Family life in the UK with a Child: Complete Guide to 7- year Immigration Route

Introduction to Family life in the UK

Under Family life in the UK  7- year immigration route, parents who have a genuine and subsisting parental responsibility and relationship with a child who is also in the United Kingdom, and who has British citizenship or has lived in the UK for a continuous period of at least 7 years, can apply for a settlement in the UK through this route.

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What is on this Page?

  • Introduction to Family life in the UK
  • Family Life in the UK 7- year Route
  • Genuine and subsisting parental relationship
  • 7 or more continuous years
Family Life in the UK 7- year Route

Under the UK’s Immigration Law the Family life in the UK route can also be used by the parents who have a genuine and subsisting relationship with a child who is not a British citizen but the child has lived in the UK continuously for at least 7 years immediately before the submission of the application.

The applicants/parents must satisfy the Home Office that, the relationship is genuine and subsisting and most importantly it is not reasonable and in the best interest of the child to leave the UK.

 The Home Office would like to hear all the obstacles such a child would face if he must leave the United Kingdom. It is important for the parents when they are using this category and preparing the application that they must list all obstacles and explain in detail the social, educational, medical and other impediments to the child on relocation outside the UK due to the reason that parents cannot stay in the UK.  Parents must know that under the Laws the primary consideration for the Home Office is the best interest of the child.

family unsplash Family life in the UK with a Child: Complete Guide to 7- year Immigration Route
Family life in the UK

Genuine and subsisting parental relationship

A relationship will be considered as genuine and subsisting where the applicant and child have lived or living together, sees each other regularly or the applicant has relevant court orders which allow access to the child. The relationship between the applicant and the child could be following

  • Biological
  • Adopted
  • Stepchild
  • Legal guardianship

Once the relationship is established as a genuine and subsisting, the next hurdle for the applicant is to prove that it would be unreasonable for the child to leave the UK. As stated above the Applicant must state all obstacles and impediments faced by such child.

7 or more continuous years

Finally, the applicant has to prove that the child has lived in the UK for more than 7 years continuously and that it will be unreasonable to expect the child to leave the United Kingdom and live in another country. The factors which are generally considered by the Home Office are following;

  • Significant risk to the health of the child, if removed from the UK.
  • The dependency of the child on parents.
  • The ability of the child to integrate into life in a country where parents will be sent.
  • Whether the child can speak, read and write in the language of the country where parents will be sent.
  • Cultural, social and family ties with the country where parents will be sent.
  • Whether the child has attended school in that country.
  • Country-specific risks, for example, war, genocide and persecution.
  • Any other specific factors.
  • Any case-specific exceptional factors.

In practice, we have witnessed many applications failed or refused purely on the fact that the parents or their legal representative failed to provide a comprehensive statement of issues and corroborating evidence to substantiate their claim under this category. Family life in the UK with a child is a complex legal matter. It is advisable to always seek legal advice.

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