Can you claim British Nationality?

Getting a British passport might be easier than you think. Thanks to the UK's historical laws and agreements with former territories, you may qualify for British nationality depending on where you, your parents and grandparents were born. 


You could qualify for a British Passport if:

  • Born to a parent (a father or mother) who was born in the UK before 1983;
  • Born before 1983 to a parent who was born after 1949 – as long as that parent a) was a British Citizen, or b) had a parent born in the UK; OR
  • Born after 1948, and your parents were married before 1949 and your paternal grandfather (your dad’s dad) was born in the UK.

There are hundreds of other ways to qualify. As a general rule, if you were born in a country that is different to either parent or any of your grandparents, or you have a connection back to the UK, Ireland or a former British Territory, then you might have a claim.

Expert UK immigration and nationality advice

We are the world’s leading experts in UK immigration and nationality. For over 22 years, we have been helping thousands of people navigate the complex path to British citizenship.

Some claims to British nationality are relatively straightforward and can be completed quickly if you meet the above requirements. Other claims can be extremely complex and can only be determined by researching old nationality laws.

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.

Iceland is a European island country located in the North Atlantic Ocean. It has a population of about 320,000 and a total area of 103,000 km2 (39,769 sq mi). Its capital and largest city is Reykjavík, whose surrounding area is home to some two-thirds of the national population. Located on the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, Iceland is volcanically and geologically active on a large scale; this defines the landscape. The interior mainly consists of a plateau characterised by sand fields, mountains and glaciers, while many big glacial rivers flow to the sea through the lowlands. Warmed by the Gulf Stream, Iceland has a temperate climate relative to its latitude and provides a habitable environment and nature.

According to Landnámabók, the settlement of Iceland began in AD 874 when the Norwegian chieftain Ingólfur Arnarson became the first permanent Norwegian settler on the island. Others had visited the island earlier and stayed over winter. Over the next centuries, people of Nordic and Celtic origin settled in Iceland. Until the 20th century, the Icelandic population relied largely on fisheries and agriculture, and was from 1262 to 1918 a part of the Norwegian, and later the Danish monarchies. In the 20th century, Iceland's economy and welfare system developed quickly, and in recent decades the nation has implemented free trade in the European Economic Area, diversifying from fishing to new economic fields in services, finance and various industries. Iceland is a free market economy with low taxes compared with other OECD countries. The country maintains a Nordic welfare system providing universal health care and post-secondary education for its citizens. Most Icelanders are descendants of Norwegians who came from Western Norway, but some of them are descendants of other Scandinavians and Celts. Icelandic language has much in common with the Faroese language and the West Norwegian language variant, Nynorsk.

Icelandic culture is based on the nation’s Norse heritage and its status as a developed and technologically advanced society. The country's cultural heritage includes traditional Icelandic cuisine, the nation’s poetry, and the medieval Icelandic Sagas. In recent years, Iceland has been one of the wealthiest and most developed nations in the world. In 2007, it was ranked as the most developed country in the world by the United Nations' Human Development Index and the fourth most productive country per capita. In 2008, however, the nation’s banking system systematically failed, causing significant economic contraction and political unrest that led to early parliamentary elections making Jóhanna Sigurðardóttir the country's Prime Minister.

Ask Philip Gamble whether you (or your children) have a claim to British nationality.

Learn more about these routes to British Nationality: is a specialist UK Nationality and British Citizenship site offering an online search and assessment. Claims to hold a British Passport can be complex and the site offers a quick, simple search to give you the answers. While many people qualify for the UK Ancestry Visa based on holding a Commonwealth passport with a UK born grandmother or grandfather, we have found that if you have a grandparent born in the UK, or if your mother is British or your father is British, then there are several scenarios where you can claim British Nationality and the right to hold a British Passport. This stems from Britain’s collection of British Colonies, British Protectorates and British Protected States in the middle of last century and the Nationality rules concerning what are now the countries of the Commonwealth.