Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

Stabilising Your Future

You may be eligible for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) if you have lived in the UK for 10 years lawfully and intend to stay in the UK. By applying for ILR, you will:
  • Gain the right to settle in the UK indefinitely
  • Be able to travel to and from the UK without restrictions
  • Not be required to show a work permit when taking up employment
ILR requires you to show you have been in the UK for a sustained period of time. This length of time depends upon your immigration status which is determined by factors such as the visa you hold and the ability to support yourself, etc.
It is important to note that such cases vary from client to client, so please contact our office in the first instance so that our legal experts can determine what options are specifically available to your case based on your circumstances.

What are the UK Indefinite Leave to Remain requirements and eligibility?

The specific requirements differ depending on the particular circumstances of the applicant, including the type of visa they hold. The most basic requirement for ILR is to have been lawfully living in the UK for a certain period of time. However, there are other requirements which must be fulfilled too. The general requirements to become eligible to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain are based on:
  • Lawful living in the UK for a certain period of time
  • No breach of immigration laws during your stay in the UK and no criminal record
  • A period of time spent outside the UK which doesn’t exceed 180 days in a 12-month period during the qualifying period
  • A pass in the Life in the UK test, which is a test based on British culture, history and traditions
  • Ability to prove that you meet the B1 level of English as set out by the Common European Framework of Languages.
  • ILR exemptions
Certain individuals will not need to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain to be granted with settled UK status, including:
  • Those eligible for British citizenship by descent (or other form of automatic citizenship)
  • Child dependants of a British citizen or person with settled status
  • An adult dependant who is reliant on the long-term care of their family member who is a British citizen or person with settled status
  • Refugees resettled in the UK through the Gateway Protection Programme

If you have been lawfully living in the UK under a form of settlement visa UK you will be able to apply for ILR once you have passed the minimum time threshold for that particular visa. Contact our office for more information.

As part of the Indefinite Leave to Remain application, you must be able to prove that you meet the English language requirement of B1 in speaking and listening as specified by the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages.

Most applicants will need to hold a certificate from an approved test provider to include in their Indefinite Leave to Remain application or, alternatively, be able to show the results online. However, some people will not need to fulfil this requirement. For example, citizens of the Commonwealth countries or majority English-speaking countries will usually be exempt.

Also, the following applicants will be exempt from the English language requirement:

  • Those aged 65 or over
  • Holders of a degree or higher qualification at an accredited educational establishment which was taught in English
  • Those under humanitarian protection
  • Victims of domestic abuse
  • A partner or spouse of a person who has died who was a British citizen or person with settled status

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