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Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

You may be eligible to apply for Settlement or ILR once you have lived in the UK for a specific period as required by the Immigration Rules.

What is indefinite leave to remain (ILR)?

Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) is a form of permanent residency that allows foreign nationals to live and work in the UK without any time restrictions or the need for a visa. ILR is also commonly referred to as “settlement” or “permanent residency”.After holding ILR for a specified period, individuals may become eligible to apply for British citizenship if they meet certain requirements.

What are the requirements for indefinite leave to remain?

Here are some common eligibility criteria that generally apply to most ILR applications.

Length of Residence
You must have lived in the UK for a specified period. The length of residence requirement can vary based on your immigration category. Common periods include five years, ten years, or less for specific visa routes.


Immigration Status
You must have held a valid and lawful immigration status throughout your residence in the UK. This means that you should not have overstayed your visa or violated immigration rules.


Absences from the UK
There are restrictions on the amount of time you can spend outside the UK during your qualifying period. Excessive absences, particularly during the last year of your qualifying period, may affect your eligibility for ILR.


Criminal Record
Applicants are typically required to demonstrate good character, which includes having no serious criminal convictions or breaches of immigration law.


English Language and Life in the UK Test
Depending on your visa category, age, and nationality, you may be required to pass an English language test and a “Life in the UK” test to demonstrate your knowledge of British culture, history, and language.


Financial Requirements
Some ILR applicants, such as those on family visas, may need to meet specific financial criteria, including minimum income or financial savings.


Relationships and Dependents
For certain categories, such as spouse or partner visas, you may need to prove that your relationship is genuine and subsisting, and any dependents should also meet the relevant criteria.


Private Life and Compassionate Circumstances
Some individuals may apply for ILR based on their private life in the UK or compassionate circumstances. These applications are considered on a case-by-case basis and may have specific requirements.

Indefinite leave to remain document checklist

You’ll need to provide:

  • Current valid passport
  • Biometric residence permit (BRP)
  • Evidence that you have been living in the UK continuously for the qualifying period
  • Evidence of absence from the UK
  • Evidence to prove your knowledge of English
  • Life in the UK test certificate

ILR application processing time

ILR applications usually take between 3 to 6 months if applied using the standard service. However, it may take longer if your case is complex. You may be able to choose “super priority service” to get a faster decision within 24 hours (usually by the end of the next working day). You’ll need to pay £800 in addition to the ILR application fee.

Rose Law Solicitors will:

  • Provide detailed immigration advice.
  • Assess your circumstances and eligibility for ILR application.
  • Explain the entire ILR application process.
  • Give you a completed checklist of documents according to the type of your ILR application and your circumstances.
  • Check all the supporting documents to ensure that they are sufficient and in the correct format.
  • Fill out the complete ILR application form and prepare a detailed representation and cover letter for the Home Office UKVI about the Immigration Rules.
  • Book an appointment for you to enrol your biometrics.
  • Upload all the supporting documents.
  • Liaise with the Home Office UKVI throughout the process until we receive the decision.
  • Keep you updated with every stage of your ILR application.

What are the requirements to apply for ILR as a Spouse (5-year route)?

  • As a spouse of a British citizen or settled person, you may be eligible to apply for ILR under the 5-year route if you meet the following requirements:

    • You have been living in the UK for at least 5 years under the Spouse visa or Partner visa;
    • You have not stayed outside the UK for more than 180 days in any 12 months during the 5-year period;
    • You meet the English language requirement by passing an approved English language test at a B1 level, or by having a degree that was taught or researched in English;
    • You have passed the Life in the UK test;
    • You meet the financial requirement, which means that you and your partner have a combined income of at least £18,600 per year, or you have enough savings to support yourselves without claiming public funds;
    • You do not have a criminal record or any other reason why you should not be allowed to stay in the UK.
    • You must meet all other eligibility requirements depending on your circumstances.


How to apply for indefinite leave to remain as a spouse?

1. Check your eligibility

To apply for ILR as a spouse, you must have lived in the UK for a certain period of time and meet other requirements. You must have lived in the UK for at least 5 years on a spouse visa. You must also meet other eligibility criteria such as passing the Life in the UK test and meeting the English language requirement.

2. Gather your documents

You will need to provide certain documents with your application, such as your passport, marriage certificate, evidence of your relationship with your spouse, and evidence of your financial situation.

3. Fill out the application form

You must apply online using the SET (M) application form. The application form will ask for your personal details, information about your spouse, your immigration history, and your reasons for applying for ILR.

4. Pay the fee

You will need to pay a fee to apply for ILR as a spouse.

5. Submit your application

Once you have completed the application form and gathered all the required documents, you can submit your application.

6. Attend a biometric appointment

After you submit your application, you will need to attend a biometric appointment to have your fingerprints and photograph taken.

7. Wait for a decision

ILR application can take several months. You will receive a decision on your ILR application in writing. If your application is approved, you will receive your new status as a permanent resident of the UK.The application process for ILR can be complex, and it is recommended that you seek professional legal advice if you are unsure about any aspect of the process.

How long does it take to process an ILR application?

You will usually get a decision from Home Office (UKVI) within 6 months if you apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) using the standard service. It may take longer depending on the complexity of the matter.

Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) application fee

Currently, Home Office (UKVI) fee for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) application is £2,404 per applicant, if you apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) using the standard service.

Please note the fee will change from the 4th October 2023 up by 20% from £2,404 to £2,885.

Please note VAT is a government tax that we are required to charge, and will usually be added at 20% to the disbursements except where the disbursements are outside the scope of VAT.

Our fees from:

Our fees for ILR from £1200.

Kindly note that VAT is not applicable as we are not a vat registered company.

Please note VAT is a government tax that we are required to charge, and will usually be added at 20% to the disbursements except where the disbursements are outside the scope of VAT.

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