Indefinite Leave to Remain

Your right to apply for settlement will depend on your current immigration category.

There are strict requirements to qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain. These depend on which visa you are currently on and for how long you have been resident in the UK. 

Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

Your right to apply for settlement will depend on your current immigration category. The Immigration Rules are subject to change and applicants will need to meet the Rules in force at the date of application.

If you have been living in the United Kingdom for five or ten years on a lawful basis, you may become eligible to apply for indefinite leave to remain. Once you have indefinite leave to remain, you will be able to live or work here without applying for any further permission from the Home Office.

You may be unsure as to when you become eligible to apply for indefinite leave to remain, especially if you have spent time outside the UK or there have been periods when you are unclear what your immigration status was. Whatever your situation, we can advise you in a one-off consultation or prepare the entire application for you.

 

What is Indefinite Leave to Remain?

Indefinite Leave to Remain, or Permanent Residence, grants an applicant the right to live and work in the UK without any immigration restrictions, and entitles them to apply for naturalisation.

What you need to know about Indefinite Leave to Remain

There is no time limit on Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK but it is important to understand that the status can be lost. For example, you should avoid spending periods of more than two years outside the UK as this may lead to the loss of Indefinite Leave to Remain. It may also be revoked if you commit an offence that could lead to you being deported from the UK, or for reasons of national security.

 

Postal applications for Indefinite Leave to Remain can take up to six months to be processed and completed, during which time you will need to surrender your passport. Appointments are available for a same-day decision, the waiting time for this is between four to six weeks.

Routes to ILR

Routes to ILR

 

2 years’ route towards obtaining ILR:

  • Tier 1 Investor (Accelerated route)

3 years’ route towards obtaining ILR:

  • Tier 1 Investor (Accelerated route)
  • Tier 1 Entrepreneur (Accelerated route)

5 years’ route towards obtaining ILR / PR:

  • Tier 1 Investor
  • Tier 1 Entrepreneur
  • Tier 1 General / Highly-Skilled Migrant
  • Tier 2 General (Work)
  • Partner (Spouse, Unmarried Partner, Civil Partner, Same-sex Partner)
  • EEA Residence Card
  • Parent
  • Ancestry
  • Asylum

6 years’ route towards obtaining ILR:

  • Discretionary Leave to Remain

10 years’ route towards obtaining ILR:

  • Long Residence
  • Partner (Spouse, Unmarried Partner, Civil Partner, Same-sex Partner)
  • Parent
  • Private Life

 

 

Key Requirements for ILR

Life in the UK test 

You will need to show that you have Knowledge of Language and Life in the UK (KOLL) by taking the Life in the UK Test (LUK) and producing an English test certificate or qualification above the CEFR Level B1.

 

Once you have passed the Like in The UK test, you do not need to retake it to qualify for British Citizenship.

 

If you are under the age of 18 or over the age of 65 you are exempt from this requirement.

Approved English language qualifications

You can prove your knowledge of English by having a recognised English test qualification from an approved test centre.

You need to have a certificate to prove you have the qualification, or be able to view your results online.

You can only use English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) qualifications if they’re on the list. You can’t use other qualifications, eg GCSEs, A levels or National Vocational Qualifications (NVQs).

Common grounds for Refusal

If you fail to meeting specific eligibility criteria for your settlement route
If your circumstances have changed since being granted the visa
If you have excessive number of days out of the UK within the recognized period of time
If you have criminal convictions
If you have gaps in your work, relationship etc.
If you have failed to pay taxes and keep HMRC updated 
Indefinite Leave to Remain is lost through absence from the United Kingdom for a period exceeding two years continuously.
If you lost your Indefinite Leave to Remain, you must apply for a Returning Resident visa before attempting to enter the UK.

ILR - FAQs

Am I eligible to apply?

Qualification criteria vary depending on the type of visa status you have held in the UK, with some operating on a points-based system.

When you can apply for Indefinite leave to Remain depends on the visa held:

  • Partner of a British Citizen or Person settled in the UK visa: after two years for visas issued prior to 9 July 2012, after five or ten years if applied on or after 9 July 2012
  • Tier 1 visa: after five years
  • Tier 2 visa: in limited circumstances only, after five years
  • UK ancestry visa: after five years
  • EU nationals and dependants: after 5 years
  • Discretionary Leave to Remain: six years
  • Long residence: after ten years’ continuous legal residency in the UK
  • Returning resident: if settled in the UK prior to departure and returning to the UK within two years of departure, then may be able to apply immediately on return

What will I need to show to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain?

If you are aged between 18 and 64 then as part of your ILR application, you will need to:

  • Pass the Knowledge of Life in the UK Test
  • Pass a recognised English language test

What if the application is refused?

You may resubmit an application however it is important to understand why the application failed in the first instance and how this can be addressed or rectified, for example an error in completing the form, the incorrect fee paid or failure on discretionary grounds.

I have criminal convictions will this affect my application?

Yes, previous offences and convictions are likely to affect your application, although this does depend upon the type of conviction or offence.

Settlement / ILR (Indefinite Leave to Remain) allows you to stay in the UK without any time restrictions.

Individuals who have indefinite leave to remain can in certain circumstances apply for British citizenship as soon as they qualify.

 

Individuals with British citizenship can live and work in the UK, free of any immigration controls, and can leave and enter the UK as they wish.

 

There are strict requirements to qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain. These depend on which visa you are on, and for how long you have been resident in the UK. Processing times also vary greatly depending on your visa class.

 

Do you need help with an Indefinite Leave to Remain application?

 

Contact Pahl & Associates today!

 

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