United Kingdom - flag United Kingdom - Passport & Nationality - British Overseas Citizen (BOC) - Marriage before 1949

This solution - known as British Overseas Citizenship (or BOC) - arises from an anomaly in the British Nationality Act of 1948.

The 1948 Act gave Citizenship of the UK & Colonies (or CUKC) status to those people connected to Australia and Canada if they did not become citizens of a Commonwealth country on 1 January 1949. The anomaly arises because the law of these two countries relies on a woman claiming citizenship through marriage to reside in either of these two countries before 1949 (and not all did so. The solution relies on the following set of circumstances to a woman:

 - born before 1949;

 - not born in a British Crown Dominion;

 - married to a Canadian or Australian man before 1949; AND

 - not resident in Australia or Canada on 1 January 1949.

Where this woman has the Right of Abode through a UK-born grandparent, their status would have been reclassified as a full British citizen on 1 January 1983.


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.