If you have been residing in the UK legally for a period of 10 years you may be eligible to apply for indefinite leave to remain (ILR) in the UK, under Paragraph 276 of the Immigration rules. The indefinite leave to remain application is popular for many non-European nationals as it allows Applicants to remain in the UK without any time restrictions and to apply to Naturalise as a British Citizen. If you would like an assessment to see whether you are eligible to apply for indefinite leave to remain, you can contact us for a free case assessment.
Eligibility for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK
Indefinite Leave to Remain is granted to Applicants who can demonstrate that they have resided in the UK legally for a continuous period of 10 years. However, in addition to the continuous residence requirement Applicants are required to show that they have settled and integrated into the UK way of life and are required to pass a life in the UK test. The Immigration rules are complex and it is advised that all Applicants seek legal advice before submitting an Indefinite Leave to Remain application as a Home Office refusal would have a detrimental impact on future applications and more importantly future Naturalisation applications. There are other avenues open to Applicants to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain.
The eligibility requirements for Indefinite Leave to Remain can be found in Paragraph 276 of the Immigration rules. At the time of the application, Applicants must satisfy the following:
- Applicants must have been resident in the UK legally for 10 years (holidays are permitted but the absences must not exceed 540 days);
- Applicants must have been residing in the UK in accordance with their visa restrictions, if Applicants are in breach any of their visa restrictions this will have to be mitigated in your application with a valid explanation; and
- Applicants are required to pass the Life in the UK test and must demonstrate they have sufficient knowledge of the English language.
However, Applicants who do not meet the eligibility requirements for an Indefinite Leave to Remain application can apply to extend their visa and can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain at a later stage.
Apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain with excessive Absences and Criminal Convictions
The 10-year qualifying period starts from the date you arrive in the UK or the date you were given permission to stay in the UK. Applicants must be cautious when travelling abroad because to submit a successful indefinite leave to remain application they cannot have more than a total of 540 days outside the UK for the continuous period. In addition to this Applicants cannot be outside the UK for more than 180 days at any one time.
If an Applicant has spent more than 540 days outside the UK or more than 180 days at any one time you may not be considered to have continuous residence as there may be a break in residency in the UK. Whilst you may not meet the residence requirement, it still may be possible to submit a successful Indefinite Leave to Remain application, if there are compelling and exceptional circumstances surrounding your residency, we can assist by submitting strong legal representations explaining the excessive absences.
Your continuous residence may also be broken if you have spent time in a prison or young offenders institution. If you have a criminal conviction you may not be eligible to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain as you may not meet the suitability requirements. If you have any doubts in relation to whether you meet the requirements for indefinite leave to remain, you can contact us for a free case assessment.
Using Legal Representation for a successful Indefinite Leave to Remain 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 successful Indefinite Leave to Remain 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 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 application meets the Immigration Rules.
Successful Indefinite Leave to Remain Applications with a view to Naturalisation
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 visa and immigration application before your matter even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation of your immigration and visa 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. We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.
Preparation is the key to successful immigration applications. 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.