What supporting documents do I need for naturalisation application?
When it comes to a British citizenship application, British nationality solicitors will tell you that sending the correct supporting documents with your naturalisation application is just as important as the way in which your British naturalisation application is completed. However compelling your application, you won't get British Citizenship unless you submit the right supporting documents needed for naturalisation to the Home Office with your British nationality application form.
British Citizenship solicitors
London based OTS Solicitors specialise in British nationality applications. If you are worried about whether you have the right supporting documents for your British naturalisation application, need advice on your British Citizenship application or want to know how to appeal the refusal of your British naturalisation application then the immigration solicitors in the British Citizenship team at OTS Solicitors can help you.
To speak to a British Citizenship solicitor about anything from the supporting documents for a naturalisation application, through to UK citizen proof of residence, call 0203 959 9123 or complete the online enquiry form.
What documents do I need to apply for British Citizenship?
There is a saying that 'you get what you put in' and that is true when it comes to making a UK citizenship application. That is because before you can submit your British Citizenship application to the Home Office you need to do some preparation work and understand the supporting documents needed for naturalisation first.
When you apply for British naturalisation, you have to submit various supporting documents including evidence that you are either exempt from the English language test and Life in the UK test or evidence of passing the English language test and Life in the UK test. For anyone who needs to take and pass these two tests as a requirement for British naturalisation, preparation is the best way to ensure that you succeed.
Some applicants for British Citizenship worry that they won't pass the English language test or Life in the UK test, but British nationality solicitors advise that:
- You can take the Life in the UK test at any time. Your pass certificate will not expire. If you are concerned about failing the Life in the UK test you can sit the test well in advance of when you can apply for British naturalisation so you have plenty of time to achieve a pass;
- If you have already taken the tests as part of your application for Indefinite Leave to Remainyou will not need to re-sit the tests but you will need to produce your test certificates;
- You may not need to pass the English language test if you have certain qualifications or come from one of the countries acknowledged by the Home Office as English speaking;
- You may not need to pass either the Life in the UK test or the English language test if you fall within one of the exceptions, for example, if you are age under eighteen or over sixty five or you are medically exempt.
The majority of British naturalisation applicants will need to sit one or both tests, so it is best to give yourself plenty of time to prepare for the tests as most British Citizenship applicants say that with a bit of preparation the two tests are not as difficult or demanding as they expected.
Applying for British Citizenship and Biometric enrolment
As part of your application for British Citizenship you will need to enrol your biometric details to help the Home Office verify your identity.
When it comes to biometric details, it is a requirement for British citizenship that every applicant for British nationality has to provide information. There is no upper age limit. If a child under the age of eighteen is registering for British nationality, then special rules apply on enrolling biometric details, namely:
- Children under the age of six do not need to provide fingerprints but they must have a digital photograph taken of their face; and
- Children under the age of sixteen must be accompanied by a parent or legal guardian to the biometric enrolment appointment.
If you don’t enrol your biometric information by attending the biometric appointment then your application for British nationality will be rejected as the biometric information is essential.
What documents do I need to apply for British Citizenship?
Sending the right documents with your British naturalisation application is essential because if you don’t then your application will either be returned unprocessed by the Home Office or rejected. A British nationality solicitor will make sure that your application is supported by the best information and documents that you have available or that can be produced.
The Home Office British nationality application guidance states that you need to provide various documents for a citizenship application. Common British citizenship documents include:
- Your identity;
- Knowledge of English language and Life in UK test or evidence that you are exempt;
- Lawful residence (if your British Citizenship application is based on a number of years lawful residence in the UK);
- Evidence of nationality if you are an EEAcitizen and applying for British Citizenship.
Following this British citizenship documents checklist is vital to ensure that your application is as comprehensive as possible.
Evidence of identity for British Citizenship application
Evidence of your identity is crucial to a British Citizenship application and you will need to submit British citizenship documents:
- Your Biometric Residence Permit (if you have one) and
- Your passport or national identity card or Home Office travel document or Home Office entitlement card or Home Office ARC letter or birth certificate or photographic driving licence or a bank, building society or credit card statement issued to you within the last six months.
