British Nationality and Citizenship Law
The United Kingdom’s British Nationality and Citizenship laws are one of the most complex set of regulations in the world. The reason is the country’s previous status as an imperial power, which generated different classes of British nationals. British citizens are the most common of these classes.
For an adult, the process of applying to become a British citizen is called naturalisation while the process for children below the age of 18 is called registration. However, in specific circumstances, an adult may also apply for British nationality through registration.
Registration category is not only open for children under 18 years but also for people who are British overseas or Overseas Territory nationals, those who gave up British citizenship previously, or if you are a stateless person. Every category has different requirements.
Get Clear Guidance on British Nationality Law through Fadiga & Co:
Since British Nationality law is quite complex, therefore, you cannot receive appropriate guidance unless you consult specialists in UK immigration and nationality law. Our specialist solicitors can provide you up-to-date advice in this regard.
- We offer clear advice on the law that is applicable to your circumstances and free from legal jargon
- If required, an interpreter’s services will be provided to you so that you could communicate with us in your language
- We draft legal representations prior to submitting your application to the Home Office.
Why you need our Help?
- You must understand that Home Office charges a phenomenal fee for naturalisation application and there is no right to appeal in case of refusal
- An applicant must pass both the English language B1 qualification test and the Life in the UK test. There are exceptional circumstances where the above tests are not required. Our experts will advise you whether you required the English language test or not.
- Your application may get refused if you don’t meet the criteria of Good Character, as it is defined by the relevant Statute. Unless we guide you about it, you may never be able to understand it beforehand
- Only expert immigration and nationality lawyers can advise you whether you meet certain requirements for applying for British Nationality and Citizenship or not such as we will inform you about:
- What constitutes criminal conviction, a caution, or a civil judgement and whether your application may be affect as a result of having any of them against your name.
- Your work background from the past ten years
- If you have ever tried to enter the UK illegally in the past ten years
- If you have tried to work in the UK without undergoing appropriate legalities
This is why you need us to guide you about the process
Our process includes offering
- General guidance and advice for checking if your application meet the Home Office’s set criteria
- Through our exclusive application checking service, we analyse if you have appropriately completed your application and collected the necessary supporting documents
- After carefully evaluating your application from all aspects and preparing it fully, we submit it to the Home Office on your behalf.
- While the application is under consideration, any matters that may arise and need clarification will be dealt with by us
Areas of British Nationality and Citizenship Law that we Cover
We deal in a wide range of British Nationality and Citizenship applications including:
- British Nationality and Citizenship
As mentioned above, adults can apply for naturalisation while children under 18 years will apply for registration. The applicant of naturalisation must be
- 18 years of age or above
- Qualify for Good Character
- Be of sound mind
- Have intention of living in the UK
- Can fluently converse/communicate in English, Welsh or Scottish Gaelic
- Fulfils the required residential qualifying period (which is 3 years for spouse of civil partner of a British citizen and 5 years otherwise)
There are situations in which a person automatically qualifies for permanent residence.
- If the individual is a citizen of Switzerland or country from the in the European Economic Area (EEA)
- If the individual is a family member of such a person
- If the individual has exercised EEA free-movement rights in the UK for a period of 5 years
If you qualify for any of these situations you can apply permanent residence status, which you must hold for 12 months and then apply for naturalisation.
Registering a child as a British Citizen
Depending upon your situation, you can apply for registering a child as a British citizen. This would allow you to offer the child an opportunity to live in the UK without any visa and never even have the need to apply for visa to travel to various countries across the globe. The citizenship will also allow the child to live in any of the 28 EU member states visa-free. The requirements for UK citizen travelling to EU counties may of course change after the UK completely leave the EU.
Who can Register?
- Children born in the UK to non-UK-national parents who has become Settled in the UK or has acquired Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)
- Children having ILR but born outside the UK to non-UK or non-EU national parents
- If child was born outside UK but one of the parents or civil partners is now applying for British citizenship, then the child will be entitled for registering as British if parents’ application is approved
- Child born in the UK to an EEA national parent, who doesn’t have British citizenship but is Settled in the UK
- Child born to A8 national workers who came to the UK between 2004 and 2011 and have become Settled in the UK.
- Children born in the UK and have lived in the UK for 10 years since birth.
Registering BNO as a British Citizen
- British National Overseas (BNO) was a status created under the Hong Kong Act 1985 and came into effect from 1st July 1987
- If you happen to be a BNO, you can register as a British national
Eligibility criteria for Five Years Residence
- Applicant has lived in the UK for minimum residential qualifying period, which is five years
- Applicant has lived in the UK for five years before the date of applying
- Hasn’t spent over 450 days outside the UK during the five years period preceding the application.
- Hasn’t spent over 90 days outside the UK in the past 12 months of the five years period preceding
- Hasn’t breached any of the immigration rules at any time during the five years stay in the UK
- Applicant has remained free from immigration restrictions in the last 12 months of the five year period.
Registering a stateless person as a British Citizen
- The United Nations Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness sets the criteria for a stateless person
- UK’s regulations also fall into this convention’s terms and conditions
- The criteria are described in the Schedule 2 of the British Nationality Act 1981
- The Act lays out provision for acquiring citizenship and statuses created according to the Act by individuals who are regarded as stateless.
Our experts in immigration lawyers can advise you whether you qualify for registration as a British citizen.