UK Ancestry Visa

If you meet the requirements of the UK Ancestry Visa, then you could also be eligible for a British Passport. There are provisions (and anomalies) in nationality law allowing a claim from a UK-born grandparent.

Requirements of the UK Ancestry Visa

The main criteria for qualifying for a UK Ancestry Visa are:

  • Any grandparent (a grandfather or a grandmother) born in the UK;
  • You are 17 or older;
  • You have a Commonwealth Passport (this includes Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Canada); AND
  • Intention to move to the UK to live and work.

There are no financial requirements to be met, no upper age limit, and you can bring over your spouse and any dependent children.

How could I qualify for British Nationality?

Having a grandparent born in the UK means that one of your parents is British. If it can be shown that this parent is "British Otherwise Than by Descent", then British Nationality can be passed from this parent to you. In other words, British Nationality passes two generations - from your UK-born grandparent to you.

British Nationality Assessment

Click here for more details on what territories are included in:

Children under the age of 18 with a UK-born grandparent or great grandparent

There are additional provisions allowing children under the age of 18 to claim a UK Ancestry Passport from a British parent who was born outside of the UK. Read here for the circumstances where Children can claim British Nationality.

How do I find out if I have a claim to British Nationality?

We suggest following our 4 STEP PROCESS, designed to simplify the complex laws of British nationality (and to avoid unnecessary and expensive application fees) to find your answer:

Step 1: Determine whether you have a Standard Route (birth in the UK before 1983, or a parent born in the UK before 1983)
Step 2: If not, complete our free Nationality Assessment
Step 3: Order a free British Passport Review
Step 4: Conduct a Status Trace

Complete our nationality assessment

To find out whether you or your children might have a claim, take a couple of moments to complete our FREE online passport assessment.

British Nationality Assessment

You qualify for a UK Ancestry Visa if you are at least 17 years old, hold a passport from a commonwealth country and one of your grandparents was born in the United Kingdom.

An extension to the Ancestry visa is available (strictly speaking, the visa is re-issued) to a candidate holding an existing and valid Ancestry visa. This occurs at the expiry of an existing Ancestry Visa and happens when you have NOT yet met the UK residency requirements for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR).

More information about the UK Ancestry Visa

Strictly speaking, this Visa is an Employment category visa. This is because the candidate must demonstrate that they are employable and should make every effort to maintain this during their stay in the UK. It is still a TEMPORARY RESIDENCY visa, but it is formally considered WORK AUTHORISATION.

The Ancestral visa entitles holders to seek employment in any field in the UK for a period of up to five (5) years. After five years, holders may be able to apply for ILR as long as they continue to meet the requirements of their visa and have not travelled outside the UK for longer than the permissible time periods. No more than 180 whole days absence are allowed in any of the five, four, three or two consecutive 12 month periods. Contractual work travel can normally be excluded from this calculation, but advice should be sought if this to be relied upon.

To read more about the specific countries that contribute the most UK Ancestry Visas issued, please see:

Click here for more information on: