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British Ancestry visa

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Commonwealth nationals who have a grandparent who was born in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man may enter the UK for a period of five years on a UK ancestry visa. This ancestry visa will open up the entire job market to you and will not carry the restrictions as a UK work permit. Please note that you will have to prove your relationship, and this may require spending a lot of time hunting for old marriage certificates, birth certificates, etc. See below to find out what documents are needed.

The main criteria are that you are able to support yourself without access to public funds and are willing and able to work. It is advantageous, but not necessary, to have a firm offer of employment in the UK.

After five years continuous stay in the UK on an Ancestry visa you may apply for permanent residency as long as you still meet the requirements for the Ancestry visa and you have spent five years in employment in the UK without a break.

If you need any assistance, contact us.

Documents required

You should include all the documents you can to show that you qualify for entry to the UK through UK Ancestry. This should include:

  • your full birth certificate
  • your marriage certificate, if you are married, and
  • the full birth certificates of the parent and grandparent through whose ancestry you are making your application.

You will also need the marriage certificates of your parents and grandparents, and legal adoption papers if you or your parents are adopted.

You must apply for your visa in the country of which you are a national or where you legally live.