Applying for citizenship in the UK is not that difficult anymore. The main reason for that is being able to do everything online. Of course, that doesn’t mean that one should neglect all requirements thinking they are irrelevant, far from it, but it means that the waiting period for a response is much shorter. On the other hand, it’s also important to know how to make that application successful, and following the procedure and the rules will get you there, but here are some other examples of what to expect and how to be prepared.
Check the fees
To do anything regarding the application, you first need to pay a certain amount of money, and depending on the type of Visa you apply for, these fees can vary. This step is important as regardless if one meets all the criteria and has passed all the tests if they haven’t paid every fee, it would all be for nothing. Most people make mistakes when they have to check what qualifications they have and whether they have to pay all the fees or just some of them. So, before taking any action, make sure to inform yourself on how to apply for a British citizenship and how much it all costs.
The first fee, the one every applicant has to pay, is usually around 1300 pounds for adults and approximately 1000 pounds for persons under the age of 18. Once you have covered this, the second thing to check is whether you will also have to pay for an English test or just do the Life in the UK Test. Namely, if all that’s needed is the Life in the UK test, it will save you 150 pounds, and the fee will be around 50 pounds. That is why checking whether someone meets the criteria regarding their knowledge of the English language is so important. Besides all this, it’s also important to know that if one sends the application without proper paperwork or if they simply aren’t eligible, you shouldn’t expect to get back most of their money.
Gather all the documents
Another common mistake people make is not having all the paperwork that is required. Yes, having to provide certain documents might seem not that relevant to someone, but it’s simple, and if it is a must – it’s a must. Overlooking the type of documents that one needs is another problem, which is why making rash decisions and rushing to apply is never a good idea.
The first reason for that is that if even one document is missing, it will just prolong the waiting period as the applicant will have to deliver that document. The second reason is that the application will get refused, and that will get into the permanent record, which can be something that, at some point in the future, might pose an issue. So, make sure to have all the paperwork before applying, and some of the required documents are:
- proof of living in the UK
- proof of knowledge of the English language
- 2 persons that will identify you (referees)
- proof of not going bankrupt
- proof of not having any legal issues
- passing the “Life in the UK test“
Life in the UK test
People are usually scared of tests, and the anxiety can affect the results and cause them not to pass them, which can be pretty stressful. Since questions in this test are related to the legal system, laws, and regulations about working and living in the UK, many people get scared before even starting to learn about it, but there is no need to do that. There is a great official handbook that can help people prepare, and various courses that they can attend and learn from experienced instructors. Besides that, not all people need to pass this test, and people under 18 and over 65 or with certain medical conditions can apply without passing it.
However, if you need to go to the test, it is great to know that it can be done any time before the application and as many times as needed to pass, so there is no need to be afraid of trying.
Knowing the language
Logically, one needs to understand the language if one wants to apply for citizenship in a certain country, and the UK is not an exception. Regarding that, whoever decides to apply must pass the test that proves they understand English, Scottish Gaelic, or Welsh, with some small exceptions. Namely, people over 65 or under 18 do not need to worry about the test, and also those who come from exempt countries or have proof they have a degree taught or researched in English or certain medical conditions.
The test itself has two parts – listening and speaking, and one should pass both of them to get a certificate, which is only valid if it is from approved centers. It is valid for two years, so check the expiration date before applying for citizenship.
Do not forget to apply for the passport
Getting UK citizenship is not the end, especially for those who love to travel, and because of that, we will give you one more tip that will be pretty useful once the entire process is over. To visit a foreign country, one will need a passport, and if they forget to apply for it, they will not get it automatically. It is extremely important to double-check all the details as they need to be identical in a passport application and citizenship certificate, and any small difference can result in not getting it.
The bottom line
As you can see, applying for the UK citizenship and the entire process of getting it is much easier than before, and most of it can be done without leaving home. It is important to get informed and check all the details before applying, as it will increase the chances of getting it and shorten the waiting period, which is usually about six months.