The UK immigration rules provide different visas with various criteria and procedures for individuals who wish to come to the UK for business settlement. One of the famous routes for settlement is ILR (Indefinite leave to remain), which allows you to stay in the UK for up to 5 years. ILR allows you to work, study, and stay there hassle-free.  

Moreover, like British citizens, ILR holders can get healthcare advantages, citizenship, and education for free. Individuals with ILR can access these opportunities after completing five years. 

What Is the UK an ILR?

ILR applicants have to pass some tests and meet criteria such as immigration test, life in the UK test, residency certificate, and language test. The process might be time-consuming or complex depending on the category you applied for.

ILR gives the chance of permanent residence and stability in the UK. It is also more secure than other visas as its duration is longer. The only things that are restricted are not breaking the law or having violent records. 

What Are The Eligibility Requirements For an ILR? 

Some general and basic requirements for an ILR UK are given below:

  • Applicants have to live in the UK lawfully for a certain period.
  • Try not to break any immigration law, and applicants must not have any criminal record.
  • Applicants must stay in the UK during the qualifying period of ILR. In 12 months, they can travel from the UK to any country worldwide, but they should stay within 180 days. 
  • Pass the UK test based on the history and traditions of the British.
  • According to the European language framework, applicants must have proof of the B1 English language test.
  • An ILR application is not needed for candidates whose parents and spouses already have British citizenship. Also, an adult candidate living in the UK to care for a British-citizen parent can settle in the UK without an ILR application.

What Are The Necessary Documents To Submit For Application? 

An applicant requires a lot of necessary documents and supporting documents to make the application strong and avoid rejection. In addition, the candidate needs to provide original documents, but in any case, if you cannot access original documents, inform the UK home office and consult with them. Documents that are required are given below:

  • All travel documents, including your passport and your national ID card. 
  • Adoption or birth certificate.
  • Immigration history.
  • A police registration certificate is required when you are in the UK.
  • Provide financial documents like bank statements.
  • UK Life pass certificate.
  • Also, applicants must have two passport-sized pictures. 

Important Information About English Language Test

You would have to provide proof of a B1 certificate in English test that shows that the applicant has good communication skills in English, such as reading, listening, and reading, whenever you apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain. However, overseas candidates from English-speaking countries do not take such tests. These English-speaking countries are listed below:

  • USA
  • Tobago and Trinidad 
  • St Lucia
  • St Nevis and Kitts
  • Jamaica
  • New Zealand
  • Ireland
  • Canada 
  • Grenada
  • Barbados
  • Australia
  • The Bahamas
  • Barbuda and Antigua

And the applicants who are not asked for the English test are mentioned below:

  • Applicants aged 65 and above.
  • Highly qualified degree holders with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in English. 
  • People who are considered under humanitarian protection.
  • Spouse of a person who died in the UK with citizenship.

Other Visa Options That Convert To ILR

People living lawfully in the UK with a settlement visa are allowed to apply for ILR when this visa expires. Or the person with a settlement visa can live in the UK after the expiry of the current visa. After that, the applicant has to convert for the following visa:

  • Unmarried partner visa
  • Spouse visa
  • Global Talent visa
  • Family visa
  • Innovator visa
  • Tier 1 visa
  • Skilled worker visa
  • Sportsman visa
  • T2 Minister of Region visa
  • Start-up visa
  • Specialist or senior worker visa
  • Retired person visa
  • Uk ancestry visa
  • Long residence visa
  • Returning resident visa

What is The Meaning of Life in the UK Test? 

Life In The UK Test or Citizenship Test is the main factor of ILR, which is based on British culture, traditions, and history. The time given for this test is 45 minutes, and applicants have to answer 24 questions, scoring 75 % marks. The cost of this test is £50, and 30 centers are available, but you have to choose any five that are near your residence. 

The applicant can retest in case he/she fails to pass the test in the next seven days. People over 65 or under 18 are not allowed to sit the test. If the applicant can not appear on the test due to an extreme medical condition, that applicant will also get another chance. 

On the day the test appears, you must bring your official identification, driving license, and the UK address where you live. Also, you need to submit your Life In The UK test. 

What Are The Current Fees For an ILR?

ILR application fees for all types of candidates are the same, but if someone wants to extend the stay, it costs an additional fee. So, the fees for the visa is:

Type Of Fee


Application fees


Fee to Extend the Stay


Biometric Registration fee


Moreover, as Indefinite Leave to Remain is a long process for an applicant’s settlement, there is no processing time limit. Generally, it takes six months to process an ILR application.


What kind of form is required to apply for ILR?

Typically, two different forms are required to apply for ILR UK, depending on the category M and O forms. M form is for unmarried partners, spouses, civil partners, settled persons, and same-gender partners. Form O is for work visas, asylum, and long residence. You can get these forms from the official UK government websites. 

What is an ILR card?

ILR is also known as a BRP (Biometric Residence Permit), issued by the UK home office to eligible people. Indefinite leave of remain is a physical card that contains the applicant’s biographical details, such as name, photo, identity, and fingerprint. 

Can I apply again after five years of ILR?

After completing your five years in the UK and getting your ILR card, you can apply again for British Citizenship. However, the rules will change, so you must consult the Home Office. 

What is the processing time of an ILR application?

Processing time depends on several factors, such as:

  • Case complexity
  • The workload in the visa office
  • Application issues
  • Immigration department 

The processing of ILR for candidates usually takes several months for those who want to settle permanently in the UK. On ILR, individuals are free to stay in the UK without restrictions, with security and a sense of stability. Also, it gives the opportunity to become a citizen, which would be complex and time-consuming. If you provide the proper documents, you can take advantage of them. ILR is a quiet, easy step toward building a happy lifestyle in the UK. 

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Our Head Solicitor
Khurram Amir Qureshi

Khurram Amir Qureshi has been an advocate of Pakistan since 2004, a Solicitor of England and Wales since 2009, Solicitor of Ireland since 2015. He has extensive experience in family law, Immigration law, Personal injury cases, and Civil and Commercial litigation gaining over 13 years of continuous practice in England and Wales.

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