Our team of expert solicitors recently received some wonderful news that a returning client (the Applicant) had been granted British Citizenship. This was the second occasion the client had instructed the firm as she had previously instructed the firm to prepare her EEA Permanent Residence application. The Client had contacted us informing us that she would like to book a further consultation as she now wanted to make a British Citizenship Application. Upon instruction, our specialist immigration team successfully prepared the application and received a decision on the application before the 6 months standard processing time.
British Citizenship Application: Background
The Applicant was a Polish national who first entered the UK as an EEA national exercising her Treaty Rights as a Student. In our consultation with the Applicant, we addressed the issues surrounding the Applicant’s current circumstances. The Applicant had concerns about whether she would be able to submit a successful Naturalisation application as she had committed a few Road Traffic Offences that impacted on whether the Applicant satisfied the Good Character requirement.
“Good character” is not defined in the British Nationality Act 1981, there is no statutory guidance for its interpretation of a British Nationality Application. In general, it means respecting the rights and freedoms of the UK, observing the law and fulfilling their duties and obligations as a resident of the UK. Annex D to chapter 18 of the Home Office guidance: Nationality Policy and Casework Instruction provides guidance to how the Good Character Requirement should be assessed for adults as well as young persons in a British Nationality Application.
Both adult and minor applicants must disclose all criminal convictions within and outside the UK including non-custodial sentences, out of court disposals (e.g. fines, caution, community sentences) pending prosecutions, dishonesty (e.g. failure to disclose convictions) and breach of immigration rules in a British Nationality Application.
Each offence has a respective qualifying “rehabilitation period” under Annex D 2(i). For example, if an adult was imprisoned or detained in a young offender institution for up to 6 months, the rehabilitation period is 7 years, and 3.5 years if the offender was a minor at the time of conviction. The application should be refused unless relevant rehabilitation period has passed.
Criminal records play a significant part in the assessment of the Good Character Requirement in a British Nationality Application, but the mere existence or lack of a criminal record is not in itself a conclusive indication. It used to be the case that the caseworker could exercise the Home Secretary’s discretion to disregard a single caution considering all other information in specific circumstances, it is not clear how the discretion is exercised anymore or at all, and it is pointed out that there is need to promote young persons’ best interests as a primary consideration in a British Nationality Application.
After speaking to our expert solicitors, the Applicant was reassured that our solicitors often assisted clients in similar situations to hers. The Applicant instructed us to prepare and assist with the submission of her Naturalisation application. Our solicitors were able to prepare an exceptional application and eliminate any concerns, resulting in a successful application.
How we can assist submit a successful British Citizenship Application
In this particular case, the client had informed our team that she would like to submit her application as strong as possible but without delaying the case. Our Solicitors prepared a bespoke documents list outlining all the necessary documents required for a successful application. Our solicitors successfully guided the Applicant through the application process and prepared outstanding legal representations, which directly tackled all the issues, involved in the Applicant’s application and highlighted how the Applicant met the UK immigration rules.
In addition to the legal representations, our team of solicitors also provided multiple substantial reviews of her documents to ensure that Applicant submits the correct documentary evidence in the correct format, which meets the Home Office’s requirements. We also prepared and assisted the Applicant with the AN Naturalisation application form.
Eligibility for a British Citizenship Application
In order to submit a successful British Citizenship Application, Applicants must ensure they meet the following requirements:
- Applicants must be at least 18 or over;
- Applicants must be of sound mind and have good character;
- Applicants must intend on making the UK their main place of home;
- Applicants must have sufficient knowledge of English Language & Sufficient knowledge of life in the UK; and
- Applicants must meet the residency requirements.
Those wishing to apply for Naturalisation must make a British Citizenship Application, therefore, should consult with a member of our expert immigration team so we can consider the eligibility criteria and explore whether, among other requirements, they meet the good character and residency requirements.
Using Legal Representation to Submit a British Citizenship Application
Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration status. It is possible to instruct an immigration and visa legal representative to submit a British Citizenship Application.
Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your UK British Citizenship Application succeeds, all necessary documents must be provided.
This can be a significant administrative task and you will need to submit the correct documentary evidence. The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your British Citizenship Application meets the Immigration Rules.
Successful British Citizenship Application
Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your immigration status and the merit of your British Citizenship Application before your matter even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation and submission of your UK Visas and Immigration application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.
We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients. LEXVISA is just minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.
Preparation is the key to a successful application. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation.
Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.