10 years lawful and continuous residence the UK

If you have lived continuously in the UK for 10 years then you may be able to make an application for permanent residence in the UK based upon your length of stay.

You will need to show evidence that you have had  ‘continuous residence’ for 10 years with no more than 180 days absence at any one time and no more than an 540 days absence in total. You must not be in breach of immigration laws, except for any period of overstaying for 14 days or less and if there is good reason. (or 28 days before 24 Nov 2016)

The 10 years residence must all be legal residence and you must be able to provide evidence of your residence here for each of the 10 years.

The 10 years will be deemed to be broken if:

  • You were at any stage deported from the UK or left the UK after being refused leave to enter or remain
  • You left the UK and showed a clear intention not to return;
  • You left the UK and at the time had no reasonable expectation that you would lawfully be able to return
  • You have been convicted of an offence and sentenced to a period of imprisonment
  • You have spent a total of more than 180 days on any occasion or more than 540 days absent from the UK during the 10 year period

If the 10 year residence requirement is met then the Home Office will take other factors into consideration, including:

  • Age
  • Strength of connections in the UK
  • Personal history including character and conduct
  • Domestic circumstances
  • Compassionate circumstances
  • Any representations received on the Applicant’s behalf

If the application is successful you will be granted Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK as long as you are free of unspent criminal conditions and also meet the relevant English requirement which is currently to pass the Life in the UK test and Level B1 English language speaking and listening.

20 Years Long Residence

If you have lived in the UK for 20 years (even if illegal) or less in certain circumstances where there will be significant obstacles to reintegration back into life in your home country, then it is possible to apply for leave to remain.

You will have to provide evidence of each year’s residence and if successful will be granted 30 months leave to remain on the 120 month route to settlement. 

What we can do for you

Please contact our team of immigration experts today to discuss your options - 0808 166 8831 or email a.minnaar@sydneymitchell.co.uk or m.southall@sydneymitchell.co.uk alternatively complete our online enquiry form.

UK Top Tier Firm 2021 Lexcel Practice Management Standard Birmingham Law Firm of the Year for 2011 Resolution Collaborative Family Lawyer
The Law Society Accredited in Family Law Conveyancing Quality Scheme