Under Article 8, everyone has a right to respect for their private and family life, however this is a qualified right and the Government can interfere with this right where it is in the public interest. In order to make the Immigration Rules compliant with the ECHR, the Home Office have set out in the Rules, the limited circumstances where an applicant can remain in the UK based on their private life.

The requirements are as follows:

  • If you are aged between 18 and 24 years old then you must have lived continuously in the UK for more than half of your life.
  • If you are 25 years old or older then you must have lived in the UK continuously for 20 years.
  • If you are 18 years old or over and have lived in the UK for less than 20 years, there would be very significant obstacles to your integration into the country to which you would have to go if required to leave the UK.

Continuous residence means residence in the United Kingdom for an unbroken period. Periods outside the UK for 6 months or less will not break continuous residency.

The General Grounds for Refusal do not apply, instead you must meet the rules on suitability.

In essence, the provisions are related to a deportation order, the presence of the applicant not being conducive to the public good (criminal and danger to the UK/Article 1F), failure without reasonable excuse to comply with Home Office requirements (i.e. attend an interview), giving false information/representations or documents or failing to disclose material facts, failure to pay litigation costs awarded to the Home office and failure to pay NHS fees.

It is always possible to make an application outside the Immigration Rules. However, it is rare for such applications to be granted unless an applicant can demonstrate exceptional circumstances. Home Office case-worker’s set a very high threshold when considering cases of this type.

Successful applicants are granted periods of 2.5 years at a time and will qualify for settlement once they have lived in the UK continuously for 10 years on this route.

Experienced Immigration Lawyers

We have been helping clients solve their personal immigration problems for over 25 years. To find out if we can assist you and then to arrange an initial fixed fee consultation, contact our experienced team in either Edinburgh or Glasgow.
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