Can I still apply for naturalisation (citizenship) if I have many absences? banner

Can I still apply for naturalisation (citizenship) if I have many absences?

Can I still apply for naturalisation (citizenship) if I have many absences?

  • Posted on

Hi, I have been living in the UK for the past 7 years and have the EU settled status. I am considering applying for British citizenship but I have exceeded the 450 days absences from the UK in the past 5 years (about 500 days) mostly because I travelled for work and was also impacted by Covid-19 restrictions when visiting family in 2020 and 2021? Can my application still be considered or do you believe it is pointless to apply? I meet all other requirements.

Public Answer

Exceeding the allowable absences from the UK could impact your eligibility for British citizenship, but it doesn’t necessarily mean an automatic rejection. The standard requirement for absences is usually not exceeding 450 days in the past 5 years for settled status or indefinite leave to remain. The rules are different for those married to a British national.

However, there can be discretion in exceptional circumstances, such as for work-related travel or situations impacted by COVID-19 restrictions that caused unavoidable absences. The Home Office might consider these circumstances when assessing your application.

It’s crucial to provide a detailed explanation and evidence supporting these absences in your citizenship application. Documentation of work-related travel, COVID-19-related travel disruptions, letters from employers verifying work obligations, or any other supporting evidence can strengthen your case.

The decision ultimately lies with the Home Office, and they may consider various factors when reviewing your application, including the reasons for your absences and your ties to the UK. For more information, please contact us on 02039599123 or click here 

[This question has been successfully answered by our lawyers in a private e-mail]

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