How to Apply for a British Passport: A Step-by-Step Guide
This page caters for first time British passport applications applied for from South Africa. Therefore this caters for South Africans, in South Africa, that have a claim to a British passport.
The process of applying for a British passport is actually a process of requesting citizenship from another country. South Africans that apply for British passports are practically applying for British citizenship.
The British government has no problem with notion. Their citizens can hold multiple nationalities and it is not a factor of concern for them.
Our SA government however has demonstrated concern in this regard. So much so, they have put legislation in place to “threaten” those whose wish to secure second citizenship (other than South African). The legislation stipulates that South Africans first have to ask permission to hold second nationality before they can request citizenship.
Without asking permission from Home Affairs, the South African government has the right to renounce South African citizenship in cases of dual nationality. Under different Presidents, these rules have been applied in variations of strictness.
More information can be found on our dual nationality page.
What does Move Up do?
We deal with Her Majesties Passport Office on a daily basis. We represent South African applicants.
With the above in mind, we bring experience to the transaction. Insight into what to expect and what is standard practice.
Further to that, our representation offers the following:
- – Free Assessment (button below) – to confirm eligibility and feasibility.
- – We complete online applications on our clients behalf.
- – We provide user friendly checklists, detailing case specific documents needed.
- – Provide a dedicated caseworker to help double check documents presented.
- – Our industry knowledge and expertise comes with a full refund guarantee – we guarantee first time successful outcomes (or we don’t get paid).
Please try our free birth certificate assessment below if you have your documents on hand.Free Birth Certificate Assessment
Frequent Cases Handled by Move Up:
Applicant born in the UK
This applies to cases where the applicant was born in the UK.
To qualify under this category, not only does the applicant have to evidence that they were born in the UK but they also have to evidence that their parent (either one or both) has previously held ILR (permanent resident) status (either as a South African or as a British national).
It is important to note: Applicants (South Africans born in the UK to South African parents) do not automatically qualify for British citizenship.
Applicant Father born in the UK
Applications prior to 2012 placed emphasis on applicants eligibility only being through the legitimate line. Fortunately a change in ruling now passes British nationality through paternal birth (legitimate or illegitimate) line.
In layman terms, this now means that South Africans can claim British citizenship (and get a British passport) if their father was born in the UK. Regardless of the fact that their father was married (or not married) to their biological mother.
Applicant born before 1983 – Mother born in the UK
This caters for South Africans (born in South Africa) that have a biological mother that was born in the UK. More specifically, this particular case is only available to South Africans (applicants) that were born before 1 January 1983.
Applicant born after 1983 – Mother born in the UK
This caters for South Africans (born in South Africa) that have a biological mother that was born in the UK. More specifically, this particular case is only available to South Africans (applicants) that were born after 31 December 1982.
Applicant parent earned certificate of nationalization
Often we get South Africans calling us to say “but my parent has a British passport”. When it comes to British nationality, it is important to find out how ones parent gained that British passport.
In the event that the applicant’s parent earned their British nationality because they lived continuously in the UK for a minimum of 5 years, chances are that the applicants parent received a “Certificate of Nationalization”.
It is important to note that a “Certificate of Nationalization” is different to a “Certificate of Registration”. Emphasis in this case is on Certificate of Nationalization.
Applicants earned Certificate of Nationalization
Instead of claiming British nationality through parents earned certificate, this case makes provision for the applicant themselves who earned that certificate.
In this case, it is standard practice that the applicant has gone through the visa motions. In example, applied for entry clearance, lived continuously in the UK and eventually earned ILR (permanent resident) status. Thereafter, spent at least one more year in the UK to qualify and earn the required British certificate of nationalization.
What is unique in this case is that the applicants’ British Certificate of Registration also applies.
Applicant registered birth as British when born in Cape Town
This generally applies to cases where applicants were born between 1970-1990 and more specifically when the Cape Town British Consulate facilitated this.
At present, the Cape Town British Consulate no longer facilitates registering foreign births (ie birth that take place in South Africa) as British citizens.
If you are one of the lucky ones who has a British registered birth, even though you were born in SA, this case applies to you.
To find out more how Move Up can help, we encourage applicants to contact us.
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