Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

If you are already in the UK you can make various applications to apply for leave to remain here, either on a temporary or permanent basis. Push Legal Services are experts in immigration law and have the experience and expertise to assist you with your application for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR).


If you are a foreign national who is subject to immigration control but have lawfully lived in the UK for a certain length of time, you may be able to apply for permission to settle here permanently. This is known as Settlement or Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR).

Given that a successful application will grant you permanent residency in the UK, there are strict criteria set out under the Immigration Rules that you must satisfy. Your right to apply for settlement will depend on your current immigration category and whether you continue to meet the criteria for that category.

You can qualify for ILR through various routes, most commonly where you are in the UK with permission as

  • A partner
  • Family member
  • Certain workers
  • Continuous and long-term lawful residence
  • Those with ancestry ties

The dependent child of a British citizen or a person who is settled in the UK may be given immediate permission to remain indefinitely, and refugees who are resettled in the UK through the Gateway Protection Programme will automatically be granted immediate permission

To make an application you must already be in the UK and in many cases will need to demonstrate knowledge of language and life, although certain applicants are exempt from this requirement including children (under 18), parents, grandparents and other dependent relatives of people present and settled in the UK, or those resident in the UK as a refugee. There are a number of ways you can demonstrate you can demonstrate knowledge of language and life:

  1. Passing the Life in the UK test
  2. having a recognised qualification in English,
  3. having a degree that was taught or researched in English or
  4. Being a national of an English-speaking country.

*As part of your application for ILR you will need to enrol your fingerprints and facial image (known as biometric information) and obtain a biometric residence permit. This will confirm your immigration status and entitlements.

Further Leave to Remain

If you do not yet qualify for ILR you may be able to extend your existing visa temporarily. This is known as Further Leave to Remain. If you came here as a visitor, in most cases you cannot extend your permission to stay beyond 6 months although in limited circumstances you may be able to switch to a different immigration category. You must also apply to extend your stay before your existing permission expires as an overstayed will risk an order for enforced removal.

Returning Residents

Your settled status may be lost if you have lived abroad for a continuous period of 2 years or more.




Frequently Asked Questions – Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR)

  • I am applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), do I need to sit the Life in the UK Test?

    Yes, you will need to sit the Life in the UK test as part of your application for citizenship or settlement if you are between the ages of 18 and 65. The test is a typical exam that has been put together to test your knowledge of British traditions and customs.

    Test details

    Pass Mark: 75%

    Fee: Fee amount payable on the day and you must pay the fee for every attempt at the test you make, although you may take it as many times as you need to.

    If you would like any further information on how to prepare for the Life in the UK test then contact one of our experienced immigration lawyers who would be happy to help with your application.

  • I am applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), is my Life in the UK Test certificate enough?

    No, unfortunately passing the Life in the UK test is not sufficient on its own to qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK. You must also satisfy a number of other requirements including, as of October 2013, passing a speaking and listening qualification in English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL qualification).

  • I have some unspent convictions, will this affect my Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) application?

    It is highly likely that any unspent convictions will affect your application for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), under the suitability requirements, although this does depend on the type of conviction and the individual circumstances. If the conviction is spent then there is still a chance that this could affect your ILR application, again, this will depend on the type of conviction.

For further information about how we can represent you in your Further and Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK matter or to discuss your specific case please call us on 0333 0124 253 or email us at


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