Does Indefinite Leave to Remain end?

 

“Does indefinite leave to remain end?” sounds a bit of a daft question. After all most of us think that indefinite means without end. However, the dictionary definition of indefinite is “not exact or not clear; without clear limits” and the synonyms of indefinite are “vague, uncertain and unclear”. That is not exactly comforting if you are a non-EEA national who wants to secure permanent residence in the UK. 

 
Top London immigration solicitors say that Home Office officials probably chose the term “indefinite leave to remain” with care. Whilst non-EEA migrants aspire to securing indefinite leave to remain in the UK to enable them to go about their daily lives free from many aspects of Immigration control, indefinite leave to remain does not guarantee permanent residence in the UK. That is because indefinite leave to remain can end.
 
It is best to know exactly what indefinite leave to remain means and the limits of the leave before making an application for indefinite leave to remain. That way, with the best legal advice an informed choice can be made about Immigration options. Furthermore, if a non-EEA citizen knows the limitations of indefinite leave to remain they can weigh up the benefits of applying to naturalise as a British citizen once they meet the British Citizenship eligibility criteria.
 

How can OTS Solicitors help? 

 
For advice on applying for indefinite leave to remain or if you want to challenge a Home Office decision to curtail your indefinite leave to remain  then call the Legal 500 recommended Immigration  team at OTS Solicitors on 0203 959 9123 to arrange an appointment to speak to one of our experienced London immigration solicitors.
 

What is indefinite leave to remain

  
If indefinite leave to remain does not mean permanent residence in the UK then what does it mean.
 
Top London immigration solicitors say that UK indefinite leave to remain is an Immigration status that can be applied for by citizens of non-EEA countries who want to live in the UK and be able to work or study with less Immigration restrictions and time limits than under a study or work visa. EEA nationals can apply for Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme.  
 
The best way to describe indefinite leave to remain status is that it is better and more secure than most visa options available to non-EEA citizens but not as secure as  naturalisation as a British citizen.
 

The difference between indefinite leave to remain and British Citizenship

 
Many migrants assume that indefinite leave to remain is the same as British Citizenship but it is not. 
 
 

• Give permanent Immigration status – it only indefinite status and although that means the Immigration status is not time limited, it does not necessarily provide complete security;

• Allow a migrant to leave the UK for more than two years without losing their indefinite leave to remain status;

• Allow a migrant to obtain a British passport;

• Enable a migrant to vote in British elections.  

 
However, Top London immigration solicitors say that indefinite leave to remain status does enable a non-EEA citizen to:
 

• Remain in the UK without having to make repeat visa applications to UK Visas and Immigration with all the hassle, paperwork and fees that repeat visa applications involve; 

• Apply for naturalisation as a British citizen after they have held indefinite leave to remain status for at least one year and meet the other British Citizenship criteria. If a non-EEA citizen is married (or in a civil partnership) to a British citizen or to a person with Settled Status, the one-year rule requirement for holding indefinite leave to remain does not apply.

 

The ending of indefinite leave to remain 

 
Although Top London immigration solicitors say that if a non-EEA migrant is granted indefinite leave to remain by the Home Office the status is for an “indefinite period” the indefinite leave to remain can nonetheless be brought to an end if:
 

• There is more than two years absence from the UK; 

• If a criminal offence is committed that could lead to deportation from the UK;

• For reasons of UK national security;

• The Home Office is satisfied that the indefinite leave to remain status was secured either by deception or by false documentation.

 

Loss of indefinite leave to remain through two years absence from the UK

 
The most common basis for the loss of indefinite leave to remain is an absence from the UK of two years or longer. In order to remain eligible for indefinite leave to remain in the UK, a migrant has to be ordinarily resident in the UK. The UK Visas and Immigration classes anyone who has not lived in the UK for two or more years as not “ordinarily resident” in the UK.
 
If a non-EEA migrant wants to leave the UK for two or more years but wants to retain the right to live and work in the UK then the best option may be to apply for British Citizenship. A British Citizenship can leave the UK and will retain their right to return and their status as a British Citizenship however long they are absent from the UK for. It is sensible to take legal advice on applying for naturalisation as a British citizen to ensure that this is the best route to follow. For example, a migrant may not want to lose their nationality of birth by acquiring British Citizenship or may not be aware of the potential option of dual nationality. 
 

How can OTS Solicitors help?

 

OTS Solicitors are Legal 500 recommended Immigration law specialists. OTS Solicitors have Law Society accredited solicitors status as trusted specialists in Immigration law.
 
For advice on applying for indefinite leave to remain or for help with the loss of indefinite leave to remain or to apply for British citizenship please call us on 0203 959 9123 to arrange an appointment to speak to one of our experienced London immigration solicitors who will be happy to help.
 

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