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UK_Lawyer, Solicitor
Category: UK Immigration Law
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Experience:  I am a qualified solicitor and an expert in UK law.
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This question concerns Indefinite Leave to Remain. I understand

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This question concerns Indefinite Leave to Remain. I understand that one has to live in the UK consistently for 10 years in order to apply for Indefinite leave to remain. I have lived in the UK for a total of 12 years, legally. However, this wasn't in one go. I was basically a dependent on my father who used to work for the University of Liverpool when I was a child for 6 years. He didn't apply for indefinite leave when he had the chance because he genuinely didn't think immigration rules were going to become so strict. Then I came to study for a total of 5 years when I was older (18, on a student visa). I understand that the 10 year rule is important, but I think in my scenario, it's disproportionate for the overall aim. Aside from the fact that I've spent a lot of time in the UK, I have only lived in the country which I'm a national of (Tanzania) for 2 years. I left the country when I was 1. The only person from my immediate family that is currently based there is my mother, and she only started living there a little over 1 year ago. I don't even speak the local language, so both culturally and linguistically, I've always felt like an outsider even though legally, I'm Tanzanian. I have one sister that was born here, the other two have indefinete leave to remain and even my nephews are British Citizens. I was wondering if there could be an exception to the 10 year rule in my case, because I genuinely feel it infringes on my right to a private and family life and discriminates me based on my nationality.
Hi thank you for your question. Please remember to RATE my answer OK SERVICE, GOOD SERVICE OR EXCELLENT SERVICE so I can get credited for my time.

Just to clarify over the last 12 years how many years have you spent in the UK and how many have you spent outside of the UK?

Kind regards
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Over the last 12 years, I've spent 6 and a half years in the UK and 5 and half outside the UK. However, I also lived in the UK as a dependant between the ages of 1 and 7 when I was a kid.

Thank you for your reply.

Unfortunatley, it would not be possible for you to apply for indefinite leave to remain on the basis of 10 year long residency, simply because you have not spent a continuous 10 years in the UK. The requirements are as follows:

You must must meet the following requirements, to be granted indefinite leave under the 10 year long rule:

• The applicant must have at least 10 years lawful residence in the UK.

• There is no reason why it would be undesirable to grant indefinite leave to remain because of public interest issues. To check you must take account of the applicants personal history, including:
o character
o conduct
o associations and employment record, for more information, see related link: Consideration of relevant points.

• The applicant must meet the knowledge of language and life in the UK requirement. For more information, see related link.

• The applicant must not fall for refusal under the general grounds for refusal, see related link.

• The applicant must not be in the UK in breach of immigration laws except for any period of overstaying:

o for 28 days or less, or
o if the application was submitted before 9 July 2012

Continuous lawful residence is broken if the applicant:

• has a gap of leave of more than six months, or
• departs the UK after their valid leave has expired.

In your case you have been outside of the UK for more than 6 months at any one time and you have not completed 10 years in the UK continuously. Therefore any application you make for indefinite leave to remain will be refused.

What you may wish to do is apply for discretionary leave to remain in the UK, this is permission to remain in the UK outside of the rules taking into account your private and family like. You would need to discuss how your life will be effected if returned to your home country as well as how it will be helped if you remain in the UK. You should also inform the home office of how you will not be a burden on the state if your application is successful. Essentially you have to persuade the home office to exercise their discretion and grant you permission to remain outside of the immigration rules because you would not qualify under the immigration rules.

If you are given discretionary leave to remain in the UK due to your exceptional circumstances then you would be granted permission to remain in the Uk for 3 years and this would need to be extended until you have completed 10 years in this category to then apply for indefinite leave to remain.

You need to apply using for FLR O which can be found at the following link:

I know the link relates to domestic workers but the form is correct.

I hope this answers your question if so kindly rate my answer positively so I can get credited for my time. If however you feel that the answer does not cover all the points raised in your question please DO NOT rate my answer negatively I will be happy to answer further question until you are satisfied with my answer.

Kind regards
UK_Lawyer, Solicitor
Satisfied Customers: 2452
Experience: I am a qualified solicitor and an expert in UK law.
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