UK Visas: British Citizenship (Naturalisation)
A British citizen is allowed to live or work in the UK without any immigration restrictions, also known as a right of abode. If you are not a British citizen you may be eligible to apply for British citizenship through the process of naturalisation.
You must also be able to show that:
- You are of sound mind and of good character
- You intend to continue living in the UK
- You can communicate in English, Welsh or Scottish Gaelic
- You have passed the 'Life in the UK' test
- You can meet the residential requirements
Applying for British Citizenship
Naturalisation is the acquisition of British citizenship by someone who held (or continues to hold) foreign citizenship. You may be eligible to start the naturalisation application process if you are over 18 years of age and you have been living in the UK for at least five years, or you are married to a British citizen and you have three years’ residence in the UK as a spouse or civil partner.
In addition to residency requirements, there are a number of further requirements you must meet in order to begin your British citizenship application (UK naturalisation). You must be able to show that you are of sound mind and ‘good character’, you intend to continue living in the UK, and you can communicate in English, Welsh or Scottish Gaelic. You will be assessed by a ‘Life in the UK’ test that all applicants must pass.
Children under the age of 18 should register as a British Citizen. They may apply either by entitlement (i.e. if the child has a right under British nationality law) or by discretion (which requires more robust evidence in support of their particular case). If they are over the age of 10 they must be able to show they are of good character.
How to Apply
You can apply for British citizenship by making an individual application, using the NCS or using an agent or representative. Applying for British citizenship can be a long, complex process and using the services of an immigration expert is highly recommended.
The Home Office calculated that in 2015 a total of 254 British citizenship applications were refused due to ‘incomplete applications’ and a further 1251 applications were refused due to a ‘Delay in replying to enquiries from UKVI’.
UK Visas is registered with the Office of the Immigration Service Commissioner (OISC) to act on applicant’s behalf for British citizenship applications. Contact our team for expert advice on all British nationality law and British citizenship concerns.
After you have applied
Once you have applied you will receive a letter acknowledging your application, which may take up to 4 weeks. The decision regarding your application may take up to 6 months, during which time you will be notified if there is an issue or you need to provide further information.
Anyone over the age of 18 whose application is successful will be invited to a citizenship ceremony. These ceremonies are organised by your local council and are usually presented in groups. During the citizenship ceremony you will be asked to make an oath of allegiance or an affirmation and a pledge, promising to respect the rights, freedoms and laws of the UK.
Once you have obtained your British citizenship you will be able to apply for a British passport.
Our fee for managing a British citizenship application is £500 + VAT per applicant.
The Home Office fee is £1282 per applicant. This includes the £80 ceremony fee.
Our fee for managing a Registration as a British Citizen for a child is £300 + VAT per applicant. The Home Office fee is £973 per child.