Initial Application – 7 Years Child Residence Route
You and your child can make an initial application for leave to remain under 7 years child residnece route if your child under the age of 18 has lived in the UK for 7 years continuously. The 7 years child residence route application is made on the basis of private life and the best interests of the child who has lived in the UK for at least 7 years continuously. The application on the basis of 7 years residence of the child is made using application form FLR (FP).
You cannot make an initial application under 7 years child residence route from outside the UK. There is no 5-year route to settlement for those who have leave to remain under the 7 years child residence route.
Paragraph 276ADE(1)(iv) requires that the applicant must be under the age of 18 years and must have lived continuously in the UK for at least 7 years (discounting any period of imprisonment) and it should not be reasonable to expect the child to leave the UK.
In summary, the applicant should meet the following requirements to succeed in his/her application based on 7 years child residence:
- The applicant should meet the suitability requirement as evisaged under paragraph 276ADE(1)(i), and the application of the applicant must not fall for refusal under S-LTR: Suitability;
- The applicant (the child) must be under the age of 18 years;
- The applicant must have lived in the UK for at least 7 years (discounting any period of imprisonment);
- It should not be reasonable to expect the applicant (child) to leave the UK.
The outcome of such application is a dependent on many factors including:
- the best interests of the child;
- the immigration status of the parents of the child;
- the financial circumstances of the parents of the child which would affect the well-being of the child in their country of origin;
- the circumstances in the country to which the child and the child’s parents can be required to go and live in;
- any medical conditions of the child or of the parents of the child;
- any special needs of the child including any medical and educational needs of the child;
- any special circumstances showing exceptionally strong private life established by the child in the UK which will be completely lost resulting in compromising the well-being of the child;
- any psychological effect on the life of the child, etc.
The requirements in paragraph 276ADE(1)(iv) for leave to remain as a child reflect the duty in section 55 of the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009 to have regard to the need to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, by which we mean their best interests, as reflected in case law, in particular, ZH (Tanzania)  UKSC 4.
The Home Office, UKVI must have regard to the best interests of the child as a primary consideration. They must fully consider the child’s best interests.
The Home Office UKVI must assess under paragraph 276ADE(1)(iv):
- firstly, whether refusal of the application will mean that the child will have to leave the UK or is likely to have to do so:
- if so, secondly, whether, taking into account their best interests as a primary consideration, it is reasonable to expect the child to leave the UK- in doing so the Home Office UKVI must carefully consider all the information provided by the applicant, together with any other relevant information of which the Home Office UKVI is made aware.
In accordance with the findings in the case of AB Jamaica (Secretary of State for the Home Department v AB (Jamaica) & Anor  EWCA Civ 661), consideration of whether it is reasonable to expect a child to leave the UK must be undertaken by the Home Office UKVI regardless of whether the child is actually expected to leave the UK. The starting point is that the Home Office UKVI would not normally expect a qualifying child to leave the UK. It is normally in a child’s best interest for the whole family to remain together, which means if the child is not expected to leave, then the parent or parents or primary carer of the child will also not be expected to leave the UK.
In the caselaw of KO and Others 2018 UKSC53, with particular reference to the case of NS (Sri Lanka), the Supreme Court found that “reasonableness” is to be considered in the real-world context in which the child finds themselves. The parents’ immigration status is a relevant fact to establish that context. The determination sets out that if a child’s parents are both expected to leave the UK, the child is normally expected to leave with them, unless there is evidence that that it would not be reasonable.
This assessment must take into account the child’s best interests as a primary consideration. The Home Office UKVI must carefully consider all the relevant points raised in the application and carefully assess any evidence provided. All relevant factors should be assessed in the round.
The successful applicant will be granted leave to remain for 30 months under the 10 years route to settlement whereby an application for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) can be made after 10 years of continuous residence in the UK under this visa category.
If your application for leave to remain on the basis of 7 years child residence has been refused by the Home Office, UKVI and you believe that the decision to refuse your application is valid and lawful and therefore cannot be challenged successfully by way of appeal, you have the option to re-apply for leave to remain on the basis of 7 years child residence. We can provide the required legal help and assistance with re-applying for leave to remain on the basis of 7 years child residence.
As your legal representatives, our child visa solicitors can represent you in your application for leave to remain on the basis of 7 years child residence and carry out all the work on your leave to remain application until a decision is received from the Home Office UKVI. If instructed to represent you regarding your leave to remain application on the basis of 7 years child residence, the immigration casework to be carried out by our long residence solicitors will include the following:
- Assessing your eligibility for leave to remain on the basis of 7 years child residence by considering all your personal circumstances;
- Assessing the important factors which can strengthen the application for leave to remain on the basis of 7 years child residence;
- Advising you on the weaknesses and strengths of your leave to remain application on the basis of 7 years child residence;
- Advising you on the relevant documents to be submitted in support of your leave to remain application on the basis of 7 years child residence;
- Assessing your documents to ensure that the documentary evidence is as per requirements of the Home Office UKVI immigration Rules;
- Completing and submitting the online application form to apply for leave to remain on the basis of 7 years child residence by gathering all the relevant information from you;
- Helping you with paying the application fee and the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) online;
- Booking your appointment with the application centre for verification of documents and enrolment of biometrics;
- Where necessary, preparing detailed witness statement of the applicant and other witnesses explaining the long residence in the UK and other relevant factors pertaining to the leave to remain application;
- Preparing a detailed cover letter to introduce and support your application;
- Uploading online all the relevant supporting documents before you attend your appointment for enrolment of your biometrics;
- Liaising with the Home Office UKVI for a timely decision on your application.
Unless your matter is very complicated, our fixed fees for leave to remain on the basis of 7 years child residence are as given in the fee table below:
|Our Service||Our Fee|
|One-off immigration consultation/advice for leave to remain on the basis of 7 years child residence||£80 (inclusive of VAT)|
|One-Off leave to remain Application Checking Service / Documents Assessment||£240 (inclusive of VAT)|
|Full service for leave to remain on the basis of 7 years child residence to cover all the work until decision by the Home Office UKVI||From £2,000 + VAT To £3,000 + VAT|
The agreed fixed fee will depend on the complexity of the application and the volume of casework involved in the 7 years child residence application. In addition to our fixed fee for leave to remain application on the basis of 7 years child residence, the applicant will also have to pay the Home office UKVI fees for the application.