Types of British nationality

6. British national (overseas)

Someone who was a British overseas territories citizen by connection with Hong Kong was able to register as a British national (overseas) before 1 July 1997.

British overseas territories citizens from Hong Kong who didn’t register as British nationals (overseas) and had no other nationality or citizenship on 30 June 1997 became British overseas citizens on 1 July 1997.

If you’re not already a British national (overseas), you can’t apply to become one.

Rights as a British national (overseas)

You can:

  • hold a British passport
  • get consular assistance and protection from UK diplomatic posts

However, you:

  • are subject to immigration controls and don’t have the automatic right to live or work in the UK
  • aren’t considered a UK national by the European Union (EU)

British citizenship

You may be able to register as a British citizen if you’re a British national (overseas) and meet certain conditions.