Long residence in the UK


10 Years Residence Rule

Once a migrant has lived in the UK continuously and lawfully for ten years, he/she may apply to settle in the UK on this basis.

According to the Home Office policy, individuals cannot be absent from the UK for any period in excess of six months at once or 540 days in total. This said, we have experience in successfully asking the Home Office to exercise discretion over excess absences arising in compassionate circumstances.


20 Year Rule

The 20-year rule on long residence is contained in paragraphs 276ADE(i) and (iii) of the Immigration Rules. Under the 20 year rule a person does not have to have lived in the UK lawfully. Rather, they must have lived in the UK continuously over a period of 20 years.

Unlike under the 10-year rule, under the 20-year route, a person does not have to be lawful in the UK to have continuous residence. The biggest challenge for those who wish to apply under the 20-year rule is providing documentary evidence to demonstrate that you have lived in the UK throughout this time. We have the expertise and experience to be able to assist you with making these applications.

The applicant will be granted leave to remain for a period of 30 months, in other words two and a half years. There is usually a no recourse to public funds condition attached to a grant of leave to remain.

A person has to live in the UK for 120 months – i.e. 10 years – before they can apply for settlement.

From the planning stage through to the to end, we are able to assist with the application and we help clients navigate the complex application process. Accordingly, please do not hesitate to get in touch for expert advice if you require assistance in understanding these requirements and if you would like to know more about how to apply.