Commonwealth nationals over the age of 17 who have at least one grandparent who was born in the UK may be eligible to apply for a UK Ancestry visa.
If you are intending to apply for a UK Ancestry visa, you must demonstrate that you are able and planning to work in the UK and that you have sufficient funds to maintain yourself and any dependants without recourse to public funds.
You must apply for an Ancestry visa from outside the UK, from the country in which you are usually resident.
A UK Ancestry visa is initially issued for 5 years. At the end of this period, you can eitherapply to extend your visa, or, if you satisfy the requirements, apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK (otherwise known as Permanent Residence).
You can apply to bring your dependent family members (i.e. your spouse and any dependent children who are under the age of 18 at the time of application) with you, but you will need to demonstrate that you have sufficient funds to support them.
Gherson has extensive experience in assisting with applications for UK Ancestry visas. For further information, please contact us.
Solicitor in our General Immigration team, specialising in private client immigration
What are the requirements to apply for an Ancestry visa?
In order to apply for an Ancestry visa you need to demonstrate that at least one of your grandparents was born:
- in the UK (including the Isle of Man and the Channel Islands);
- on a British-registered ship or aircraft
- before 31 March 1922 in what is now Ireland.
Can I study or work in the UK on an Ancestry visa?
Yes. The application for an Ancestry visa requires you to demonstrate that you are able and intending to work. You are also able to study in the UK on an Ancestry visa.
Can I apply for an Ancestry visa if my step-parents were British?
No. You cannot claim ancestry through step-parents. You may be able to apply under this route if either you or your parent was adopted by a British parent or you were born outside marriage in the UK. This will require further documentary evidence.
I am not a Commonwealth national but my grandparent was British, can I apply for an Ancestry visa?
No. It is a requirement that in order to be eligible to apply for a UK Ancestry visa, you must be a national of a Commonwealth country.