Settled status, is not enough evidence of residence for the last 3 or 5 years, as the criteria to obtain it is different, and it can be based on an earlier period of residence and not necessariy the last 5 years.

For that reason, the Home Office requires additional evidence of residence sent with your application.

The same principle would apply to a PR card with an issue date less than 5 years ago (or 3 if married to a British spouse), if you are applying with it and without settled status, as noted here: PR, ILR or settled status requirement

The online AN form produces a checklist at the end of the form, where you are asked to send certain documents, including evidence of residence.

Applications with settled status or a recently issued PR card if you haven't been granted settled status yet

Residence evidence for the last 3 or 5 years, as per AN guidance, should be provided.
If you are using a PR card to apply because you haven't been granted settled status, if your qualifying period for PR was some time ago, but your PR card was issued in the last 5 years, there is no need to provide proof of residence again for the years you used for PR as a qualified person, for example, if you relied on 2004-2009 for PR, evidence is only needed for the last 3 or 5 years (depending on whether you are applying on the basis of marriage to a British citizen or not).

Settled status is not backdated, even if it was granted on the basis of an earlier period of residence, and an earlier period other than the last 5 years would only be considered if the applicant has not been living in the UK continuously for the last 5 years. This does not affect the date when it is granted.

Old ILR (other than settled status) or a PR card issued over 3 or 5 years ago, if you haven't got settled status

It is recommended that you submit one item of evidence for each year since the date when ILR was granted or the date of issue of your PR card.

Although it is perfectly possible to apply with ILR issued decades ago, such as in the '70s and '80s (provided you have the old passports or residence documents with stamps or Home Office letter), you will be required to send evidence of ongoing residence since then, which may prove difficult. If you are unable to obtain the evidence, you may wish to apply for settled status and use that to apply for citizenship.

The relevant date for this purpose is the issue date printed on the PR card, not the date when PR status was acquired according to the Home Office decision letter.

Evidence of residence
  • Your passports covering the 3 or 5 year period
AND
  • Documentary evidence that indicates presence in the UK during the relevant 3 or 5 years. This can be in the form of letters from employers, educational establishments or other Government Departments. A sample of these documents, at least one from each of the 3 or 5 years, should be submitted.
  • Continued presence in the country can be shown by enclosing lists of attended appointments from GPs, dentist, physiotherapist, dental hygienist and hospital consultant (i.e. hospital appointments).
  • Your children's school attendance records and letters confirming you drop them off and pick them up.
  • Bank and credit card statements showing physical transactions made in the UK.
  • A P60 from an employer would be equivalent to a letter from an employer and Government Department letters could include letters you have received from the DWP, HMRC, DVLA, or any other Government Department.
Although the Home Office prefers official documents from government departments, if you are unable to provide them, or the other items on the list above, you can send anything that has your name, address and a date on it.

You may want to explain in your cover letter and/or additional information section of the form, why you are unable to provide their preferred evidence.

There is no requirement to provide proof of address, just list your addresses over the last 5 years in the relevant section of the AN form. You need to provide evidence of residence, but not at a specific addresss.

You don't need to send tenancy agreements, they only prove you signed a lease, they are not evidence of ongoing residence.

In cases where the caseworker doesn't think enough evidence of residence has been provided, they would contact the applicant, asking for it.

Because EEA nationals don't get their passports stamped in and out of the UK, the Home Office requires the additional evidence of residence.

It is very important to send the requested evidence before the deadline given by the caseworker, to avoid a refusal.

If you are unable to provide additional evidence, you should write back as soon as possible, explaining the situation and try to provide whatever you may have.