UK Residence for Commonwealth Citizens

Information about becoming a UK resident through Commonwealth Citizenship of Ancestry Visa

///Residence Documents for Comonwealth Citizens
Residence Documents for Comonwealth Citizens 2018-11-19T09:43:38+00:00

Commonwealth citizens are citizens of a member state in the Commonwealth of Nations. However, Not all the Commonwealth citizens are allowed to have the right to Abode in the UK, or be able to live and work without limitations.

Certificate of Entitlement for the Right to Adobe

This UK residence document can be normally given to British citizens when they have to confirm their right for permanent residence in the UK. The document proving the right to abode can be issued also for some Commonwealth citizens and UK passport holders categorized as British subjects.

That applies if they have at least one parent born in the UK who was a UK and colonies citizen the time they’re born or adopted. And, on 31 December 1982 they have held a Commonwealth citizenship which they continually held since then.

This document can be taken also by females with a Commonwealth citizenship. This applies if they have been married before 1 January 1983 with a holder of right to abode, through which they have become Commonwealth citizen which they have never lost since then.

Commonwealth citizens can get this residence title only in the following cases:

  • As a result of a marriage to a male with a right to Abode
    • As, before 1 January 1983 a female Commonwealth citizen married a man with a right to Abode;
    • As, she entered before 1 August 1988 into the UK as a married person to such a man;
    • As, she entered into the UK legally, from the beginning of their marriage and then she was the only legal wife of such a man;
      The Right to Abode related to marriage cannot be given if the ex-husband of the aforementioned case at the moment has another wife, or they do not live anymore and their widow lives in the UK, or she lived in the UK anytime during her marriage, or she has a certificate of entitlement to right to Abode or permission to enter the UK because of such marriage with ex-husband of the candidate.
  • Inherited from a parent with a right to Abode in the UK
    • As, the candidate has at least one parent that was either born in the UK or was a citizen of the UK and colonies when the candidate was born, or adopted;
    • As, the candidate on 31 December 1982 was a Commonwealth citizen;
    • As, the candidate remained a Commonwealth citizen any time after that date

Certificate of entitlement for Right to Abode in the UK

Other people, despite such Commonwealth citizens cannot get the Right to Abode but they must apply for the certificate of entitlement to prove their Right to the Abode in the UK.

Documents needed to apply for this certificate:

  • A valid passport, or travel document – with permit stamps – telling that the candidate has the right to live in the UK, or with an outdated certificate of right to Abode;
  • Passport photos (2 copies);
  • For a candidate who on or after 1 January 1983 was registered or naturalized as a British citizen
    • Certificate of registration, or naturalization
  • For a candidate born before 1 January 1983 in the UK
    • Full birth certificate, with parents’ details;
  • For a candidate who before 1 January 1983 was registered or naturalized as a UK and Colonies citizen in the UK
    • Certificate registration or naturalization
  • For a candidate who on 21 May 2002 turn into a British citizen and before that they were a British overseas territories citizen
    • Passport of British overseas territories;
    • Complete birth certificate;
    • When born out of an overseas territory:
      • Parents’ certificate of marriage – if applying through the father;
      • Parent’s complete certificate of birth,
      • Parent’s certificate of registration or naturalization;
    • When registered or naturalized before 21 May 2002 as a British overseas territories citizen:
      • Certificate of registration or naturalization;
    • When registered or naturalized on or after 21 May 2002 as a British overseas territories citizen:
      • Certificate of registration or naturalization and certificate of registration as a British citizen
  • For a candidate born before 1 January 1983 who is a Commonwealth citizen with a parent born in the UK:
    • Applicant’s complete certificate of birth;
    • Parent’s complete certificate of birth;
    • Certificate of marriage – when applying through the father
  • For a female candidate who is a Commonwealth citizen married before 1 January 1983 in the UK to a man with the right of abode there:
    • Applicant’s certificate of marriage;
    • Documents to confirm that the applicant’s husband had, before 1 January 1983, the right of abode
      • Passport or the UK birth certificate;
      • Certificate of registration or naturalization
  • For a candidate born on or after 1 January in the UK or the Falkland Islands 1983, or on or after 21 May 2002 in another qualifying British overseas territory:
    • Applicant’s complete certificate of birth;
    • Parent passport as a British citizen or telling that they at that time had a settlement permission (Indefinite Leave to Remain- ILR);
    • If the candidate is born before 1 July and applies through the father:
      • Parents’ certificate of marriage
  • For a candidate born on or after 1 January 1983 out of the UK and the Falkland Islands, or born on or after 21 May 2002 out of the UK and any qualifying British overseas territory, with a parent born in the UK or the Falkland Islands, or born on/after 21 May 2002 in any British overseas territory with a parent registered or naturalized in the UK before they were born
    • Applicant’s complete certificate of birth;
    • When the candidate was born before 1 July 2006 and is applying through the father
      • Parent’s certificate of marriage
    • Parent’s complete certificate of birth;
    • Certificate of registration, or naturalization
  • For a candidate born on or after 1 January 1983, out of the UK and the Falkland Islands, or born on or after 21 May 2002 out of the UK and any British overseas territory, with a parent who, when the candidate was born was a British overseas territories citizen
    • Applicant’s complete certificate of birth;
    • When the candidate was born before 1 July 2006 and is applying through the father
      • Parents’ certificate of marriage;
    • Letter from the employer to confirm that the parent was working when the candidate was born
  • For a candidate adopted on or after 1 June 2003, in a British overseas territory, or elsewhere
    • Certificate of adoption;
    • Passport of the country they lived when adopted the candidate;
  • For a candidate who had a UK and Colonies citizenship, and who before 1 January 1983 has lived in the UK for 5 successive years and after that they took the settlement permission
    • A passport of UK and Colonies;
    • A certificate of naturalization or registration in UK and Colonies;
    • Document (s) to confirm settlement in the UK and for living in the UK before 1 January 1983
      • Passport;
      • P60s;
      • Information about National Insurance contributions;
      • DSS entitlements;
      • Letter of employers
  • For a candidate who had a UK and Colonies citizenship, whose parent before the candidate was born/adopted was either born, adopted, registered or naturalized in the UK
    • Applicant’s complete certificate of birth;
    • Applicant’s certificate of adoption;
    • Parents’ certificate of marriage – when born before 1 July 2006 and applying through the father
    • Parent’s’ complete certificate of birth,
    • Parent’s’ certificate of adoption;
    • Certificate of registration or naturalization
  • For a candidate who had a UK and Colonies citizenship, whose grandparent before the candidate’s parent was born/adopted, was either born, adopted, registered or naturalized in the UK
    • Parents’ certificate of marriage –when applying through the father
    • Parent’s complete certificate of birth;
    • Certificate of adoption;
    • Applicant’s complete certificate of birth;
    • Applicant’s certificate of adoption;
    • Grandparents’ certificate of marriage – when applying through the grandparent;
    • Grandparent’s complete certificate of birth;
    • Grandparent’s complete certificate of adoption;
    • Grandparent’s certificate of registration or naturalization

