United Kingdom - flag United Kingdom - Passport & Nationality - British Citizenship by Double Descent (Grandmother)

The UK Government entered into a treaty with the United Nations some years ago ensuring equal rights for women. Included in the Treaty is the right for the child of a woman to acquire her citizenship by descent on the same terms as from the father. Accordingly, the UK passed legislation to allow claims for persons born to UK Citizen mothers who had been previously unable to claim British Nationality in the female line.  

The UK Government presently interprets the existing legislation in relation to making claims to British Nationality by descent in the female line as to be effective only for those born in the first generation by descent from a mother holding UK Citizenship. It therefore follows that those who would wish to make a claim because one of their parents would have acquired British Nationality from their mother had the law been gender equal at the time, cannot succeed. The existing stance of the UK Government therefore does not fully address gender discrimination in relation to citizenship applications and we are making attempts to remedy this.

New legislation now benefits those in the following situation:

 a) born in a foreign country (which includes South Africa, but only between 31 May 1962 and 31 December 1982. It also includes the United States and most European countries);

 b) born between 1 January 1949 and 31 December 1982; AND

 c) their grandmother (on either side of the family) was born in the UK or Northern Ireland.

The circumstances become more complicated if a) you (or your relevant parent) were born out of wedlock or b) your paternal grandfather was born in the UK.


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

Learn more about these routes to British Nationality:

WhatPassport.com 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.

WhatPassport.com is a subsidiary of Sable International.

Sable International offers a range of services relating to UK and Australian immigration. For over 20 years, we have been helping people with their UK and Australian visa applications. We assist with applications for Ancestry visas, spouse visas, work visas, Tier 1 visas, UK working holiday visas, UK dependant visas, Tier 4 visas, UK Visitor visas, sponsorship visas or UK permanent residency or indefinite leave to remain. We also specialise in UK visa extensions. If you’ve overstayed your visa, our Overstayer Status Trace service can assist to regularise your visa status.