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We recommend seeking legal advice for applications that are very complex, especially those involving non EEA family members, particularly if they have previously been refused a family permit. Legal advice is also recommended in the following situations:
  • Nationality applications that rely on discretion, such as when the allowed amount of absences is exceeded
  • MN1 registration of children born abroad
  • People with fairly serious criminal convictions, restraining orders, etc. against them and repeat offenders, or whose family members/children fall into these categories
  • People who have breached the immigration rules by living or working in the UK illegally
  • People who need detailed assistance filling in the forms or need their documentation and evidence assessed prior to submission
  • Applicants relying on retained rights of residence, such as those where the family member has divorced the EEA national or divorce proceedings are underway
  • Applications based on derivative rights of residence (Zambrano, Texeira, Chen cases).
  • Applications under the EUSS where the EU national is a child under 18.
With citizenship and children registration applications, a consultation with a lawyer will set you back a small fraction of the application fee and could make all the difference between being accepted or a rejection and loss of the fee.

Issues with late birth registrations and birth certificates

We are seeing a lot of refusals where birth certificates show the birth was registered long after the child was actually born, if your birth or your family member's was registered late, you may need to provide a DNA test to prove the relationship. The Home Office cannot specifically ask you to do it, but you can provide one. If you are affected by this, you may wish to seek legal advice.

Please note that documents other than birth certificates, such as family documents, may not be accepted. As above, you may wish to seek legal advice before you make an application.


In general, lawyers offer three levels of service:
  1. full representation;
  2. a document check; or
  3. a consultation.
Consultations start from £100 for an hour, and this may well be all you need to clarify the documents you need to send and what sections of the form you need to complete. Most refusals happen because people send the wrong documents or misunderstand the rules.

If you need legal advice but can't afford a lawyer, please get in touch with us on admin@ukcen.com, and we may be able to refer you to pro-bono legal advice. This will be subject to a means test.

Please note that there are no pro-bono services for British citizenship (naturalisation), as there is no requirement to be British for any practical purposes.

The details of the immigration lawyers on the forum are here: Legal team.