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British Citizenship By Registration

There are many circumstances under which a person may be entitled to register for British Citizenship. Registration is a simpler method of acquiring citizenship thanĀ naturalisation, but only certain people are eligible.

Currently, registration is normally reserved for children under 18 in the following circumstances:

  • Children born in the UK where a parent obtains British citizenship or indefinite leave to remain after the child is born.
  • Children born in the UK who live in the UK until the age of 10.
  • Children born to a British father who is not married to the mother.
  • Certain children born outside the UK to a British citizen.
  • Children under 18 who are adopted outside the United Kingdom by British citizens
  • Children for whom the Secretary of State is willing to exercise her discretion to grant nationality, such as children in care and children who were born outside the UK who are older teenagers who have spent the majority of their lives in the UK.

Adults may also be entitled to be registered as British Citizens in some circumstances:

  • Persons born outside the UK to a British born or naturalised mother.
  • British Overseas citizens, British subjects, British Nationals overseas and – British protected persons.
  • Persons who have no other nationality.

In some cases, citizenship can be gained through registration as a matter of right provided all the requirements are met. However, in most cases being registered as a British citizen by the Home Office is a discretionary decision and the criteria for such decisions are not fully set out in the legislation. This makes it all the more important to seek our advice before any application is made.

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About BHD

We specialise in every aspect of immigration, asylum and human rights law involving migrants and have been involved in several cases that have played a part in shaping the interpretation of the law in the UK.

We employ expert immigration solicitors and benefit from having experienced in-house counsel to consult. Our firm offers a range of legal services, including advocacy at the Immigration and Asylum Tribunals, the High Court, the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.


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