October 28, 2021

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More South Africans can qualify for British Nationality under new Law Changes

2 min read
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The New Plan for Immigration Policy Statement will make significant Nationality Law changes. 

Breytenbachs highlight some of the Nationality Law Changes that you can expect within the next weeks. 

Nationality Law Changes in the Pipeline 

Provisions for mothers

Mothers who could previously have citizenship of the United Kingdom and Colonies (CUKC) status could not pass on their British Citizenship to their children. Only fathers are able to. Children of CUKC fathers who had the right of abode in the United Kingdom became British Citizens. Children of CUKC mothers were unable to acquire the right of abode in the United Kingdom and therefore, unable to acquire any form of British Citizenship. The good news is that the new Nationality law changes will provide that mothers with CUKC status will now be able to pass on that status to the next generation. 

Unmarried fathers or Fathers of Illegitimate Children 

Fathers who were not married to the mother of a minor child, or fathers who had illegitimate children, was not able to pass on their British nationality to their children. Only since 1 July 2006, illegitimate children whose fathers were born in the United Kingdom were considered British citizens. However, there were no provisions made for fathers with British Overseas Citizenship Status. The good news is that the new Nationality Law changes will enable fathers with British Overseas Citizenship status to pass on this status to their children. 

Discretionary Route for Adults 

Section 3 of the British Nationality Act currently provides that minor children born anywhere can be registered as British Citizens at the discretion of the Secretary of State. Changes under the new Nationality law propose that there should also be a discretionary registration route for Adults. 

These are only a few of the proposed Nationality Law changes which might come into effect soon!

How Breytenbachs can help you 

British nationality laws can be very complicated and confusing. Fortunately, Breytenbachs have a team of experts specialising in British Nationality. They will be able to make a status trace application for you and advise what claim you have to British nationality if any. 

Do not delay. Do a trace on your British nationality claims while all of these laws are still applicable. Please email us at [email protected] or visit our website

Please note that the information in this article does not constitute professional advice. It is provided for general information purposes without any warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied.