UK Immigration & Nationality Lawyers

Applications for naturalisation are easy. What can possibly go wrong?

British citizenship

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Applications for naturalisation are easy. What can possibly go wrong?

I was recently helping a client with an application for permanent residence. When the application was approved, the client qualified to apply for British citizenship, and I asked if we could help with this next application. To my dismay, he told me that citizenship is easy – why would he need legal help? Or do I think it is complicated? I did not think it was complicated and yet, even uncomplicated matters can go awry. I am always a bit lost for an answer when clients ask me if they can do things without me. It is like asking a

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Capparrelli (EEA Nationals – British Nationality) – Is British citizenship precarious?

British citizenship has never been a question of black and white, yes or no, British or not British. There have always been subtleties and nuances and, if we think of Citizens of UK Colonies (CUKCs) or British Overseas Citizens, one may even suspect some form of duplicity about the concept. A recent decision of the Upper Tribunal in the case of Capparrelli (EEA nationals – British citizenship) [2017] UKUT 00162 has created a microearthquake which has sent to shambles any certainty for non-indigenous Brits, especially for those who were born in the UK to EEA national parents. Background facts of

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British citizenship for EU national children – entitlement or a matter of discretion?

Not every child born in the UK is a British citizen by birth. But every child can be registered at the discretion of the Secretary of State. The Home Office should not be confused as to the basis for exercise of discretion. It is not “exceptionality” that has to be addressed, but the child’s best interests and the child’s most probable place of residence in the foreseeable future.

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Brexit from immigration lawyer’s perspective

Brexit will affect us all, independently of background, migrants or not, Europeans or Africans. From immigration lawyer's perspective my strong recommendation for EU nationals who have worked in the UK for more than five years is now to apply for a document certifying permanent right of residence. It was not, and still is not, mandatory to have this document. However, it became of much value in November 2015 when it was announced that European citizens were no longer entitled to apply for British citizenship before having held this document for one year.

Q&A

I was born in London on March 1981. My parents are both Japanese. They worked in London but left the UK 3 years after my birth and never came back again. I am resident in Japan. Am I entitled to British citizenship?

As you were born in the UK prior to 1st January 1983, you are British citizen at birth as long as your parents were not in the UK as diplomats. They do not need to have had Indefinite Leave to Remain. You do not need to naturalise or register as British. And you can apply for a British passport.

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Applications for naturalisation

Persons over 18 who are not British citizens can naturalise as British citizens once they have a settled status. Naturalisation requirements are different for spouses of British citizens and other prospective applicants with a settled status. Spouses of British citizens have to meet the following requirements: be settled (or have indefinite leave to remain) on the day of the application; have been resident in the UK lawfully for at least three years; have not left the UK for more than 270 days in the last three years, and 90 days in the last 12 months prior to the application. Where

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British citizenship

For those who are not British by birth, there are two ways of acquiring British citizenship: through naturalisation or registration. A child born in the UK to a British parent or a person settled in the UK is a British citizen by birth.  It is possible to obtain confirmation of British citizenship for a child where there is a risk that his nationality may be disputed. Children born before 1 July 2006 do not automatically inherit their British nationality from their father if the father is not married to their mother. They have to be registered at the discretion of the Secretary of

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To be or not to be British? EEA migrants may wonder

Not long ago this question would simply not arise. Now it has become an integral part of legal advice in any consultation on naturalisation. Strange as it may seem, British citizenship may entail serious disadvantages for UK residents. These disadvantages mainly affect the right to unity of the family, and the right of residence in the UK of non-European family members, including spouse and dependent parents. For EEA nationals, especially those who have family ties with non-European nationals, the disadvantages may outweigh the benefits of being British. British immigration rules are rigid and burdensome for applicants for UK spouse visa.

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How criminal record affects applications for indefinite leave to remain and nationality

Applicants for indefinite leave to remain in the UK may fall foul of the mandatory grounds for refusal on the basis of criminality, while applicants for British citizenship have to meet the new statutory requirement of good character. Immigration Solicitors from a London based firm Kadmos Consultants explain the effect of criminal convictions in the context of immigration.

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