Indefinite Leave to Remain: How To Qualify & Apply for ILR Visa in the UK

How To, Immigration Tips
apply for ilr visa london uk

Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) is for you if you plan to stay in the UK permanently. An immigrant to the UK who has granted indefinite leave to remain (ILR) can live here permanently without facing immigration limitations. ILR visa will always allow you and your family to live, work, or study in the UK without applying for a different visa.

Other terms for ILR visa include settled status (as defined by the EU Settlement Scheme), permanent residence, and permanent settlement. Your family’s position in the UK will be safe due to ILR. Many people who come to the UK to live, work, or be with family have Indefinite Leave to Remain as their ultimate goal. The last step before getting British citizenship reflects in it.

With ILR, you will be eligible to:

Apply For a Skilled Worker Visa

  • Live
  • Study
  • Work (without regulations)
  • Access public funds (e.g. benefits)
  • Travel inside and outside the UK without restriction (although look out for spending too much time outside the country; this is covered in more depth below).
  • After a year, apply for British citizenship.

How To Qualify For ILR:

  • After living in the UK for a specified period, you may be eligible for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) under many visa categories. Your current visa category and status in the UK will determine how long you must wait to qualify.
  • There are many paths one might pursue to be eligible for ILR. Some candidates can apply for ILR after two years, while the majority can, if all other conditions are satisfied, do so after 5 years of residency. For those who have spent 10 years living in the UK, there is also a 10-year route.
  • The main requirements for Indefinite Leave to Remain requests are fulfilling the language and lifestyle requirements and having lived in the UK for the required time while holding a specific type of visa.

Also Read: How Important to Get Regulated Immigration Advice From Immigration Solicitors in London?

Primary Routes to Qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain:

indefinite leave to remain expiry

There are many ways to become eligible for indefinite leave to remain. ILR eligibility generally falls into one of the following categories:

  • Tier 1 migrants – Tier 1 (General), Tier 1 (Entrepreneur), Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent), Tier 1 (Investor) and their dependents.
  • Tier 2 (General) migrants and their dependants.
  • Spouse or partner of a citizen of the UK.
  • UK ancestry route.
  • Transitional provisions cover domestic workers.
  • Long residence applications 10 years

Only based on it may you apply for indefinite leave to remain. You must fulfil the time requirements to be qualified for Indefinite Leave to Remain, depending on your existing visa type and the procedures mentioned above. Please get in touch with My Legal Services immigration team to provide more detailed advice on apply for ILR.

British Citizenship after Indefinite Leave to Remain:

British Citizenship Application Online

One may apply for British citizenship after possessing ILR status in the UK for at least a year. Additionally, after getting ILR, a spouse visa holder may apply immediately to become a British citizen.

Applying for a British passport, which allows unrestricted travel both inside and outside the UK, is one of the benefits of citizenship. Furthermore, you can leave the country for as long as you wish without having your rights removed. Additionally, you can vote in national and local elections if you choose.

Candidates for citizenship must:

  • Prove the Home Office’s presence in the country for five years before the application deadline.
  • Highlight their ability in Welsh, Scottish Gaelic, or English.
  • Have successfully passed the UK life test and other test unless exempt 
  • Intend to remain in the United Kingdom.

Also Read: Process to Get a UK Work Permit Visa For EU and Non-EU Citizens

How to Fulfil the English Language Requirements:

You can show that you have the required English language proficiency by having the following:

  • An English proficiency test score of B1, B2, C1, or C2.
  • An English-taught or English-researched degree.


You can apply for British citizenship after receiving ILR. Applicants generally hold their ILR status for 12 months to apply for British citizenship. Applicants do not need to fulfil this 12-month requirement if they are married or in a civil partnership with a British citizen. Once the Home Office confirms their ILR status, they can apply for citizenship.

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