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Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

What is ILR or Indefinite Leave to Remain?

Overseas migrants who have been granted Indefinite Leave to Remain, also called Settlement, are given unrestricted permission to reside in the UK.

What is needed to be eligible for Indefinite Leave to Remain?

Individuals with a British visa of the same type for at least five years can apply for ILR. However, in some circumstances, it is possible to apply after 3 years.

Other applicants can gain Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK after lawfully residing in the country for ten years.

ILR allows those from outside the UK to remain in the UK without any limitations and is the initial step required when seeking full British citizenship or Naturalisation.

Almost all other visa routes in the UK, such as Tier 1 Visas, Tier 2 Work Visas, and Spouse Visas, are eligible to apply for ILR, provided they meet the requirements.

What are the requirements to be eligible for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)?

You must fulfil specific requirements to be eligible for ILR:

  • You have held the same British visa for five years or more. Alternatively, you may qualify if you have legally been living in the UK for ten consecutive years.
  • Proof that you meet the B1 levels of English
  • You must pass the “Life in the UK” test
  • No criminal record and you cannot have breached immigration laws during your stay in the UK.
  • You cannot have spent more than 180 days outside of the UK within any year of living in the UK.
  • Satisfy any necessary income thresholds (if applicable)

What is Continuous Residence for ILR application?

To obtain Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK, you must satisfy the continuous residency requirement, which stipulates that you cannot have been away from the country for more than 180 days in any 12 months of your residence in the UK.

That being said, 180 days is a significant amount of time, equating to around half a year, but insufficient for some work visa holders required to travel abroad as part of their job. If you believe this could be a problem for you, we recommend you speak to one of our lawyers about it before making your Application.

Is it possible to lose the ILR status?

It is essential to bear in mind that if you reside outside of the UK for more than two years, your ILR status will be revoked.

What are the fees for ILR?

The fee for applying is £2,404 per person. Taking biometric information (fingerprints and a photo) is free and does not add additional time to the application process.

How long does it take to apply for ILR?

The timeframe for processing an application for Indefinite Leave to Remain is not definite but usually takes around six months.

If you opt for super-priority processing (24-hour processing), you will have to pay an additional £800. Alternatively, you may opt for priority processing (5 days); the additional cost is £500.

What is the process for an Indefinite Leave to Remain Application?

Indefinite Leave to Remain Applications is online. You must select the correct application form for ILR based on your immigration category. Double-checking that your Application's information is accurate and relevant to your situation

is essential.

You must pay a fee to apply, and no refunds are given if the Application is refused.

Frequent reasons for the refusal of permanent residence (ILR) applications

  • The Applicant fails to provide additional information or documents. If the Home Office requests additional documents or information, you must submit them within the timeframe.
  • Incorrect information or incomplete application form.
  • Insufficient documents provided with the Application for ILR

At Bogdan Law Office, we understand the stress and pressure that comes with filing for Indefinite Leave to Remain. That is why we provide professional assistance to all our clients.

Bogdan Law Office has expertise in aiding migrants to attain Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in the UK and can assist you in the application process for a positive outcome.

What documents are required to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain?

When applying for indefinite leave to remain (ILR) in the UK, you will typically need to provide various documents, such as proof of identity, nationality and evidence of residence in the UK. However, the exact documents required may vary depending on your visa type. Some documents you may need include:

  • ID documents such as a passport;
  • Evidence of your current UK visa;
  • Evidence of your absences from the UK;
  • Proof of income from your employer to demonstrate that you continue to meet the minimum income requirements for Skilled Workers, if applicable.
  • Evidence of your successful completion of the B1 English language test and the Life in the UK test.

What are the advantages of having an Indefinite Leave to Remain?

Holding the Indefinite Leave to Remain status grants you and your family the ability to improve your situation in the UK. People with ILR can live and work in the UK without visa limitations.

If you have been granted ILR, be mindful that spending two or more consecutive years outside the UK could cause you to lose your ILR status.

Our knowledgeable team is here to help you and your family with the application process for this route. Many of our clients have been happy to have our assistance in navigating the process.

From the beginning of the consultation to the moment you receive a decision on your indefinite leave to remain Application, we are dedicated to making the process as smooth and positive as possible. We proudly offer the best services for our clients and their families.

What are my options if my Application for Indefinite Leave to Remain is refused?

If the Home Office refuses your ILR application, this can be incredibly tough for you and your loved ones. It can feel like your life is on pause due to this harsh decision. Our experienced team can help you move quickly to assess your options for appealing the refusal.

The immigration category you choose will determine what options are available to you. Some remedies include:

  • Re-applying for ILR
  • Appeal the refusal decision
  • Applying for Administrative Review
  • Judicial Review against the refusal

Our team will provide tailored advice and help you identify the best solution for your situation.

What are the pathways to obtaining Indefinite Leave to Remain?

There are multiple ways to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain. You can send your ILR application based on the following:

  • Work Visas in the UK (SET(O))
  • Your Family and Private Life (SET(M))
  • Long residence in the UK (SET(LR))

Note that the application process may differ if you have residence status issued under the EU Settlement Scheme.

Can I obtain Indefinite Leave to Remain after five years?

To determine if you are eligible to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain after five years in the UK, you need to know if your visa allows it.

After living in the UK on one or various visas for five consecutive years, certain visa holders can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain.

Some routes may offer a shorter qualifying period, while others do not lead to Indefinite Leave to Remain.

Which application form should I use for Indefinite Leave to Remain?

