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Indefinite Leave to Remain Applications

Applicants face strict requirements to qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in the UK. Our immigration solicitors specialise in assisting clients through the application process for ILR.

Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), sometimes known as ‘settlement’ or ‘permanent settlement’, is when permission is granted by the Home Office to live and work in the UK permanently without any immigration restrictions.

It is a mandatory requirement for non-EEA nationals looking to apply for British citizenship.
If you have legally resided in the UK for a certain amount of time, you may be able to apply to settle in the UK. For a successful application, you must meet certain regulations set out by the Home Office. Our immigration solicitors are here to advise you throughout the whole process and can assist you wherever you are based.
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What are the Requirements?

ILR is not automatically granted. Strict eligibility criteria must be met and evidenced as part of the Home Office application, which includes completing the appropriate forms and submitting supporting documentation.


Generally, you must have spent 5 continuous years in the UK with lawful status and without excessive absences. There are, however, accelerated routes to indefinite leave for Tier 1 Investor and Tier 1 Entrepreneur applicants.

People who have spent 10 years in the UK with continuous visa permission may also be able to apply for ILR under the Long Residence Rules even if they hold a visa in a category that would not normally qualify for settlement.

There are many different routes to indefinite leave to remain and each visa category has its own specific requirements with some operating on a points-based system. In general, to qualify for permanent residence you must have:

  • Completed the minimum qualifying period of residency for your visa type
  • Passed the Life in the UK Test
  • Passing English test and Life in the UK test
  • You have a long-term plan to remain and settle in the UK.
  • You have not breached any immigration rules and meet the suitability requirements.
Immigration law is constantly changing and therefore, we strongly recommend you contact us today for expert legal advice about your circumstances.

Our expert team of ILR solicitors are specialists in dealing with all types of Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) applications and provide high-quality legal advice.

Is ILR the same as citizenship?

There are several differences between indefinite leave to remain and British citizenship and the eligibility requirements and application process differ significantly.

ILR status can be lost, where the individual has been absent from the UK for more than 2 years, revoked for reasons of national security or if you commit a criminal offence that could lead to deportation.

With British citizenship, you can:

Live and work in the UK without immigration restrictions
Apply for a British passport
Achieve the right to vote
Be a permanent citizen

What compulsory tests are needed when applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain?

If you are aged between 18 and 65 and want to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain or British citizenship, you will need to pass both the ‘Life in the UK’ test and also have an English language qualification. (Unless you are exempt)


The ‘Life in the UK’ test is an exam to prove your knowledge of British traditions and customs and it is a requirement for you to score 75% or above.
You can take this test as many times as you need to and must pay a £50 fee every time you take it. If you have any further questions about this, our immigration solicitors will be more than happy to advise you.
You must also prove that you meet the English language test requirements. To do this you must attend an approved language test centre. A list of approved centres is available on Gov.uk.
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How we can help:

  • Reviewing your immigration history and advising on the best way forward.
  • Advising you about the strength and weaknesses of your settlement application.
  • Advising you about the required documentary evidence and consider the content in support of your settlement application.
  • Carefully complete the necessary application on your behalf.
  • Making relevant representations to the Home Office explaining your circumstances and persuading them as to why your settlement visa should be granted.
  • Submitting your settlement application.
  • Protecting your legal interests whilst your settlement application is pending and keeping you informed of any progress.
  • Carrying out any following up work that is required to ensure that a decision is reached.
  • Advising you on the implications of the Home Office decision.How we can help:
  • Reviewing your immigration history and advising on the best way forward.
  • Advising you about the strength and weaknesses of your settlement application.
  • Advising you about the required documentary evidence and consider the content in support of your settlement application.
  • Carefully complete the necessary application on your behalf.
  • Making relevant representations to the Home Office explaining your circumstances and persuading them as to why your settlement visa should be granted.
  • Submitting your settlement application.
  • Protecting your legal interests whilst your settlement application is pending and keeping you informed of any progress.
  • Carrying out any following up work that is required to ensure that a decision is reached.
  • Advising you on the implications of the Home Office decision.

There's no better time than now

People rely on us, and we pride ourselves on our client-centered advocacy and representation.

If you have been refused ILR, you may have a right of appeal. We can advise you on whether a right of appeal exists, and if so, represent you in any Tribunal.

Our Expertise

Our specialist immigration solicitors will be by your side throughout all stages of your ILR application. They will discuss your circumstances and present you with options on how to proceed.

Legal advice should always be sought before an application is submitted, the case must be argued well and in detail to show evidence that you meet the requirements.

Why Choose Us?

Our solicitors have many years of experience in dealing with ILR and visa matters. They will expertly guide you in all aspects of your immigration requirements and are ideally positioned to explain any complexities and can represent your position robustly in order to achieve your desired outcome.

We have helped many individuals across the country through the sensitive and complex process of ILR applications.

How to Get in Contact

Please call us on 01234 350 244 or email us at info@dvsolicitors.com for further information and advice about our family visa application services. We will happily provide you with a free initial discussion about your individual circumstances..
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