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UK Refugee status and eligibility for settlement

22 March 2010

The UK Border Agency has released on its website some guidance in relation to applicants who have refugee status and their ability to qualify for settlement. Thus, the new guidance states that:

“refugees and migrants with humanitarian protection in the UK will be allowed to apply for settlement and British citizenship under the current rules if their initial five-year permission to stay here will end between August 2010 and the date when the new system of 'earned citizenship' comes into force (scheduled for July 2011).”

If you were granted refugee status or humanitarian protection between August 2005 and July 2006, and your initial five-year permission to stay will expire before earned citizenship comes into force, you will still be able to apply for settlement (also known as 'indefinite leave to remain'). You will be expected to apply no more than 28 days before your initial permission to stay expires.

However, If you have refugee status or humanitarian protection and your initial permission to stay will expire after the earned citizenship system comes into force (scheduled for July 2011), you will need to apply for 'probationary citizenship' and not indefinite leave to remain.


Migra & Co is a private immigration company, regulated by the Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC), reference number F200900038. This website is not a government website and as such, we are not linked or affiliated with the UK Visas and Immigration. We offer expert legal advice and flexible tailored solutions to both private and corporate clients to ensure that their immigration needs are met. If you wish to download or prepare a UK visa application form, you can do so free of charge by visiting the Official UKVI website.