It costs £321 to apply for this certificate from within the UK.

Expiration of the certificate of entitlement to the right of abode in the UK

The certificate is valid up to the passport’s valid period. When the new passport is taken, there should be done a new certificate application.

If the holder has taken the certificate after 21 December 2006, the document can be taken away (removed) from the holder in the following cases, when:

  • The candidate does not anymore enjoy the right to Abode in the UK;
  • The candidate does not hold the passport with a right to Abode as a British citizen or British subject;
  • The candidate has a valid certificate in another passport;
  • The female candidate was restricted from the right to Abode – as such a right was due to a marriage to a man with a right to Abode; while, later another woman has received the right to Abode based on a marriage to the same man;
  • There exist an order to cancel the candidate’s right to Abode in the UK

UK Ancestry Visa

This visa is for Commonwealth citizens who are out of the UK whose grandparents were born in the UK, and want to work in the UK.

This visa is given for 5 years, and you can extend the period of stay for additional 5 years while being in the UK. There is a possibility to get an Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR or Settlement Permission) in this visa category, after living in the UK for at least 5 continuous years with this visa. The application for this visa must be done 3 months before the planned travel, the earliest.

With this visa a holder can get a job, enroll in studies, take dependent family members, extend the period of stay, but cannot use public money and is forbidden to move (switch) to this visa from another one.

A person applying for UK Ancestry Visa must be of the following situations:

  • Must pass general grounds for refusal;
  • Must be 17 or older;
  • Is able and intents to work in the UK;
  • Be a grandchild of a persons who was born either in the UK (not excluding Channel Islands and the Isle of Man), in the Republic of Ireland (before 31 March 1922), or inside a British-registered ship or airplane;
  • Is themself or any of their parents is adopted, a child within a marriage, or out of it

Documents to apply for a UK Ancestry Visa are:

  • A valid passport or travel document;
  • Documents to confirm maintenance (money) for himself and any dependents for the period of stay in the UK. Evidence that you will be able to maintain yourself financially, as well as any dependant, for your whole stay. Generally, a bank statement or pay slips from the recent 6 months are required.Each visa has its own required fixed amount of money that the candidate must prove having for living costs when applying for a visa.
  • Tuberculosis test results (if from a country who must do the test);
  • Birth certificate;
  • Marriage certificate, civil partnership registration certificate (for a dependent partner);
  • Documents of adoption (if the candidate, or a parent is adopted);
  • Documents to confirm the true intention to get employed in the UK
  • Documents to confirm job offers (if about to work for someone else);
  • Business plan (if seeking self-employment);
  • Document to confirm paying the Health Surcharge

This money must be paid to apply as the main candidate and any dependent: to apply for the visa £496, to extend the visa, to extend the visa by post £993, and to apply in person through premium service £1,583.

Residence permits under Windrush Scheme

There are several residence documents that since May 30, 2018 are issued to Commonwealth and other foreign citizens, known as “Windrush generation”. This includes all such people having lived in the UK for a long period without having any residence document showing their legal status in the UK.

These residence documents are for Commonwealth citizens having continually stayed in the UK since before January 1, 1973, and those with the Right to Abode. Or, they have lived in the UK since before that date, but left the UK for over 2 years to another state, and now they’re permanent residents.

This includes also children of Commonwealth citizens having continually lived in the UK since before January 1, 1973, and those with the Right to Abode.

These are also for foreigners who before December 31, 1988 came to the UK and they never left the since then.

The application under the Windrush scheme for this residence permit may be done from in and outside the UK.

These are the documents that can be granted for the “Windrush Generation”:

  • Registration Certificate as a British citizen. If they’re already British citizens.
  • Document confirming naturalization. If they’re not yet but want to become British citizens and qualify for that.
  • Certificate of Entitlement confirming the Right to Abode. If they don’t qualify as British citizens, neither for naturalization.
  • Biometric permanent residence permit (NTL- no time limit). If the aforesaid certificate cannot be offered.