When applying for UK naturalisation, one of the key considerations will be cost and how much you will need to pay in British Citizenship fees.
In 2021, it costs £1,330 to make an application to naturalise as a British citizen. This includes the fee for the citizenship ceremony.
British citizenship fees 2021
The table below details all British citizenship fees, if you are apply for citizenship through, for example, registration.
|British Citizenship & Nationality fees||Fee from 1 December 2020|
|Naturalisation, inc citizenship ceremony fee of £80||£1,330|
|Naturalisation British overseas territory citizens||£1,000|
|Nationality registration as a British citizen – adult, inc citizenship ceremony fee of £80||£1,206|
|Nationality registration as a British citizen – child, exc citizenship ceremony fee of £80 payable if minor turns 18 during the application process||£1,012|
|The arrangement of a citizenship ceremony (including the administration of a citizenship oath and pledge at the ceremony).||£80|
|The administration of a citizenship oath, or oath and pledge where the oath, or oath and pledge, are not administered at a citizenship ceremony or by a justice of the peace.||£5|
|Nationality registration – British overseas territory citizen, British overseas citizens, British Subjects, British protected persons – adult||£901|
|Nationality registration – British overseas territory citizen, British overseas citizens, British Subjects, British protected persons – child||£810|
|Renunciation of nationality||£372|
|Certificate of entitlement – (right of abode)||£372|
|Nationality correction to certificate||£250|
|Nationality – supply of a certified copy of a notice, certificate, order or declaration||£250|
Are there other British citizenship fees you need to pay?
It’s important to note that the Home Office application fee may not be the only charge for your application.
Naturalisation applicants will also have to pay £19.20 to have their biometric information (fingerprints and a photo) taken.
The Life in the UK test also comes at a charge of £50 per test taken. If you need to resit, you will have to pay the test fee again.
Certified document translations will also be required if the original versions of your supporting documents are not in English or Welsh. This could include documentation such as your birth certificate, marriage certificate or your degree.
Since the naturalisation application is costly and extensive, most applicants also opt to take professional guidance and engage an immigration lawyer to take care of the application on their behalf.
How long do British citizenship applications take to process?
British citizenship applications typically take around 6 months. This may vary depending on the complexity of the application and service issues such as COVID restrictions delaying application processing.
Is there a premium service for British Citizenship?
When do you pay the British citizenship fee?
The naturalisation fee is payable when making your application. If the fee is not paid, the application will be invalid, and a £25 administration fee will be chargeable.
Is the citizenship fee refundable?
The application fee is not refundable or transferrable. This applies if the application is rejected or withdrawn. This makes it essential for naturalisation applicants to ensure their application is correct, complete and comprehensive, with all required supporting documentation submitted in the correct format.
Improve your prospects of a successful British citizenship application
To avoid a refused citizenship application and losing your British citizenship application fee, you will need to ensure you meet all of the eligibility requirements and that your eligibility is evidenced in the way the Home Office stipulates.
1. Good character requirement
The good character requirement applies to all naturalisation applicants over ten years of age. It is an area of growing scrutiny, with increasing numbers of applications being refused on good character grounds.
Unhelpfully for applicants, there is no single definition of ‘good character’, and each application is decided on its own facts. The Home Office issued guidance to caseworkers on the good character requirement in January 2019, which can help applicants understand the kind of factors that will be assessed, such as criminality, financial soundness, past immigration matters, and issues of deception and dishonesty. This is not, however, an exhaustive list, and caseworkers will consider an application as a whole to determine if the applicant meets the requirement.
2. Residency requirement
The residence rules are another common ground for refusal by the Home Office. There are effectively two parts to the residency requirement.
First, you have to have lived in the UK lawfully for a period of five years or more on the date you make your application, unless you are a foreign spouse of British citizens or UK settled person and are able to apply after three years of residence in the country.
Second, you cannot have been absent from the UK for more than 450 days during this five-year qualifying period, or 270 days if you are naturalising as a foreign spouse.
In addition, you must not have been overseas for more than 90 days in the 12-months immediately before the date of your application.
If your absences exceed these limits, or if you have not been resident in the UK for the minimum residence period, or are not able to evidence your qualifying residence, your application will be refused.
In some cases, it may be possible to argue compelling reasons for any extensive absences, but the applicant will need to provide substantial evidence to support their case.
3. Knowledge of English language and life
A further requirement on naturalisation applicants is the they can speak and understand English to a specific level, and that they pass a citizenship test about British life, culture and history. Importantly, this must all be evidenced in the correct way.
Unless you are a national of an exempt English-speaking country, the rules require naturalisation applicants to prove their English ability by presenting evidence of either a degree that was researched or taught in English, or by passing a listening and speaking test at B1 level at an approved IELTS test centre.
4. Providing additional information
The Home Office may contact the applicant to request further information before a decision is made on the application. Any delay or failure to provide the requested information can result in the application being refused.
Where the Home Office requests further documentation from an applicant, they will usually write to the address given in the application form to request that this be sent and provide a time frame for doing so.
Our team of specialist immigration advisers help individuals and companies on all areas of UK immigration, visas and mobility. As Home Office fees are subject to change, you are advised to check the Home Office website for the latest fees before submitting your application, or contact us for a full appraisal of the current full costs of making a naturalisation application.
British citizenship fees FAQs
How much is the UK citizenship fee 2021?
The fee is £1,330 per adult applicant. This includes the cost of the citizenship ceremony.
What documents do I need to apply for British citizenship?
You will need to provide documents proving you meet all of the naturalisation requirements, as well as documentation confirming your identity and lawful status in the UK.
How much is a British passport?
The cost of applying for a first adult British passport is £75.50, or £85.50 for a frequent traveller 50-page passport.
Last updated: 3 January 2021