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Gaining British Citizenship After Renouncing It

Under the UN Human rights act, everyone has the right to be a citizen of one country. It doesn't matter what you've done; your government is not allowed to take your citizenship away.

But sometimes, it won't be the government that takes away our British citizenship; it will be us. Once you've gotten rid of it, how can you get it back?

Dual Citizenship

Many countries across the world will not allow dual citizenship, or at least, they will only allow dual citizenship under specific circumstances, under which you do not qualify. Therefore, for you to have become a citizen of that country, you will have had to renounce your British citizenship.

Perhaps you had been working there for several years and fell in love with the culture, but now, you wish to return home. Or maybe, you fell in love and got married to a foreigner. But that relationship fell apart, and there's nothing left for you in their country.

How To Apply

To be able to get your British citizenship back, you will need to visit the government website, or a UK embassy and get an RS1 form. Within this form, you'll have to answer many questions about yourself, why you renounced your citizenship, and why you want it back. By law, you need to answer each of the questions with 100% honesty. Remember that you can only reapply for British citizenship once. If you renounce it again, getting it back is going to be more difficult.

Criteria For Regaining Your British Passport After Renouncing It

To regain your British citizenship, you'll need to meet the following criteria:

Must be over 18: You'll need to be over the age of 18. The government views anyone under this age as a child in the eyes of the law. Therefore, they are not mature enough to make decisions of which country to be a citizen of.

Sound Mind: You need to be of "sound mind." People who suffer from certain mental illnesses are not going to have a clear idea of what they're doing and the consequences of doing so.

Good Character: Will need to be of "good character". The government wants to be confident that when you return to the UK, you're not going to commit any crimes, or be a danger to the society.

In addition, you need to obtain a letter from the country of which you are currently a citizen of. This letter will contain all the information about when you became a citizen, as well as how you became one whether you have done a "citizenship test" or became one through marriage. You can get this letter from several types of places, including embassies, government offices. It will be worth looking into how you can obtain one from your current country.


Anyone who was born or naturalised in Britain will be able to regain their British citizenship. However, other people with connections to the UK will be able to as well. If your father or grandfather, or your spouse's father or grandfather were born or naturalised in the UK, you would be entitled to regaining your British citizenship. But no matter which of the above are British, you can only regain your British citizenship once.

What If None Of The Above Apply To You?

Some may not have been born or naturalised in the UK, but have had British citizenship in the past and wish to get it back again. Others will have renounced it twice, but want to go for the third time. If that's the case, you will not be entitled to it. However, you can still apply.

Should you fall into this category, it will be up to the immigration office as to whether or not you should be allowed back in. There are several factors they will consider including your skills, and your character before deciding if you should be allowed to be a British Citizen again. Feel free to contact experienced immigration solicitors to help you to find the right approach for regaining your British Citizenship.

What Other Reasons Could Make You Denounce Your UK Citizenship?

The rules about regaining citizenship that we have spoken about will only apply to people who have renounced their citizenship because they were unable to have dual citizenship. But what about people who renounced for other reasons?

Dislike Of The UK

If you renounced your citizenship because you "hate Britain" or something along those lines, you would not automatically be entitled to regaining it. However, the British Immigration office gets to decide whether you can or can't regain it. So, you will need to prove to them that you are worthy and deserving of being a British citizen again.

Illegal Reasons

Another reason why some people have renounced their British citizenship is so they can fight in terrorist organisations such as ISIS.

People who have renounced it, for this reason, are highly unlikely to be able to regain it. They won't be entitled to it, and it's unlikely the immigration office would want them to come back into the country… ever.

Some believe this is justified as terrorists are bad people that our country would be better off without. But others will argue that by giving them British citizenship; they will be able to stand on trial in our courts and get the punishment they deserve.

What If My Application Didn’t Get Approved?

But what if you've tried to reapply, but your application did not get approved? We understand that this can be very frustrating.

Unfortunately, your only option now will be to do a "citizenship test", like any other immigrant. To be eligible for this test, you will need to have lived in the UK for at least 12 months under a "permanent residency".

This test will consist of questions about British culture and history, many of which you should know the answer to.


Renouncing your British citizenship will usually only be done when you wish to be a citizen of another country that doesn't allow dual citizenship. If done, for this reason, you should be entitled to one regain. However, if you renounce for another reason or you want to go for a second regain that will be up to the immigration office to decide.

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