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If you believe you are now eligible to apply for British citizenship or other forms of British nationality then this page will help understand whether you could be a British citizen, how you can apply for British citizenship and explain other forms of British nationality, and how you can give up your citizenship. Depending on your current citizenship or nationality, you may be able to apply in several ways. If you are unsure if you meet the requirements, you should contact us before submitting your application.
Note: The information provided in this section is not intended to be comprehensive, and is not a complete statement of immigration and nationality law or policy.
What is British citizenship?
British citizenship is one of the six different forms of British nationality. Some of these were defined in the British Nationality Act 1981, which came into force on 1 January 1983. The laws defining how citizenship can be obtained changed on that date, which is why you will often see references to 1983 on this site.
The forms of nationality are:
Who has the right to live in the United Kingdom?
All British citizens have the right of abode in the UK. Some Commonwealth citizens also have the right of abode, but some others cannot claim the right of abode. If you are not sure whether you have the right of abode, you can phone the Home Office nationality contact centre for advice or contact us.
How to claim the right of abode
You can use the following documents as evidence that you have the right of abode:
Who can apply for British citizenship and other forms of British nationality?
Depending on your current citizenship or nationality, you may be able to apply in several ways.
Can I be naturalised as a British citizen?
If you are over 18 and have been living in the United Kingdom for the last five years (or three years if you are married to or a civil partner of a British citizen) you may be able to apply for naturalisation as a British citizen. You may also be able to apply for naturalisation if you or your husband, wife or civil partner is in crown or designated service outside the United Kingdom. This section covers AN applications.
There are seven requirements you need to meet before you apply:
For spouses and civil partners:
Can I register as a British citizen or British overseas territories citizen?
If you need to register as a British overseas territories citizen there are several categories to consider. As a British overseas territories citizen (BOTC) who has previously given up citizenship, you may be eligible to apply under several categories.
Note: This section covers BOS, BOTA, EM, UKM, G, T, RS1 and RS2 applications.
Useful questions and links to the answers:
Can I register a person under 18 as a British citizen or for another form of nationality?
A person under 18 can register as a British citizen, British overseas territories citizen, British overseas citizen, or British subject. In addition to the categories listed below, people under 18 can register as British citizens if they are:
Useful questions and links to the answers:
Can I register as a British citizen or for another form of British nationality if I am stateless?
This will depend on your circumstances, click the below links to see if you can or not apply:
Good character requirement
The good character requirement must be met by anyone applying for British nationality unless:
Note: The Home Office will consider you to be of good character if you show respect for the rights and freedom of the United Kingdom, have observed its laws and fulfilled your duties and obligations as a resident.
We hope the above has helped you, if you are still unsure and need additional advice you can contact us.
Nationality & Citizenship
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