Can l lose my permanent residence status UK?
Permanent Residence (which is also known as Indefinite Leave to Remain) means that a person can live and work in the UK for an indefinite period of time once they have been granted this immigration status.
There are many ways someone can receive this status, and we consult clients on a weekly basis to discuss their path to permanent residence in the UK. However, at the same time, permanent residence in the UK can be taken away subject to certain scenarios and situations. It is also very common for clients applying for permanent residence in the UK to also ask our legal team the question, can l lose my permanent residence status UK?
An EU/EEA National with settled status ( permanent residence/ indefinite leave to enter or remain), under the EU settlement scheme, can be a way for up to 5 years from the UK consecutively without losing such status, whereas if such a person has pre-settled status, that status can be lost if the person is away from the UK for more than two consecutive years. Furthermore, with pre-settled status, the period of ‘ continuous residence( in the hope of getting settled status after a residence of 5 years), is reset to 0 if the pre-settled holder spends over six months abroad in any 12 month period.
A non-EU/EEA National who has permanent residence will lose that status if remaining outside the UK for more than two years consecutively.
There may be good reasons for having stayed out of the UK for more than the permitted period, and since the Home Office have a discretion they can at times exercise favourably, much would therefore depend on the reasons for the absences.
Any other reasons why permanent residence or settled status can be lost?
A deportation order against a foreign criminal can result in the loss of permanent residence or settled status. Opposing the deportation order on human rights grounds can be dealt with however during the appeal process in the Asylum and immigration tribunal.
Permanent residence / settled status can also be lost if the Home Office considers the status was obtained fraudulently, for example by using fake documents to show continuous ten years lawful residence, or by acting in a fraudulent manner during the course of the person’s immigration journey in the UK such as taking a required English language test via a proxy, under-declaring tax payments to the HM RC, or over declaring salary to the Home Office to score points during that immigration journey, these matters coming to light after the grant of permanent residence or settled status.
What about permanent residence obtained following a previous marriage/ civil partnership, or a relationship as unmarried partners to a British citizen or a permanent resident of the UK?
If a person has obtained permanent residence due to marriage / civil partnership after a five year temporary period in this category under the immigration rules, the Home Office will not revoke the grant of such status if there is an allegation by the other spouse or civil partner that the relationship has broken down, divorce proceedings have commenced or concluded in a decree absolute, or that the other party only married for immigration purposes and for no other reason. Once permanent residence has been obtained, it’s too late for these arguments to be made by the aggrieved spouse or civil partner. The same applies to those unmarried partners who have obtained permanent residence after a relationship of 5 years.
Learn more about the Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) Services
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