Travelling outside of the United Kingdom
Indefinite Leave to Remain is a form of settlement that allows an individual to remain living in the UK for an unlimited time period, completely free of immigration rules.
When it comes to travelling, Indefinite Leave to Remain holders should be cautious about the length of time they travel outside of the UK for. Unlike British citizens, who can travel freely outside of the UK with no time limit, Indefinite Leave to Remain holders may face restrictions.
This is not to say that those settled in the UK under Indefinite Leave to Remain should refrain from travelling, they should just consider the time scale they anticipate being away from the country at any one time.
For more information on travelling with Indefinite Leave to Remain, call our friendly team of advisors at Birmingham Immigration Lawyer on 0121 667 6530 for immediate assistance.
Where Can I Travel With UK ILR
Travelling with Indefinite Leave to Remain
If you have been granted Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK, you are considered a person of settled status and are no longer under immigration control and at the helm of immigration rules.
You are permitted to travel outside of the United Kingdom at any time, however, you should be aware that in order to keep your Indefinite Leave to Remain valid, you must return to the UK within 2 years. If you spend any longer than 2 years outside of the UK at one time, your Indefinite Leave to Remain will automatically expire and you will no longer be considered a person with settled status.
Returning to the United Kingdom after being away for anytime less than 2 years will essentially restart the clock and your Indefinite Leave to Remain status will remain valid.
When leaving the UK, you should ensure that you take your Biometric Residence Permit with you, as you may be refused re-entry into the UK without it.
What happens if my Indefinite Leave to Remain is no longer valid?
If you do remain outside of the UK for more than 2 years at once, you Indefinite Leave to Remain will no be invalid. In some cases, you may be able to reinstate your settled status by applying for a Returning Resident visa.
The Returning Resident visa will mean that you will be granted Indefinite Leave to Remain once more and you can continue to live in the UK. In order to apply for a Returning Resident visa, you must:
- Have held Indefinite Leave to Remain previously
- Not have had any financial support from the Home Office to leave the UK
- Be able to prove that you have strong ties to the UK
- Provide evidence as to why you left the UK for more than 2 years
- Prove that you plan to make the UK your place of permanent residence
You cannot apply to be a returning resident if you lose your settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS).
Travelling outside of the UK with British Citizenship
If you have previously held Indefinite Leave to Remain and have since applied for British citizenship, it is likely that you will now hold a full British passport.
Once you have been granted British citizenship, you will remain a British citizen for life and this cannot be taken away from you. With your British passport, you are free to travel outside of the UK for as long as you wish, with no pressure to return in a specified time limit. Once you have become a full British citizen, your immigration status will remain protected.
For many, being granted ILR status is a stepping stone for applying for British citizenship. Being a British citizen comes with many more benefits than ILR status; including its non-stringent regulations of travelling outside of the UK.
Can my Indefinite Leave to Remain be revoked?
There are many reasons why the Home Office may revoke ILR. Besides it expiring due to extended absence from the UK, it can also be revoked for the following reasons:
- If you are liable for deportation but cannot be removed from the UK for legal reasons
- If you have obtained leave to remain through deception
- If you were granted ILR as a refugee, but you have now ceased to be a person of refugee status
If you are a Swiss citizen with settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS), your Indefinite Leave will lapse if you stay outside the UK for 4 years or more in a row.
What if I have no documents to prove my ILR status?
If you believe that you have been granted ILR status but were not given any documentation to prove it, you may be able to apply to have a ‘No Time Limit’ stamp added to a Biometric Residence Permit.
You can apply for ‘No Time Limit’ if you:
- Have a previous passport with an NTL that has been lost, stolen or has expired
- Have Indefinite Leave to Remain or Indefinite Leave to Enter but you have no documents to confirm this
- Have legally changed your identity since being granted ILR status and wish to have a Biometric Residence Permit to confirm this
How can Birmingham Immigration Lawyer help?
We understand that immigration law can seem daunting, but our team are experts in the field and are ready and waiting to help you with your query.
From applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain or wanting to apply to become a British citizen, our team can help with this and everything else in between. No query is too big or small for our lawyers at Birmingham Immigration Lawyer.
For more information on how we can help, call our friendly team of advisors at Birmingham Immigration Lawyer on 0121 667 6530 for immediate assistance.
Last modified on October 27th, 2023 at 9:30 am
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