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Thomas, Lawyer
Category: UK Law
Satisfied Customers: 7612
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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Im married to a British Citizen and I applied for British

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I'm married to a British Citizen and I applied for British Settlement in May 2011 from the US (where we were residing previously) and was granted in June 2011 valid till September 2013. I moved to the UK in August 2011 and am now currently residing here. I'm not quite sure what step I need to take now. Do I need to renew the settlement visa? Do I take the Life Test first? When can I apply for British Citizenship?

Will you remain married until your visa expires?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi Tom,


Yes. I'll be married. We've been married for 11 years. My wife was born in the UK and is a British citizen.


Thanks for your patience.

You will have to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ie. settlement) before you visa expires. You should not apply for this any earlier then 28 days before you current visa expires.

You will see from the following link that this is confirmed and also it provides links to the form you should completion together with it’s associated guidance notes:-

You will have to demonstrate knowledge of English and language and life in the UK. The following link is provided on the page:-

You appear to be an English speaker from the excellent way that you have drafted your question. Therefore you will have to pass the Life In The Uk test:

If you click on the “Life in the UK” option under “More Information” at the bottom of the page on the above link you will see guidance on how you can study and arrange to take the test.

Once you have obtained indefinite leave to remain you are free to naturalise once you have reached 3 years in the UK provided that you meet the requirements on the following page:-

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Kind regards,

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Hi Tom,


Thanks very much for the prompt response.


I also forgot to mention that I'm a Canadian Citizen.



I just wanted some more clarification on applying for ILR. My understanding is that Settlement is the same as ILR? I'm currently already on a Spousal Settlement Visa ( I believe the exact phrase written on my passport is "SETTLEMENT SPOUSE/CP(KOL REQ)"


So will I still need to apply for Settlement/ILR again?


Also, is the Life in the UK test required before I apply for ILR?


Sorry for the barrage of questions. I'm just trying to understand the difference between the Settlement Visa I currently have and what I'll be applying for again.






Hi Fawad,

Yes, you will need to apply for ILR. You do not have this yet and must get it in order to naturalise. You currently hold a spouse visa.

You will have to pass the life in the UK test.

Please rate my answer.

Kind regards.

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