If you have accumulated at least 20 years of residence in the UK which includes periods of unlawful stay, you may be eligible to apply for Leave to Remain in the UK based on your Private Life. Paragraph 276ADE(1) of the Immigration Rules takes into account the time you have spent in the UK and your connections here.
Example of our successful client:
The client initially entered the UK on a Visitor Visa and overstayed. In addition, he had used different identities in the UK which made proving his continuous residence rather difficult. Furthermore, he kept barely any documentation from his earlier years in the UK. He worked for cash in hand to support himself. We were very resourceful in assisting the client to gather a plethora of strong evidence and presented compelling legal arguments to support his application. The client received Leave to Remain promptly, without any further questions from the Home Office.
If you would like to discuss your case with our team please get in touch.
Applying for a visa on the basis of Private Life
Evidence required for the 20 years long residence visa:
√ Should provide evidence of your residence in the UK throughout these years
X Do not have to show that you have been previously living in the UK on a lawful basis (eg, if you had overstayed expired visa or entered the UK illegally)
X Do not have to fulfil English language requirements or income requirements
What if the application is successful?
If your application is successful, you would be granted Discretionary Leave to Remain for 2.5 years, on a 10-year route towards Settlement. You may be eligible for Indefinite Leave to Remain by the 10th year of being on this Visa.
What are the conditions of your Visa
This Discretionary Leave will normally be subject to a condition of no access to public funds, unless you can provide evidence that you are entitled to the funds because you are destitute.
When to extend the Visa
You should apply for another 30 months’ leave, no more than 28 days before your current visa expires.
Unlawful stays in the UK under 20 years of residence
If you have had an unlawful stay in the UK but have not accumulated 20 years of residence here, you may still qualify for Leave to Remain based on your Private Life if you fulfil one of the following requirements:
- You are under 18 years old, and have lived continuously in the UK for at least 7 years, and it would not be reasonable to expect you to leave the UK; or
- You are aged between 18 to 25, and have spent at least half of your life living continuously in the UK; or
- You are aged 18 years old and above, have lived continuously in the UK for less than 20 years, but there would be very significant obstacles to your integration into the proposed country to which he would have to go if required to leave the UK.
Am I allowed to add my family members to the application?
You may add qualifying family members to your visa application. For example, if you are applying as a partner with children, you can all apply on the same application.
What does living ‘continuously’ mean?
A ‘continuous’ residence means living in the UK for an unbroken period. You:
√ Can be absent from the UK for a period of maximum 6 months at any one time, provided that you have an existing limited leave to enter or remain upon your departure and return.
X Any time spent in prison. Nevertheless, time before and after that imprisonment can be added to make the full amount of time.
How do I show my UK ‘residence’ for the application?
Besides passports or travel documents covering the relevant period, you also have to show yearly evidence of residence in the UK from official or independent sources.
How do I meet the alternative ‘significant obstacles’ requirement?
This is a very high standard of proof, you will need to show that leaving the UK would lead to very serious hardship for you. The Home Office will consider if you will be able to integrate in your home country or the country they propose your return to. You bear the burden of proof that you will have ‘significant obstacles’ to that integration, such as risks of being prosecuted or discrimination because of your sexual or political orientation or faith. The decision-maker will consider all the relevant factors:
- Cultural background
- Length of time spent in the country of return
- Family, friends and social network
- Faith, political or sexual orientation or sexual identity
What if I cannot afford the private life visa application fee?
There is an online fee waiver request form which you may fill in if you:
- Do not have a place to live and you cannot afford one
- Have a place to live but cannot afford your essential living costs like food or heating
- Have a very low income and paying the fee would harm your child’s wellbeing
How do I apply for this Private Life visa?
The application can be made online on the Home Office website.
QC Immigration has an exceptional success rate in cases with very complicated circumstances and immigration history. Contact us today to discuss the best strategy for presenting your Private Life application.