Eligibility and fees
You’ll usually be able to apply for citizenship if you’re over 18 and have had one of the following for 12 months:
- indefinite leave to remain in the UK
- ‘settled status’ (also known as ‘indefinite leave to remain under the EU Settlement Scheme’)
- indefinite leave to enter the UK (permission to move to the UK permanently from abroad)
You will not need to wait 12 months to apply if you’re married to a British citizen.
You must also:
- prove you were in the UK exactly 5 years before the day the Home Office receives your application
- prove your knowledge of English, Welsh or Scottish Gaelic
- have passed the life in the UK test
- intend to continue living in the UK
- be of good character - read the naturalisation guidance
If you’ve been away from the UK
You may have lost your indefinite leave to remain or enter if you’ve been away from the UK for:
- more than 2 years at any time since you got it (you’ll need to apply for a Returning Resident visa)
- more than 5 years if you have settled status
- more than 4 years if you are a Swiss citizen, or the family member of a Swiss citizen, and you have settled status
This is one way to apply for British citizenship. Check if you’re eligible another way, for example if you have permanent residence.
You should have lived in the UK for at least 5 years before the date of your application.
You cannot include any time spent in the UK when you’re exempt from immigration control as a:
- member of a diplomat’s staff or household
- member of visiting armed forces
You should also not have:
- spent more than 450 days outside the UK during those 5 years
- spent more than 90 days outside the UK in the last 12 months
- broken any UK immigration laws (for example living illegally in the UK)
How much it costs
It costs £1,330 to apply.
You must also pay £19.20 to have your biometric information (fingerprints and a photo) taken. You’ll be told how to do this after you’ve applied.