• Long Residence Ten (10) Years
  • Long Residence Twenty (20) Years
  • Human Rights
  • Discretionary Leave

If you have resided in the United Kingdom for 10 continuous years, you may be eligible to apply for Indefinite Leave to remain on the basis of 10 years long residence.  It is important to get advise on what constitutes continuous lawful residence.  Speak to one of our experienced solicitors who will be able to assist you with such applications. 


This section explains the Long Residency requirements that need to be satisfied in order to apply for indefinite leave to remain on the basis of long residence. This capacity has been designed for those who have a combination of 20 years lawful and/or unlawful stay. Such period should not have been broken and must be continuous residence with no serious countervailing factors.

Under the provisions of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act (NIA) 2002, which came into effect in April 2003, there is no right of appeal against refusal for those seeking leave to enter or remain under concessionary arrangements. As a consequence the Long Residence Concession was brought within the scope of the immigration rules from 1 April 2003.

An application can be made to the Home Office on the grounds of a person’s Human Rights. Most applications which fall under this heading are on the basis of Article 3 and Article 8 rights. Article 3 rights are predominantly engaged when dealing with Asylum claims and Article 8 Rights are a person’s right to Family and Private life.
This applies to individuals who have

  • Lived continuously in the UK for at least 20 years (discounting any period of imprisonment); or
  • Is under the age of 18 years and has lived continuously in the UK for at least 7 years (discounting any period of imprisonment)
  • Is aged 18 years or above and under 25 years and has spent at least half of his life residing continuously in the UK (discounting any period of imprisonment)
  • Is aged 18 years or above, has lived continuously in the UK for less than 20 years (discounting any period of imprisonment) but has no ties (including social, cultural or family) with the country to which he would have to go if required to leave the UK.


What is Discretionary Leave? If the Home Office does not recognise you as a refugee or a person who qualifies for humanitarian protection, the Home Office may give you another type of temporary permission to stay in the UK. This permission is called 'discretionary leave to remain'. How long you are allowed to stay will depend on your circumstances, but it is unlikely to be more than two and a half years initially.


The Home Office will only give you discretionary leave to remain in limited circumstances. If you apply to renew it when it expires, the Home Office will review your circumstances before deciding whether to give you further permission to stay. You will not be able to apply for permanent residence until you have lived in the UK for at least six years (or 10 years in some cases).


To extend your residence permit or apply for permanent residence, you will need to complete the relevant application form with supporting documents and representations.