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The process starts by carrying out automated checks of your HMRC and DWP records to try and establish how long you have lived in the UK.

Automated checks are only carried out for the last 7 years.

Tax records are only checked for the purpose of establishing residence, the amount of tax paid is not taken into account.

There is no requirement to have worked, nor paid taxes, for settled status, however, in the absence of records, you may be required to provide evidence of residence.

The form asks if you have been known by other names. This is to be able to locate your records if you got married or changed your name by deed poll, etc.
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You may enter additional names if necessary, by clicking on Add another name.

You can also enter other ways to spell your name.

The form has been updated and will ask whether you have been known by any other names right after confirming your name.

The form will then ask for your National Insurance Number. Although a NIN is not essential to apply, most people will have one if they have worked, been self-employed and/or received benefits. The NIN will be used for the automated checks.

The form has been updated and will now ask whether you have lived in the UK less than 5 years or 5 years or longer.

Outcomes

Depending on the outcome of the automated checks, the system will show a preliminary assessment on the screen:

You will be considered for settled status. This means the automated checks have shown you have been living in the UK for 5 years.

You will be considered for pre-settled status. This means the automated checks have shown you have lived in the UK for less than 5 years.

We need more evidence of your residence. This means the automated checks have shown evidence of residence for less than 5 years, but not in the last 6 months, or that no data has been found.

If you have lived in the UK for at least 5 years, you should not accept pre-settled status and offer to provide evidence, otherwise you will be given pre-settled status and will need to submit another application in the future, for settled status.

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Your options

You don't normally have to do anything if you are offered settled status, unless you think there's been a mistake and you've not lived here 5 years. In that case, you should click on I haven't been continuously resident for five years.

If you haven't lived here 5 years, go ahead and submit application for pre-settled status. Otherwise click on show I’m eligible for settled status.

You will need to upload evidence of residence. You can choose to provide evidence for either:

One day in the last six months, to get pre-settled status; or
Five years, to get settled status.


See also:

Evidence of residence
Residence criteria.