You need to take care in sending the right identity paperwork as if you used certain types of documents to prove your identity when you took the Life in the UK test you will be expected to use the same identity documents to support your British naturalisation application.
Evidence of English language and British Citizenship applications
The Home Office rules on evidence of knowledge of English language are complicated. If you think that you are exempt from sitting the English language test based upon your country of origin or your qualifications, you should take legal advice to check that you do not need to sit the English language test to avoid delays with your British Citizenship application.
The Home Office will only accept English language qualifications from an approved Home Office list. To satisfy the English language requirement you will need to provide:
- The English language test certificate number from a Home Office approved qualification in English at B1 CEFR from the Secure English Language Test list; or
- A UK degree certificate; or
- A degree certificate that was taught or researched in a majority English speaking country and an Academic Qualification Level Statement (AQUALS) from UK NARIC confirming the qualification is equivalent to a UK qualification; or
- A degree certificate that was taught or researched in a non-majority English speaking country and an Academic Qualification Level Statement (AQUALS) from UK NARIC confirming the qualification is equivalent to a UK qualification or an English Language Proficiency Statement (ELPS) from UK NARIC showing that your degree was taught in English; or
- Your passport showing that you are a national of a majority English speaking country; or
- If you have a B1 level qualification that was accepted for the purposes of your Indefinite Leave to Remain application then although you do not need to pass another English language test for your British Citizenship application you need to produce evidence of the earlier English language test; or
- If you are claiming exemption from the need to evidence your ability to meet the English language requirement on the grounds of physical or mental health you must provide evidence from a doctor. The doctor must complete a prescribed Home Office form and they must confirm that your medical condition isn’t temporary in nature.
Evidence of residence and British Citizenship applications
If your application for British Citizenship is based on the length of your lawful residence in the UK then you will need to supply proof of living in the UK for 5 years for naturalisation. Supporting British Citizenship documents showing evidence of residence include:
- Your passport – if you can't provide your passport you should state why you can't do so and supply alternate supporting documents ; or
- Letter from your employer or employers saying when you started work (and end date if you have left their Employment) and supporting documents such as payslips or P60;
- Letter from educational establishment setting out your periods of study;
- Letter from a government departments indicating your presence in the UK for a specified period.
You will need to provide the British citizen documents above as additional proof of living in the UK if your passport won't be sufficient evidence because it wasn’t stamped on entry to the UK. This may be the case if, for example, you have a right of abode in the UK or you are a citizen of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus or a Taiwan national.
Depending on your nationality, you may be required to produce other evidence of the length of your stay for UK citizenship proof of residence. For example if you are an EEA national or Irish citizen then different rules apply on the supporting documents needed.
You can apply for British citizenship if you have proof of living in the UK for 5 years, or if you have had indefinite leave to remain, ‘settled status’ or indefinite leave to enter the UK for 12 months.
Evidence for British Citizenship application because of marriage
Requirements for British citizenship dictate that, if you are applying for British Citizenship based on your marriage or civil partnership to a British citizen or someone with Settled Status or Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK then you will need to provide supporting documents such as:
- Your spouse’s current passport or naturalisation documents. The full passport must be copied, including blank pages; and
- Your marriage certificate or civil partnership certificate.
If you want to apply for British Citizenship then it is best to speak to a British nationality solicitor to check that you are eligible to apply for British Citizenship and to discuss the supporting documents that you will need to produce to best ensure that your British naturalisation application is approved by the Home Office.
British Citizenship solicitors
London based OTS Solicitors are specialists in Immigration and British nationality applications. Their expertise is recognised in the two leading law directories, The Legal 500 and Chambers Guide to the Legal Profession.
If you need help with creating a British citizenship documents checklist, are concerned about whether you have the right supporting documents for your British Citizenship application or need advice on your eligibility to make a British naturalisation application then OTS Solicitors can help you.
To speak to a British Citizenship solicitor about anything from the supporting documents for a naturalisation application, through to proof of living in the UK for 5 years, call 0203 959 9123 or complete the online enquiry form.