Tier 1 (General)
This section explains whether and how you can apply for permission to settle permanently in the UK (known as 'indefinite leave to remain') if you are currently here under Tier 1 (General) of the points-based system.
The information in this section is based on Part 6A (paragraph 245CD) and Appendix A of the Immigration Rules, which you can find on the right side of this page. The Immigration Rules are subject to change, and you must meet all the requirements of the rules that are in place at the time when you apply for settlement.
This section is not for migrants who are covered by the terms of the HSMP Forum judicial review judgments. For more information, see the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme pages.
Can you apply for settlement?
To be able to apply for settlement, you must meet 5 requirements.
1. You must currently be in the UK under Tier 1 (General).
2. You must have spent a continuous residence period of 5 years here in any combination of the following immigration categories:
- Tier 1 (General)
- Highly Skilled Migrant Programme
- work permit holder
- self-employed lawyer
- writer, composer or artist
- Tier 2 (General)
- Tier 2 (Minister of religion)
- Tier 2 (Sportsperson)
- Tier 2 (Intra company transfer), if your permission was granted under the Immigration Rules in place before 6 April 2010
3. During the continuous residence period, you cannot be outside the UK for more than 180 days in any 12 consecutive months. Absences must be for a reason that relates to the reason for your stay in the UK, or for a serious or compelling reason such as serious illness. Your employer must confirm in writing the reason for your absence from the UK if it was related to your work. You must confirm in writing the reason for the absence if it was related to your business or self-employment or if it was for a serious or compelling reason.
4. Time spent in the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man may be included in the continuous period, as long as you were given permission to stay in any of the following categories:
. Tier 1(General);
. Highly Skilled Migrant Programme;
. work permit holder in an occupation for which a work permit would have been granted in the UK;
. self-employed lawyer;
. writer, composer or artist;
. Tier 2 (General) as long as it was in an occupation that you would have been given permission to stay, as a Tier 2 (General) migrant, in the UK for;
. Tier 2 (Sportsperson);
. Tier 2 (Minister of Religion); or
. Tier 2 (Intra company transfer) as long as you were given permission to stay before 6 April 2010.
Your most recent permission to stay (also known as leave) must have been given in the UK as a Tier 1 (General) migrant.
5. You must have sufficient English language ability and knowledge of life in the UK, unless you are under 18 years old or over 65 years old when you apply. You can find more information in the Knowledge of language and life in the UK section.
6. You must pass a points-based assessment. To find out how many points you must score in the assessment, and how you can score points, see the Scoring points for settlement applications page.
7. You must not fall for refusal under the general grounds for refusal in Part 9 of the Immigration Rules. If you applied on or before 12 December 2012, you must have no unspent convictions.
How can you apply for settlement?
You should apply using the SET(O) application form. For more information and to download the application form, see the SET(O) page.
Can your dependants apply for settlement?
Your partner and children might be able to apply for settlement as your dependants, at the same time as you make your application. See the Settlement for dependants page.