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Indefinite Leave to Remain

Indefinite leave to remain or in short ILR is the UK Immigration option which allows a person to live in the UK indefinitely, this is also known as permanent residency. An individual who has been living in the UK under a visa category which leads to settlement may apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain and depending on the terms of their visa.

Carter Vincent Immigration can assist you in finding out whether you would qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain as well as handling the entire process of gaining ILR once you qualify.


Unlike a work permit where it would depend upon the offer of employment and the length of period granted for stay in the UK, Indefinite Leave to Remain imposes no time limit on the individual. Also there are no immigration restrictions upon the business or work the person is undertaking.


As mentioned above there is no time limit on indefinite leave to remain, however it is always recommended that a person on ILR status should not spend more than two years outside of the United Kingdom. A UK resident on indefinite leave to remain should consider the UK as their home and if the individual only spends short periods of time in the UK this may lead to them losing their ILR status. A person on ILR in the UK may become eligible for British Naturalisation to the UK if they meet the requirements for citizenship.

Eligibility Criteria

To qualify for Indefinite Leave To Remain, the applicant must have settled status in the UK. This commonly means that the applicant has been living in the UK on the same visa class for a minimum of five years (not including student visas).

The exception to this rule would be individuals who are on a De Facto Visa (Unmarried partner visa) or a Marriage Visa, these people would require only two years and for periods of exceptionally long residency in the UK, this could be 10 years legally in the UK on varying visa statuses or 20 years as a combination of legal and illegal residency.

Indefinite Leave To Remain and Marriage in Britain

If you successfully obtain for Indefinite Leave To Remain or permanent residency, you will not have restrictions to the work that you undertake and there will be no conditions or time limits on your stay in the UK.

Once you have permanent residency / indefinite leave to remain you will also have access to public benefits where eligible. To qualify as a permanent resident you will need to show that you were granted entry to the UK on a Marriage Visa and that the period of time has been successfully completed in accordance to the rules of your visa. This means that the marriage must still be in place and both you and your spouse have full intentions of continuing the marriage.

As part of your application for permanent residency / indefinite leave to remain, you will also need to provide various proof including passports and evidence of co-habitation as part of the application. We have assisted many individuals in remaining in the UK and obtaining permanent residency to the UK via a variety of visas. Our immigration consultants and caseworkers have a wide range of immigration expertise and experience to assist you.


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