The basis of your Application determines the form you must use. You can apply online.

You may use the form SET(O) if you have a work-related visa.

If you apply for ILR based on your family visa, you may use the form SET(M).

An ILR application based on Long Residence in the UK may be submitted using the form SET(LR).

It is vital to ensure that you comprehend all of the relevant questions on the application form and that all responses have been checked.

Once the form has been submitted online, it cannot be edited, so it is crucial to ensure that the information on the form is correct. If you need to make changes to your answer after submitting it, you should include additional evidence to support your revised answer.

Making a mistake on your ILR application can lead to delays, refusals, and repercussions for future applications you submit (or sponsor). It is essential to be mindful of details and to seek legal advice if you have any doubts.

Biometric enrolment with ILR application and the Biometric Residence Permit

If you are applying for ILR, you need to submit biometric data even if you already provided them for a past visa or already have a Biometric Residence Permit. Once your ILR application is accepted, you will be given a new Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) card.

You will usually be given a BRP that indicates your indefinite leave-to-remain status for ten years. You will need to renew your BRP once it has expired.

Once you receive your BRP card, double-check it for errors or incorrect expiry dates. If you spot anything that needs to be corrected, contact the Home Office to resolve the issue.

Applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain UK as a spouse

If you have been living in the UK with your partner for a consecutive 5-year period, you may apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain. You must wait until you have 28 days or less from your spouse's visa before submitting your Application for ILR. If you make your Application before 28 days, this may result in your Application being refused.

You must prove that you remain in a valid relationship with your sponsor and have suitable lodging for you and any dependents.

You must provide proof that you have enough financial resources to meet the requirements when you submit your Application.

You must also pass the life in the UK test and prove that you possess an adequate level of English proficiency (B1 level of the CEFR framework in Speaking and Listening).

It is necessary to demonstrate that you and your partner have been living together in the UK since your last immigration visa as a spouse was granted.

Can Indefinite Leave to Remain be taken away?

Your ILR status may be revoked if it is discovered that you obtained it through deception or if you are subject to deportation.

Criteria needed for ILR

The eligibility requirements for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK are based on your existing visa status and could be impacted by any visas you have had while living in the UK.

To obtain Indefinite Leave to Remain, you must fulfil your visa-type requirements.

You must generally meet the criteria of the "general grounds for refusal" to be eligible to apply for ILR. If you have recently received a criminal conviction, that may disqualify you from applying for ILR.

Can I get a British passport once I receive ILR?

If you have been granted indefinite leave to remain in the UK, you could be eligible to apply for Naturalisation as a British Citizen after 12 months. If you are married to a British Citizen, you may be able to apply immediately.

Before applying for Naturalisation, ensuring you meet the requirements is important. Once you have successfully been Naturalised as a British Citizen, you can apply for your first British passport.

What is the qualifying period for Indefinite Leave to Remain?

Some visa categories allow applicants to get Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in less than five years, while other routes require a minimum of five years qualifying period.

To be eligible for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) on the grounds of Long Residence, an applicant must have had ten years of lawful residence in the UK. The Applicant must have stayed in the UK for ten consecutive years, including lawful permission to be in the country.

According to the applicable procedure, visa holders cannot apply for ILR more than 28 days before they have finished the time period necessary for eligibility.

The English language test for ILR

Individuals aged 18-65 must demonstrate that their English proficiency is at least B1 level of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) in speaking and listening to be eligible for Indefinite Leave to Remain.

To prove that they meet the requirement, applicants from majority of English-speaking countries can provide evidence of their nationality.

Other applicants must submit proof that they have either a Home Office-approved English test score or a degree that was taught in English. Degrees obtained outside the UK must be accompanied by a UK ENIC certificate that indicates the educational level and, when applicable, the English language level at which the degree was taught.

Life in the UK Test for ILR

To be eligible for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK, applicants aged 18-65 must pass the life in the UK test. This exam is based on British customs and traditions and consists of 24 questions to be answered within 45 minutes. It must be taken at one of the official government testing centres in the country.

It is highly recommended that applicants study and plan for the test, and they must book at least three days in advance. A valid form of identification will be required to take the test, which costs £50. If unsuccessful, the test must be retaken after a waiting period of 7 days. The passing mark for life in the UK test is 75%. Life in the UK test centres must provide appropriate accommodations for disabled candidates.

The life in the UK test is not mandatory for all applicants; people with long-term physical or mental disabilities who cannot take the life in the UK test, backed up by medical evidence, are not required to do so.

Rather than receiving a pass certificate for the test, applicants are given a Unique Test Reference number.

It is advisable to consult with an Immigration Lawyer to find out if you meet the requirements for an ILR application and what documents you need to submit.

Our experienced immigration lawyers will consult with you to assess your situation and offer advice on the best course of action. We will also provide comprehensive instructions to ensure your Application is completed and submitted to the Home Office correctly.

If you are applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain, our immigration lawyers can assist you in every aspect of the process. We will evaluate your eligibility and provide you with a well-crafted application form. Additionally, we will thoroughly review your documents to make sure they are sufficient to support your Application. Furthermore, we will write a Letter of Representation to support your Application.

Distance is not a problem, we work with you over the phone, Worldwide
  • Step 1 - Get in touch, speak to our expert for a free assessment of your immigration case
  • Step 2 - Book a consultation and get a detailed advice letter out about your options
  • Step 3 - Instruct us to take your case

We are regulated by the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC) at the highest level - Advocacy and Representation (Level 3)

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