British Citizenship

All applicants for naturalisation, including those applying to naturalise on the basis of marriage, must passed life in the UK' which includes ESOL B1 test.

British Naturalization/British Citizenship Application

Naturalisation is the legal process by which a non-British adult becomes a British citizen. An application has to be made to the Home Office and if the criteria set out in the British Nationality Act 1981 are met then the application will be granted and the person can attend a ceremony to become a British citizen and obtain a Certificate of Naturalisation. Around 160,000 foreign nationals became British citizens in this way in 2019.

The application is normally made and paid for online via the website, although a paper form, Form AN, can still be used. At the time of writing the fee was £1,330, of which only £80 (the administrative cost for the citizenship ceremony) will be refunded if the application is refused.

The requirements for naturalisation include a set period of lawful residence in the United Kingdom, possession of permanent immigration status, passing the “good character” test, passing the “Life in the UK” test and taking an oath of allegiance to Her Majesty the Queen at a formal citizenship ceremony. In this blog post we’re taking a quick look through these core requirements to explain what they mean and how the good character test is interpreted by the Home Office.

There is a residency requirement which is: 

    • you must have lived in the UK for at least 5 years, 
    • in that time, you must have not spent more than 450 days outside the UK, 
    • spent no more than 90 days (3 months) outside the UK in the last 12 months, 
    • if you are from outside the EEA, you had settlement also knows as ILR for the last 12 months in the UK, 
    • if you are an EEA national, there is a requirement to provide a permanent residence document which will confirm you had permanent residence status for the last 12 months, 
  • and you have not broken any immigration laws whilst in the UK  

Similarly, if your spouse is a British citizen you can apply for citizenship which also has requirements which include: