You can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) on the basis of 10 years long residence after you have lived in the UK continuously and lawfully for 10 years. ILR 10 years long residence application is made by using application form SET (LR). The applicant for ILR 10 years long residence is required to meet the eligibility criteria as set out in paragraph 276B of the Immigration Rules. For the purposes of ILR under 10 years long residence category, the residence in the UK must be both continuous and lawful.

Contents Table

Specialist Long Residence Solicitors
Super Priority Service For Decision Within 24 Hours
Eligibility Requirements
Time spent Outside The UK
Discretion For Absences
Application By A Person With Temporary Admission
Documents For ILR 10 Years Long Residence
Family Members Of SET (LR) Applicant
2 Years Leave On 10 Years Long Residence Basis
How We Can Help?
How Much We Charge?
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Specialist Long Residence Solicitors

Our expert team of long residence solicitors specialise in ILR long residence applications. As long residence specialists lawyers, our long residence solicitors have wealth of knowledge and experience of successfully dealing with hundreds of ILR long residence applications. You can contact our expert team of long residence solicitors in London, Manchester or Birmingham for fast, friendly, reliable and affordable legal services for your ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence. The high quality of our service is self-evident from the reviews of our clients about the excellent legal services provided by our long residence solicitors. As expert long residence solicitors, we can provide super prioirty service for your SET (LR) application to be decided within 24 hours. Ask a question to our long residence solicitors for free immigration advice concerning your ILR long residence application.

Super Priority Service (Decision Within 24 Hours) For ILR - 10 Years Long Residence

As the expert immigration solicitors based in London, Manchester and Birmingham, we are registered with the Home Office, UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI) and its commercial partners UKVCAS Sopra Steria to provide Super Priority Service (SPS) for your ILR application whereby decision on your ILR application will be made by the Home Office UKVI within 24 hours of the enrolment of biometrics at a designated service centre.

Our expert immigration solicitors can prepare and submit your SET (LR) application to the Home Office, UKVI through Super Priority Service (SPS) and get decision on your ILR application within 24 hours. This way, you will not have to wait for the decision on your SET (LR) application for months (sometimes years).

Requirements For ILR On The Basis Of 10 Years Long Residence

The requirements for indefinite leave to remain on the basis of 10 years long residence are laid down in paragraph 276B of the Immigration Rules. The requirements for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence include the following:

Completion Of 10 Years Lawful And Continuous Residence In The UK

For ILR application based on 10 years long residence, the applicant must have completed 10 years of continuous and lawful residence in the UK. An application for ILR on this basis can be made to the Home Office UKVI 28 days prior to the completion of 10 years long residence in the UK. Your 10-year qualifying period starts from either:

  • when you arrived in the UK with a visa;
  • when you were given permission to stay in the UK.

Also, for the purposes of 10 years long residence application, the 10 years period does not necessarily have to be last 10 years and it can be any continuous period of 10 years completed at any time in the past.

Not Falling For Refusal On Public Interest And Undesirability Grounds

Having regard to the public interest there should be no reasons why it would be undesirable for the applicant to be given indefinite leave to remain on the ground of long residence, taking into account his:

  • age; and
  • strength of connections in the United Kingdom; and
  • personal history, including character, conduct, associations and employment record; and
  • domestic circumstances; and
  • compassionate circumstances; and
  • any representations received on the person’s behalf.

Not Falling For Refusal Under General Grounds For Refusal

General grounds for refusal are set in part 9 of the Immigration Rules. An applicant applying for ILR under 10 years long residence should not fall for refusal on general grounds for refusal as given in part 9 of the Immigration Rules.

Knowledge Of Life In The UK And English Language

Unless the applicant for ILR under 10 years long residence is under the age of 18 or over the age of 65, he/she has to pass the Life in the UK test and English test in at level B1 in listening and speaking only. A person who is over 18 and under 65 may seek exemption from meeting the Life in the UK test and English language requirement if he/she is unable to meet these requirements due to medical reasons.

Not Currently Being In Breach Of Immigration Laws Except Where Paragraph 39E Applies

The applicant must not be currently in the UK in breach of immigration laws. However, an applicant who has not overstayed for more than 14 days can still make an application for ILR as an overstayer by virtue of paragraph 39E of the Immigration Rules.

Previous Periods Of Overstaying (Gap) Between Periods Of Leave

According to paragraph 276B(V), any previous period of overstaying (gap) between periods of leave will also be disregarded where –

  • the previous application was made before 24 November 2016 and within 28 days of the expiry of leave; or
  • the further application was made on or after 24 November 2016 and paragraph 39E of the Immigration Rules applied.

Time spent Outside The UK And ILR 10 Years Long Residence

Continuous residence is not considered broken if the applicant:

  • is absent from the UK for 6 months or less at any one time
  • had existing leave to enter or remain when they left and when they returned – this can include leave gained at port when returning to the UK as a non-visa national
  • departed the UK before 24 November 2016, but after the expiry of their leave to remain, and applied for fresh entry clearance within 28 days of that previous leave expiring, and returned to the UK within 6 months

If the applicant had existing leave to enter or remain when they left and returned to the UK, the existing leave does not have to be in the same category on departure and return.

Discretion For Absences In Excess Of 540 Days In Total Or 180 Day At A Time

If the applicant has been absent from the UK for more than 6 months in one period or more than 18 months in total, the application would normally be refused. However, it may be appropriate to exercise discretion over excess absences in compelling or compassionate circumstances, for example where the applicant was prevented from returning to the UK through unavoidable circumstances.

Things for the Home Office caseworker to consider when assessing if the absence was compelling or compassionate are:

For all cases

The Home Office caseworker should consider whether the applicant returned to the UK within a reasonable time once he was able to do so

For the single absence of over 180 days

The Home Office caseworker should consider:

  • how much of the absence was due to compelling circumstances and whether the applicant returned to the UK as soon as they were able to do so;
  • the reasons for the absence

For overall absences exceeding 540 days in the 10 year period

The Home Office caseworker should consider:

  • whether the long absence (or absences) that pushed the applicant over the limit happened towards the start or end of the 10 year residence period, and how soon they will be able to meet that requirement
  • if the absences were towards the start of that period, the person may be able to meet the requirements in the near future, and so could be expected to apply when they meet the requirements
  • however, if the absences were recent, the person will not qualify for a long time, and so Home Office case worker should consider whether there are particularly compelling circumstances

All of these factors must be considered together when determining whether it is reasonable to exercise discretion.

Application By A Person With Temporary Admission

According to the Home Office UKVI guidance on on 10 years long residence, if an applicant with temporary admission meets all the other requirements of rule 276B, discretion can be exercised by Border Force to grant them 6 months’ code 1 outside the Immigration Rules, so they can make an application in the UK on the basis of 10 years long residence.

ILR 10 Years Long Residence Documents

The supporting documents are key to succeeding in an application for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence. Supprting documents for ILR application may vary from case to case depending on the individual circumstances of the applicant. Generally, the following documents may be required for an application for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence:

  • All passports covering the relevant 10 years qualifying period of long residence;
  • BRP card of the applicant;
  • Life in the UK test of the applicant if the applicant is over the age of 18 and under the age of 65;
  • Relevant document to satisfy the English language proficency at level B1 in listening and speaking only which could include English test certificate or degree level academic qualification or evidence of being national of a majority English speaking country;
  • Any evidence of private and family life established in the UK;
  • Any other evidence which may be relevant to address any particular issue in the long residence application including e.g. one of the previous passport is missing, the applicant exceeded permitted number of days absent from the UK; previous gaps in between the periods of leave to remain applications, etc;
  • Any documents or information which is relevant to argue why the Home Office UKVI should exercise discretion to grant the application where the reliance is being made on discretion of the Home Office UKVI in approving the long residence application.

Our expert team of immigration solicitors can provide the specific list of documents upon assessing all the relevant circumstances of the applicant and after identifying issues, if any, in the long residence application.

Family Members Of A Person Applying For ILR On The Basis Of 10 Years Long Residence

Your family members (‘dependants’) can apply for  ILR separately on the basis of 10 years long residence using form SET (LR) if they have also completed 10 years long residence in the UK. You cannot include your partner or child in your SET (LR) application. Your partner can apply for leave to remain in the UK as the partner of a settled person if they are not eligible to apply SET (LR) separately and your application for settlement [SET(LR)] is successful. They may be able to include their children in their application. Any children born in the UK can apply for registration as British Citizen as soon as either parent of the child has been granted ILR in the UK.

Further Leave To Remain For 2 Years On 10 Years Long Residence Basis

A person who has completed 10 years continuous and lawful residence in the UK can apply for further leave to remain for 2 years if he is unable to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain due to non-custodial criminal conviction which is less than 24 months old or due to his inability to pass the English Test and/or Life in the UK test. Application for further leave to remain based on 10 years long residence is made using application form FLR (LR).

How We Can Help With Your Application For ILR On The Basis Of 10 Years Long Residence?

If instructed to represent you regarding your SET (LR) application on the basis of 10 years long residence, the casework carried out by our expert team of immigration solicitors will include the following:

  • We will assess your eligibility for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence by fully considering all your personal circumstances including your past immigration history, any previous gaps in between periods of leave, your absences from the UK, any issues surrounding good character requirement etc.
  • We will advise you on all the relevant requirements for ILR 10 years long residence, ;
  • We will discuss your immigration case in detail with you and advise you about the weaknesses and strengths of your immigration case;
  • We will advise you about the documentary evidence to be submitted in support of your SET(LR) application;
  • We will assess the documentary evidence to be submitted in support of your SET(LR) application and discuss the same with you;
  • We will complete the SET (LR) form online, submit the same online, help you pay the application fee online, help you choose either standard service or Super Priority Service for your application and book your appointment with the UKVCAS application centre for the enrolment of your biometrics;
  • We will prepare a cover letter to introduce and support your SET(LR) application;
  • We will upload all the supporting documents online on UKVCAS online portal;
  • We will liaise with the Home Office, UKVI for a timely decision on your SET(LR) application;
  • We will protect your interests while your application is pending with the Home Office and respond to any enquiries made by the Home Office UKVI in relation to your pending SET (LR) application;
  • Where necessary,  we will make further representations or provide further documentary evidence in support of the pending SET(LR) application;
  • We will do all the follow up work until decision is reached on your SET (LR) application.

Our Fixed Fee For ILR 10 Years Long Residence - SET(LR) Application

Our fees for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence are given in the fee table below: 

Our Service Our Fee
One-off immigration consultation/advice for ILR 10 years long residence £80 (inclusive of VAT)
One-Off Application Checking Service / Documents Assessment £240 (inclusive of VAT)
Full service for ILR 10 years long residence to  cover all the work until decision by the Home Office UKVI From £800 + VAT To £1,500 + VAT

The agreed fixed fee will depend on the complexity of your ILR application and the volume of casework involved in the application. In addition to our fixed fee for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence, the applicant will also have to pay the Home office UKVI fees for the ILR application.

Useful Online Resources

FAQs - ILR 10 Years Long Residence

How can I apply for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence?

You can apply for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence by using online application form SET (LR).

Can I apply for ILR after 9 years residence in the UK?

No, you can only apply for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence 28 days before completing 10 years long residence. Your application for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence may be refused by the Home Office if at the time of decision on your ILR application you have not completed the qualifying period for ILR.

If you are short by few months in completion of 10 years long residence, it may be possible to extend your leave temporarily by virtue of Section 3C through an appropriate immigration application in your given circumstances so that you are able to complete your 10 years long residence in the UK to be eligible for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence in the UK.

When can I apply for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence?

You can apply for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence within 28 days before completing 10 years long residence in the UK whether applying through standard service or through Super Priority Service (decision within 24 hours).

Once you have built up a period of 10 years’ continuous lawful residence, there is no limit on the length of time afterwards when you can apply for ILR on the basis of 10 years continuous and lawful residence in the UK. This means you could leave the UK, re-enter on any lawful basis, and apply for ILR from within the UK based on a 10 year period of continuous lawful residence you built up in the past. There is also nothing to prevent a person relying on a 10 year period that they may have relied on in a previous application or grant.

What is continuous residence for the purposes of ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence?

Continuous residence is defined in paragraph 276A of the Immigration Rules. Continuous residence means residence in the UK for an unbroken period i.e. without gaps. For the purposes of long residence, a period is not considered broken if the applicant:

  • was absent from the UK for six months or less at any one time, and
  • had existing leave to enter or remain upon their departure and return.

You can leave the UK during the continuous residence for up to:

  • 180 days at a time;
  • 540 days in total.

You cannot count time spent in:

  • a prison, young offender institution or secure hospital
  • Ireland, the Isle of Man or Channel Islands

What is lawful residence for the purposes of ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence?

Lawful residence is defined in paragraph 276A of the Immigration Rules as a period of continuous residence in which the applicant had one of the following:

  • existing leave to enter or remain
  • temporary admission within section 11 of the 1971 Immigration Act where leave to enter or remain is subsequently granted
  • an exemption from immigration control, including where an exemption ceases to apply if it is immediately followed by a grant of leave to enter or remain.

What events break continuous residence for the purposes of 10 years long residence ILR?

Continuous residence is considered to be broken if the applicant has:

  • been absent from the UK for a period of more than six months (180 days) at any one time, or is absent from the UK for a shorter period but does not have valid leave to enter the UK on their return, or valid leave to remain on their departure from the UK
  • been removed or deported from the UK, or has left the UK following refusal of leave to enter or remain
  • left the UK before 24 November 2016 with no valid leave to remain on their departure from the UK, and failed to apply for entry clearance within 28 days of their previous leave expiring (even if they returned to the UK within 6 months)
  • been convicted of an offence and been given a custodial sentence, or ordered to be detained in an institution other than a prison, such as a hospital or young offenders institute, not including suspended sentences
  • spent a total of 18 months (540 days) outside the UK throughout the whole 10 year period.

How can I challenge the refusal of ILR 10 years long residence application?

Appeal against refusal of SET (LR) application:

If your ILR long residence application is refused by the Home Office, UKVI and you believe that the refusal decision is unlawful, you can challenge the refusal of your SET (LR) application by filing an Appeal Against Refusal Of SET(LR) 10 Years Long Residence Application with the First Tier Tribunal (FTT) within 14 days of receiving the refusal letter.

Pre Action Protocol (PAP) & Judicial Review (JR) against refusal of SET(LR) application:

If you have not been given an in-country right to appeal agaisnt the refusal of your SET(LR) application, you can still challenge the refusal of your application by way of Pre Action protocol (PAP) and Judicial Review (JR) against the Home Office UKVI decision to refuse your SET (LR) application.

Can I re-apply for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence after the refusal?

If your application for ILR 10 years long residence - SET(LR) application has been refused by the Home Office, UKVI and you believe that the decision to refuse your application is valid and lawful and therefore cannot be challenged successfully by way of appeal, you may have the option to re-apply for ILR 10 years long residence within 14 days of your section 3C leave ending. We can provide the required legal help and assistance with re-applying for your ILR 10 years long residence through our Super Priority Service.

Can I apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) after 10 years?

You can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in the UK if you've been in the UK legally for 10 continuous years (known as 'long residence').

How early can I apply for ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence?

You can apply for ILR 28 days before you complete 10 years continuous and lawful residence in the UK starting from your date of very first entry in the UK.

Can Home Office UKVI exercise discretion for absences exceeding 540 days in total or 180 days at a time?

If the applicant has been absent from the UK for more than 6 months in one period or more than 18 months in total, the application would normally be refused. However, it may be appropriate to exercise discretion over excess absences in compelling or compassionate circumstances, for example where the applicant was prevented from returning to the UK through unavoidable circumstances.

Things for the Home Office caseworker to consider when assessing if the absence was compelling or compassionate are:

For all cases

The Home Office caseworker should consider whether the applicant returned to the UK within a reasonable time once he was able to do so

For the single absence of over 180 days

The Home Office caseworker should consider:

  • how much of the absence was due to compelling circumstances and whether the applicant returned to the UK as soon as they were able to do so;
  • the reasons for the absence

For overall absences exceeding 540 days in the 10 year period

The Home Office caseworker should consider:

  • whether the long absence (or absences) that pushed the applicant over the limit happened towards the start or end of the 10 year residence period, and how soon they will be able to meet that requirement
  • if the absences were towards the start of that period, the person may be able to meet the requirements in the near future, and so could be expected to apply when they meet the requirements
  • however, if the absences were recent, the person will not qualify for a long time, and so Home Office case worker should consider whether there are particularly compelling circumstances

All of these factors must be considered together when determining whether it is reasonable to exercise discretion.

Does any overstaying rule out ILR on the basis of 10 years long residence?

According to paragraph 276B(V), any previous period of overstaying (gap) between periods of leave will be disregarded where –

  • the previous application was made before 24 November 2016 and within 28 days of the expiry of leave; or
  • the further application was made on or after 24 November 2016 and paragraph 39E of the Immigration Rules applied.

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