At the starting point, we should bear in mind that naturalisation is not an entitlement. The British Nationality Act of 1981 governs the law relating to the naturalisation. If you meet the fundamental conditions, only then the Home Secretary may use their discretion to grant you naturalisation. They may also take into account how far you fail to meet some standards.
The application for naturalisation as a British citizen is known as Form AN. In order to complete the application, you will have to provide information including your biographical details, documentation of your residency, and details about your employment. You must present proof of your current immigration status if you are a citizen of the EEA, Switzerland, or if you are a UK citizen’s child, spouse, or civil partner.
Before moving forward with your application, please be aware that some countries’ citizenship regulations do not allow them to become citizens of another nation i.e. in such case, the applicant needs to renounce his/her citizenship once the application is successful. Therefore, it is advised that before making any application for naturalisation, please seek the assistance of an immigration solicitor or advisor.
Naturalization is not a right; citizenship may only be granted if you can show that you meet specific legal conditions and the Home Secretary deems it appropriate to grant the application. Depending on whether you are applying on the basis of a marriage or civil partnership with a British citizen, there are different prerequisites for naturalisation as a British citizen.
Before applying, you must comply with the following legal requirements:
Depending on the type of citizenship application you are making, a different application form is required. Most applications for British citizenship can be made online. You should first determine the type of citizenship application you would be making before filling out the online form. If the type of citizenship application you would be making can be made online, you would be able to make the payment of the application fee online and then you would be directed to a new site to upload supporting documents and book a biometric appointment.
Some application forms are still accessible for paper completion and postal submission. In such cases, you will need complete a payment slip in addition to the application form to make the payment. For naturalisation, the Form AN is the appropriate forum.
Here’s a step-by-step breakdown of the sections of the Form AN:
IdentifIcation details and personal information
This section of Form AN will require the applicant to provide personal records and identification proofs, this includes:
Most unsuccessful applications come from those who failed to meet the residency criteria to be present in the UK for the qualifying period but submitted an application nonetheless.
This part of the Form AN will require the applicant to provide:
This section of the UK citizenship application form will require the applicant to provide information on criminal offences committed by them (if any), or if he/she is currently involved in any criminal proceedings or investigations.
Things that may cause immigration officials to suspect you are untrustworthy include (but are not limited to):
This section is for the people who are working for the Crown or have partners who are working for the same.
This space is for any additional information that includes the referees. A professional of any nationality, such as a doctor or a minister of religion, must be one of the referees. Although a lawyer may act as a referee, they cannot act as a referee if he or she is representing the applicant in respect of his or her application. The second referee must be a British national, as well as older than 25. The referees must not be related to the applicant or to the other referee and must not have any imprisonable criminal conviction in the last 10 years.
The applicant will have to enrol his/her biometric details.
There will be a declaration section at the end of the form.
Here are the following documents that you may be required to upload in support of your application:
The application process can take up to 6 months, however, most applications are decided considerably sooner. Once accepted, you will get your approval letter, followed by a citizenship invitation letter. You must schedule a citizenship ceremony as soon as possible at your local council. You will only become a British citizen after attending your naturalisation ceremony and receiving your certificate of naturalisation. Once the naturalisation procedure is complete, you can apply for your first British passport.
At A Y & J Solicitors, our expert immigration lawyers will be happy to assist you with the British Citizenship application. We can help you compile all the necessary paperwork and guide you through the process.