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Absences for settlement
In terms of absences when applying for settlement / indefinite leave to remain, no more than 180 days’ absences are allowed in a consecutive 12-month period.
You must only include whole days in this calculation. Part day absences, for example, less than 24 hours, are not counted. Therefore, if the applicant had a single absence during the 12 month period and arrived in the UK on day 181, the period would not exceed 180 days.
PBS and Appendix W dependant partners
You must not include any absence from the UK during periods of leave granted under the Rules in place before 11 January 2018 towards the 180 days allowable absences. For example, if a dependant partner’s qualifying period includes initial Page 10 of 22 Published for Home Office staff on 4 June 2020
leave granted from 1 February 2015 to 31 January 2018, and an extension granted from 1 February 2018 to 31 January 2020, you must not count any absences before 1 February 2018.
Dependant children are not subject to limits on absences.
Calculating the specified continuous period
Applicants can submit a settlement application up to 28 days before they would reach the end of the specified period.
You must calculate the relevant qualifying period by counting backward from whichever of the following is most beneficial to the applicant:
- the date of application
- the date of decision
- any date up to 28 days after the date of application
UK Ancestry applicants have different requirements covering application dates, see: UK Ancestry.
Transitional Arrangements – rolling 12 month period
For settlement applications made from 11 January 2018, you must consider absences from the UK on a rolling basis, rather than in separate consecutive 12- month periods. If the applicant’s qualifying period includes leave granted before this date, any absences during that leave will be considered under the previous rules – in separate 12-month periods ending on the date of application.
The application date is 30 June 2020. The applicant’s continuous period includes the following grants of leave:
- one grant of leave from 1 July 2015 to 28 July 2018 – any absences during this grant of leave will be considered in separate 12-month periods, ending on 30 June each year
- one grant of leave from 29 July 2018 to 30 June 2020 – any absences during this grant of leave will be considered on a rolling basis: you must not include any absences from the previous grant of leave when you assess this
Absences must be for a reason consistent with the original purpose of entry to the UK, or for a serious or compelling reason, in the following categories:
- representative of an overseas business
- domestic workers in private households
Page 11 of 22 Published for Home Office staff on 4 June 2020
And in the following sub categories of the points-based system:
- Tier 2 (General)
- Tier 2 (Minister of religion)
- Tier 2 (Sportsperson)
- Tier 5 (Temporary worker – International Agreement) (private servants in
diplomatic households granted under rules in place before 6 April 2012 only) The applicant must provide evidence as explained below.
For the categories below, there is no requirement to give a reason for absences if they do not exceed 180 days in a consecutive 12 month period:
- Tier 1 (Exceptional talent)
- Tier 1 (Entrepreneur)
- Tier 1 (Investor)
- UK ancestry
- Retired person of independent means
- Points-Based System dependants
- Appendix W dependants