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benefits of British citizenship for American citizen

A section for posts relating to applications for Naturalisation or Registration as a British Citizen. Naturalisation

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somemightsay
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Posts: 70
Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2012 11:06 am

benefits of British citizenship for American citizen

Post by somemightsay » Fri Dec 14, 2012 12:10 am

My South African colleague applied for British citizenship so that he could travel freely throughout Europe without obtaining visas. He also claimed benefits (child trust fund) while he had ILR status. I, on the other hand, am an American citizen with ILR status and can travel freely throughout Europe. May I also claim benefits even if I don't intend to? If so, then what are the advantages of my obtaining British citizenship? If I married a British citizen and had children, would I have to naturalize into a British citizen, or would I be able to retain my American citizenship and ILR status?

vinitmanu
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Posts: 282
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Re: benefits of British citizenship for American citizen

Post by vinitmanu » Fri Dec 14, 2012 9:54 am

somemightsay wrote:My South African colleague applied for British citizenship so that he could travel freely throughout Europe without obtaining visas. He also claimed benefits (child trust fund) while he had ILR status. I, on the other hand, am an American citizen with ILR status and can travel freely throughout Europe. May I also claim benefits even if I don't intend to? If so, then what are the advantages of my obtaining British citizenship? If I married a British citizen and had children, would I have to naturalize into a British citizen, or would I be able to retain my American citizenship and ILR status?
Even if you married a British citizen you don't have to naturalise as a British citizen. However, I thought USA allowed dual citizenship.

somemightsay
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Joined: Sat Sep 29, 2012 11:06 am

Post by somemightsay » Fri Dec 14, 2012 2:27 pm

Yes, the U.S. allows dual citizenship, but if I don't plan to vote in the U.K., work for the government, or live elsewhere in Europe, then are there any advantages for me to apply for BC? What rights won't I have as an ILR holder as opposed to a British citizen?

vinitmanu
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Post by vinitmanu » Fri Dec 14, 2012 3:15 pm

somemightsay wrote:Yes, the U.S. allows dual citizenship, but if I don't plan to vote in the U.K., work for the government, or live elsewhere in Europe, then are there any advantages for me to apply for BC? What rights won't I have as an ILR holder as opposed to a British citizen?
you won't have the rights to the ones you mention above. Also, you might lose your ILR status if you stay out of the UK for more than 2 years.

aledeniz
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Post by aledeniz » Fri Dec 14, 2012 5:29 pm

somemightsay wrote:Yes, the U.S. allows dual citizenship, but if I don't plan to vote in the U.K., work for the government, or live elsewhere in Europe, then are there any advantages for me to apply for BC? What rights won't I have as an ILR holder as opposed to a British citizen?
A citizen cannot be deported (see http://www.directimmigration.co.uk/tag/deportation/).

A citizen is afforded consular protection (there may be some countries aroud the world were a British helping hand may be more useful of an American one, who knows).

If someone holding a PR/IRL are convicted of a crime, they may be debarred to apply for citizenship for 5 years in the general case (but also forever, it really depends on the crime).

But personally I asked the citizenship to get the right to vote. I doubt they would let me anywhere close a government job :lol:, but as a 7 year old taxpayer I feel I must gain the ability to vote.

Christophe
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Post by Christophe » Sat Dec 15, 2012 12:56 am

A citizen cannot be deported and may be afforded consular protection when abroad (and there could be situations in which being British could be more advantageous than being American). However, for most people these things are, happily, more a matter of academic interest than practical reality.

One of the biggest advantages of citizenship would be that it is not lost if you leave the country. ILR is (typically) lost if you cease to live in the UK or are away from the UK for 2 years or more.

As a British citizen otherwise than by descent, children born to you would generally be British citizens at birth, whether born in the UK or not.

As noted above, as a British citizen you would be entitled to vote in the UK and to hold certain government positions that are reserved for citizens (if you wanted to); you would also be liable for jury duty.

A less tangible but still very important consideration (I think) is that if you see your future, or part of it, as being in the UK then it makes sense to become a British citizen. Again as noted above, you would not need to give up your US citizenship if you naturalised as British.

It's also worth remembering that rules are changing all the time, and it's unlikely that the requirements for naturalisation will become easier in the near future, but they might well become harder.

skymoon
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Location: Oxford

Post by skymoon » Tue Dec 18, 2012 10:35 pm

British Citizenship is better than ILR. At least your future is secure. ILR can be revoked at any time.

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