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The Journey of British Naturalization

Embracing a New Identity: The Journey of British Naturalization

Table of Contents

An American passport opens up endless opportunities. Living, working, and studying in Britain becomes possible, and you will have access to all the benefits available only to British-born citizens. While becoming British may take longer than you thought, it’s worth the journey if being able to say “I’m British” has long been your goal.

Naturalizing yourself into British citizenship can be done either independently, or you may hire a UK immigration lawyer to represent your interests and complete this process for you.

Who Can Apply for British Naturalization?

In order to be eligible for British naturalization through naturalization, one must have lived in the UK for five years while also holding one of the following statuses for at least 12 months:

  • Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)
  • “Settled status,” which is equivalent to ILR for EU Settlement Scheme users.
  • Indefinite leave to enter the UK.

Additionally, to receive indefinite leave, you must meet language requirements, demonstrate familiarity with British life and history, and demonstrate that you intend on remaining here permanently. Although the application process can take time and be time-consuming, its rejection rate is low; an estimate puts it as low as 4.3%.

Steps in a British Naturalization Application

When beginning the British naturalisation application process, here are the steps you will need to know about: Generally, applications take around six months from the application submission date until their decision has been issued; if your application is incomplete or UKVI requests additional information from you, this could extend this timeline further. Additionally, make sure you meet residency requirements.

Before making your application and paying the fee, you must meet residency requirements. In particular, for the past five years, you must have resided in the UK; during the past twelve months, one of these criteria must also have been fulfilled: * Indefinite leave to remain (ILR)

  • You have settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme.
  • If you are married to a British national, no need exists for you to wait 12 months prior to applying.

Prepare your documents.

The application process for British naturalization can be lengthy and complex. To be eligible, multiple tests must be passed, as well as various documents prepared that prove your eligibility.
Your application requires proof that you have resided in the UK for at least five years and should include details regarding any times during that time frame that you left and returned to Britain.
If you are struggling with this part of the application, we advise seeking professional UK immigration lawyers‘ assistance. By instructing an immigration solicitor on your behalf, they may help reduce the chances of your application being rejected due to incomplete or incorrect data.

Pass the language test.

In order to be considered for British naturalization, as part of your application, you will be required to demonstrate your language knowledge—English, Welsh, or Scottish Gaelic. Exceptions exist if you hold a degree taught or researched in English; also, being from countries where English is the main spoken language, being over 65, or having long-term mental or physical conditions will exempt you from this requirement.

Otherwise, a qualification in English at either B1, B2, C1, or C2 level will be necessary. You should visit an authorized test center for certification purposes.

Pass the Life in the UK Test

In order to become a British citizen through naturalisation, the second test you will need to pass is the Life in the UK Test, consisting of 24 questions covering traditional British traditions and customs over 45 minutes and costing PS50 to book.

Once you have collected all the documents and conducted all relevant tests to satisfy the requirements, it’s time to submit your application. Processing times typically take 6 months; however, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been delays.

What happens if my application is accepted?

Once your application for naturalization has been accepted, this means you have achieved your goal of becoming a British citizen through naturalization. As soon as this occurs, you will become eligible to obtain a British passport, as well as all the benefits and protections afforded to British citizens.

The final step towards citizenship includes attending a citizenship ceremony. At this event, you must swear an oath of allegiance and pledge allegiance to the United Kingdom; this pledge ensures you comply with its rights, freedoms, and laws.

This ceremony is free, and you may bring two guests with you. However, please be aware that it must be completed within three months of receiving an invitation from the Home Office and that only those aged 18 and older require citizenship ceremonies.

What happens if my application is rejected?

Although the refusal rate for British citizenship by naturalization is very low, applications may still be rejected due to mistakes or omissions that arise during the application process.

If there was an error or you feel as if information has been omitted, you can ask for reconsideration; this does not constitute an appeal; simply request to reconsider and explain how your circumstances have altered accordingly. Alternatively, submit a new application if circumstances have altered and your new one meets all compliance standards.

How Can We Assist?

Our experts can walk you through each step to reduce the chances of your British naturalization application being rejected, helping you to save the PS1,330 fee twice! For additional assistance, please check out the Best Immigration Lawyers in London UK.

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