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City Legal is a multi award winning law firm specialising in UK Immigration Law, Wills & Estate Planning, Global Citizenship as well as providing Business, Education and HR Consultancy to both individual and corporate clients around the world.
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Personal Immigration

UK Ancestry Visa

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UK Ancestry Visa

The Ancestry visa is for Commonwealth citizens, who have a grandparent born in the UK and enables them to enter, live, work and settle in the United Kingdom on the basis of this ancestry. This category can only be applied from outside the UK and is normally granted for 5 years.

UK Ancestry Visa Eligibility Requirements

In order to qualify for a UK Ancestry visa, the applicant must be above 17 years old and satisfy the below requirements.

  • Be a Commonwealth citizen
  • Have a grandparent who was born in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man or you must have a grandparent that was born in the Republic of Ireland prior to 31 March 1922.
  • Be able to and intend to work in the UK
  • Must be in a position to support and accommodate self and family without recourse to public funds.

The applicant must also show that they have enough funds in the bank account and also pay for the Immigration Health Surcharge. It is possible to establish and meet the relationship requirement if the applicant or their parents were previously adopted, and if such adoption is recognisable under UK laws.

Conditions of Leave and Settlement

The applicants, under this category if successful, are normally granted 5 years leave. The key advantages of this route are that there is no requirement of a work sponsor and applicants are free to live and work in the UK without any restriction and bring spouse, partner and/or dependent children to the UK. Dependants are also allowed to stay for the same time as the main applicant without any restrictions relating to their employment.

Further to the completion of 5 years residency, applicants may apply for settlement in the UK. They must provide evidence of working or genuinely seeking work during the 5 year residency to qualify for the settlement. In addition to this, applicants must not have spent more than 180 days outside the UK in any 12 months during the 5 years leading to settlement and must satisfy the knowledge of English language and Life in the UK.

How can we assist?

Our Immigration lawyers at City Legal have immense experience in assisting clients on family and private life visa applications. We are a multi award winning law firm and pride ourselves in being approachable, innovative and always going that extra mile to make sure our clients receive the individual attention they deserve. Our Immigration team maintains a high reputation and is committed to provide clear, transparent and reliable advice to our clients.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I apply for an Ancestry visa through my step-grandparent?

It is not possible to apply for a UK ancestry visa via step-parent route. However, it is possible to apply if the relationship is based on adoptions, but only if recognised under UK laws. Furthermore, it makes no difference if the descent stems from an illegitimate line outside of the marriage.

How do I demonstrate Intend to work in the UK?

The applicants may provide a job offer from a UK based employer or demonstrate the intention to work in the UK by registering at UK Job sites such as Reed or Monster, evidence any communication with recruiters or provide copies of job applications.

Can I extend my Ancestry visa?

It is possible to extend the ancestry visa for a further 5 year period and provides a great option if applicants are unable to meet all the requirements for indefinite leave to remain at the end of initial 5 year grant.

What if I don’t have my grandparent’s original birth certificate?

This is one of the most common issues faced by the applicants. We can assist the applicants to obtain a copy of the birth certificate or an extract of entry from the Register of Births. The process differs in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.

What can I do if my application is refused?

The Ancestry visa application refusal does not carry a right of appeal. It may be possible to request an administrative review of the decision if there has been a case working error or challenge the decision by Judicial Review if it was unlawful, unreasonable or procedurally improper.
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