citizenship as the spouse of a British Citizen when you were not validly married to that person;
  • If  you have obtained ILR in the UK by claiming to hold a different nationality;
  • On public interest grounds and you would not be made stateless as a result of the removal of your British Citizenship.

Consequences of Removal of British Citizenship / Deprivation of British Citizenship

  • You stop being a British Citizen;
  • You cannot hold a British Passport;
  • Your rights to live in the UK will be lost;
  • You may be also subject to Removal from the UK in serious cases.

Dual Citizenship

When you apply for a British Citizenship you need to be aware if your country of origin recognises the Dual Citizenship or otherwise. You may risk of losing your nationality if your country of origin does not recognise the Dual Citizenship. Before you apply for British Citizenship you may wish to check what your position would be with the authorities of the country of which you are a citizen.

 Naturalisation as a British Citizen

You may Naturalise to become a British Citizen provided that you satisfy all the Immigration Requirements. Naturalisation Applications are only for an adult applicant. There are basically two ways to be Naturalised as a British Citizen.

1)      If you are married to or the Civil Partner of a British Citizen; or

2)      If you lived in the UK for five years

Requirements to be Naturalised as a British Citizen:

  • You must be 18 years old and above;
  • You must be sound mind;
  • You intend to live in the UK;
  • You must be able to communicate in English, Welsh or Scottish Gaelic to an acceptable degree;You must have sufficient knowledge of life in the UK;
  • You must be of good character.

Please take note that the Residential Requirements in the UK are  different for each category of Naturalisation Application and additionally proof of marriage or civil partnership will be required if your relying upon your British Spouse / British Civil Partner to get Naturalised.

 Registration as a British Citizen

1. If you are born in the UK on or after 1st January 1983 and lived in the UK up to the age of 10 years old.

  • Both minor and adult applicant can qualify under this category to be Registered as a British Citizen;
  • You must be born in the UK on or after 1st January 1983;
  • You must be 10 years old or more;
  • You must have lived in the UK for 10 years or more;
  • You must not have spent more than 90 days out of the UK in each of the first 10 years;
  • You must be of good character.

2. A child (under 18 years old) can apply to be Registered as a British Citizen

 In this category a child can apply to be Registered as a British Citizen by entitlement or Registered as a British Citizen at the discretion of the Home Office. Children who are

automatically British Citizen at the time of the birth will not be required to go through the Registration process to become a British Citizen.

For all registrations, the child must:

  • be under 18 on the date of application;and
  • be of good character if you are 10 years or over on the date of application.

Who can apply under this category?

  • Children born to parents who are subsequently settled in the UK after  the birth of the child;
  • Children born to parents who are not settled in the UK and are not British Citizens;
  • Illegitimate children born to British Citizen fathers;
  • Children born in the UK and lived for the first 10 years of their life ( please refer above);
  • Children born outside the UK and if the one or both parents are applying for a British Citizenship;
  • Children adopted abroad by parents who are British Citizens; 
  • Children born abroad after 13 January 2010 to a parent who is in the armed forces;
  • Children born abroad to parents who are British by decent and who are now living in the United Kingdom;
  • Children born abroad to parents who are British by decnet and who have lived in the United Kingdom in the past;
  • Children whose parents have given up and subsequently resumed British citizenship
  • Children of parent in designated service or community institution service

 Other cases where it is considered to be in the child’s best interests to be granted British citizenship.

Please take note that there are additionally specific requirements for each category above for the Registration of a child as a British Citizen. You are required to comply with all the requirements and therefore contact us for further legal advice.