On 23 September 2009 UKBA further clarified the transitional arrangements for those who already have indefinite leave to remain (ILR) or who have a pending application before earned citizenships is introduced. UKBA also clarified the circumstances under which those on HSMP and certain others can continue to apply for ILR or British citizenship under the current rules.
On 21 July 2009 the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act received Royal Assent. Sections 39-41 and 47-49 of Part 2 of the Act are the relevant sections covering earned citizenship which the Government plans to introduce on July 2011. This is six months later than was originally planned. This will give people more time to apply under the current rules.
The Government has taken note of the views put forward by the House of Commons and House of Lords. The following transitional arrangements have been agreed:
- If a migrant already has indefinite leave to remain on the date that earned citizenship is introduced they will still be considered to be a permanent resident. They can apply for UK citizenship under the current rules for the first two years after earned citizenship is introduced.
- If a migrant has a pending application for indefinite leave to remain when earned citizenship is introduced and is then granted indefinite leave the immigrant can apply for British citizenship under the current rules for the first two years after earned citizenship is introduced.
Those who entered under the previous Highly Skilled Migrant Programme (HSMP) and had a legitimate expectation that they would be able to apply for and be granted indefinite leave to remain under the Immigration Rules that were in force when they applied under HSMP will continue to have the right to apply under the previous immigration rules after earned citizenship is introduced. This only benefits those who previously came under HSMP.
It would be a good idea for those people who qualify for indefinite leave to remain or British Citizenship to apply before the new earned citizenship scheme comes into place on July 11.