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© Pathfynder Limited 2018. Pathfynder Solicitors is a trading name of Pathfynder Limited, a company registered in England and Wales with company registration number 10170947. The registered address is King House, 5-11 Westbourne Grove, London, W2 4UA. Authorised and regulated by the Solicitors Regulation Authority, SRA No. 629672.


British citizenship - 26 Jun 2016

British citizenshipBritish Citizens with the right of abode are entitled to live freely in the UK.

There are various different ways to become a British Citizen but the most common routes are:

- Acquiring British Citizenship at birth; and

- Naturalising as a British Citizen.

Acquisition at birth occurs if a person is born in the UK to a parent who is a British Citizen or settled in the UK at the time of the birth. Where a person is born outside the UK, they acquire British Citizenship at birth if one of their parents had British Citizenship otherwise than by descent.

There are also a number of other ways for a person to obtain British Citizenship either at birth or shortly after but these routes are not covered here.

A person can apply to naturalise as a British Citizen if they:

- Are of good character;

- Have sufficient knowledge of the English, Welsh or Scottish Gaelic language;

- Have sufficient knowledge about life in the UK;

- Intend to make the UK their main home;

- Have been lawfully in the UK for five years prior to their application;

- Have not been absent from the UK for more than 450 days over the five year period;

- Have not been absent from the UK for more than 90 days in the last 12 months prior to their application; and

- Were considered settled in the UK in the last 12 months prior to their application.

In some circumstances it is possible to apply to naturalise if the above requirements are not met e.g. where a person exceeds the absences threshold but these are not covered in this article.

If you would like to discuss your circumstances in detail, please feel free to contact us.

Please note that this article is for information only and should not be taken as legal and/or financial advice. Immigration law changes regularly and it may be the case that this page has not been updated to take into account the latest changes. If you would like advice on your personal circumstances, please feel free to contact us.