If you are not a citizen of the UK but have been living in the country and would like to remain indefinitely, you may be able to apply to stay on a permanent basis. This application will grant you permanent leave to stay in the UK. This means that the requirements of the Immigration Rules are very strict.

You will need to pass the Life in the UK test to be granted ILR UK, as well as an English Language test if you are not from an English-speaking country. Most commonly, you will be able to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain after 5 years. This will need to be a continuous five years on the same visa type with no time out of the country over the Home Office limit. If you have switched visa types in these five years, you will need to apply for ILR UK through the 10-year route. Some visas, such as the Tier 1 Investor Visa will allow you to apply for your ILR Visa earlier than five years under certain conditions.

How can IAS help?

Our lawyers can guide you through the complex process of applying for ILR UK. Your personal lawyer will assess your eligibility and advise you on documents you can provide. With our service, we will organize your entire ILR application. Your lawyer will also prepare you for the ‘Life in the UK test’ and produce a detailed Letter of Representation to support your case. The Immigration Advice Service has extensive knowledge of all aspects of UK immigration law. Contact us today on +1844 290 6312 to start your ILR application. Alternatively, you can use our online contact form to make an inquiry.


Who can get Indefinite Leave to Remain?

To qualify for ILR (Indefinite Leave to Remain), you most commonly must have leave in the UK as:

  • A partner
  • A family member
  • A certain type of worker
  • On continuous and long-term lawful residence
  • With Ancestry ties

The dependent child of a British citizen or person with settled status (ILR) may be given immediate Leave to Remain indefinitely. Refugees who are resettled in the UK through the Gateway Protection Programme will also receive ILR UK.

Can I apply for ILR?

To start your ILR UK application you must already be in the UK and, in many cases, will need to demonstrate a solid knowledge of language and life in the UK. Certain applicants are exempt from this, including:

  • children under the age of 18;
  • parents;
  • grandparents;
  • and other dependent relatives of those with settled status or those with refugee status.

The ILR requirements include passing a ‘Life in the UK test’ and English Language requirement. The English Language test is not required for applicants who have a degree or qualification in English. The test is also waived for nationals of an English-speaking country.

As part of the ILR UK application, you will also be required to submit your biometric information (fingerprints and facial image). This will allow you to obtain your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP). This will confirm your immigration status and entitlements.

What is Further Leave to Remain?

If you are not yet eligible to submit your ILR UK application, you may be able to extend your current visa. This is known as Further Leave to Remain. Most visa categories can be extended, except for Visitor Visas which can only be granted for up to six months. Although there are limited circumstances in which you can switch to another visa.

You must apply for Further Leave to Remain before your current visa permission expires. If you do not, you may be considered an overstayer and will risk an order for enforced removal.

Can ILR UK expire?

If you have been out of the UK for a continuous period of two years, you may have lost your permission for ILR.

I am applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), should I sit the Life in the UK test?

You will need to sit a Life in the UK test as part of your ILR application if you are between the ages of 18 and 65.

This test is a standard exam to test your knowledge of British traditions, customs, history, and culture. To pass the test and make sure you satisfy this requirement for your ILR application, you must score 75% or above.

There is a fee for this test which you must pay every time you take it. You may take the test as many times as you need to.

What are the other ILR Visa requirements?

Unfortunately, passing the Life in the UK test is not enough on its own to qualify for ILR in the UK.

You will also need to satisfy a number of other requirements. As of October 2013, passing a relevant English Language qualification is one of these. This is only required for those who are not nationals of an English-speaking country.

For full details of the requirements for an ILR application, and to make sure you meet all the requirements, speak to an immigration lawyer today.

I have some unspent convictions; will this affect my Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) application?

It is highly likely that previous convictions will affect your Indefinite Leave to Remain application. However, this will depend on your individual circumstances.

If you have spent your convictions, this could still affect your application, depending on the type of conviction.

If you are concerned about any convictions you may have that would affect your application for ILR UK, speak with an immigration lawyer.

What services does IAS offer?

IAS has a wealth of knowledge on applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), including appeals in the event of a refusal. As the UK’s leading immigration advice firm, we have an extensive track record of successful applications for ILR UK.

Our services include:

  • Liaising with you in person, over the phone or via Skype;
  • Confirming your eligibility for ILR;
  • Ensuring your documents are sufficient and professionally organized;
  • Communicating with the Home Office throughout your application;
  • Completing your application form in a high-quality and expert manner;
  • Assisting you with preparing for the ‘Life in the UK test’;
  • Ensuring you meet the English Language requirement if necessary.

Please do not hesitate to contact the lawyers at IAS to start your application for the ILR Visa as soon as possible. You can use our online inquiry form or call us on +1844 290 6312.

Our Indefinite Leave to Remain Packages

Advice Package

Comprehensive immigration advice tailored to you, with written confirmation


Application Package

Full assistance throughout your entire application process


Fast Track Package

A premium service which allows your application to take priority position in your lawyer's workload


Appeal Package

Full representation through your appeal, including physical representation if your case is heard by a tribunal


A few of

our experienced

immigration lawyers

Case studies

Our team of experts can help you with any issues or queries you need to discuss. Get in touch now to find out your options.

Moving a business to the UK

Gabrielle owned a successful business in Canada and she wanted to expand her business in the UK. She was able to focus on the business side of her expansion as… Read More

Fiance Visa for Thai partner

John (a UK national) met Vitchita (a Thai national) online and stayed in contact with her for many months.
After they met in person, they decided that there was something special… Read More

Melissa’s Daughter’s British Citizenship

Melissa and her child are Filipino nationals who came to the UK to join Melissa’s husband.
Complications with their initial application and insufficient information being provided resulted in her child’s… Read More

Asis: EEA Free Movement

Asis, a Spanish national, was offered employment in the UK but was unsure whether or not he would be able to bring his wife and children with him when he… Read More

Harrison: Entrepreneur Visa

Harrison wanted to expand his Singapore-based business to the United Kingdom. He contacted IAS and worked closely with one of our lawyers who advised him to apply for for a… Read More

Marta: EEA PR

Marta is a Polish national who arrived in the UK to study four years ago and came close to fulfilling the requirements for Permanent Residency. However, she was unaware of… Read More

Latest reviews

Recently, I had engaged Nasreen Ali to assist in the successful application for UK citizenship for my daughter. Prior to… Read More

Ms Houri Zahedi had endless patience during our telephone consultation and gave us high quality advice!


Accurate, up to date information with very useful advice.

Latest news

PERM Labor Certification: Requirements and Eligibility Read More