Fee waiver on Citizenship Applications for below 18 years

Individuals below the age of 18 years who are eligible to apply for citizenship can request for a fee waiver if due to their financial conditions they cannot afford the fees. Information on how fee waiver applications work can be found here.

Fee waiver application can also be made by other persons on behalf of the individual is going to make the citizenship application. The changes were announced on the Statement of Changes and can find more information by clicking here. If your fee waiver application is accepted then it only means that you will not be required to pay for the fees while making your citizenship application. In neither means that your citizenship application will be accepted or will be influenced by this decision.

The fee waiver application will be considered on two factors.

(i) Whether you can credibly demonstrate that the fee cannot be afforded and
(ii) That their income is not sufficient to meet the child’s needs.

This means that the applicant and parents have the necessary funds to meet their essential living needs, but do not have sufficient funds to pay the fee. While considering the application the authorities are required to safeguard and promote the welfare of a child in the UK. This would be the primary factor while deciding the fee waiver application.

The fee waiver application should be submitted with evidences that demonstrate the financial conditions of the parents as well as their child on behalf of whom they are making the application. The application should also disclose the existence of any individual provides financial support to the child, if any but cannot afford to provide support towards the fees.

An application for fee waiver can be by anyone under the age of 18 who is eligible to register for citizenship. Multiple fee waiver applications can be made if you have more children and at least one their parents is common. The duty of proving that they cannot afford the fees lies with the parents. If you need ICS Legal to help on the matter, you can read more information on our managed legal services.

Fee waiver application in relation to citizenship are not open to adults. However if there are multiple children applying for citizenship along with the adult(s) from the same family then the authorities should take into consideration the circumstances as whole while deciding the fee waiver application. If a fee waiver has been granted, the citizenship ceremony fee that would otherwise be payable is also waived for the applicant.

If an application is decided in positive then the fee waiver is granted in whole. There is no scope for partial fee waiver or reduction in fees. However in case of multiple children applications from the same family there could be request made at the time of filing the fee waiver application to allow part fee waiver in respect of older child.

This is done to reduce the risk of older children turning 18 and losing their right to register for citizenship. There is also possibility for some individual requests to be granted and others not when multiple fee waiver applications have been made within the same family.

Previously approved fee waiver application has no influence on the subsequent ones as the family has to prove that their situation is the same when making the new application with respect to the other children.

Besides each case will be considered on its merits. If the authorities need clarification, further documents and information may be requested.

If the authorities are not satisfied that the applicant cannot afford the fees than the application for fee waiver can be rejected. Other reasons for rejection could include

(i) Not providing reliable information about their circumstances.
(ii) Intentionally disposing of the available funds.
(iii) Utilizing funds for purchasing non- essential items within their income but or spending excessively.
(iv) Having sufficient savings to pay the fee and income in excess of their essential needs which indicates they can afford the fee or
(v) Not taking reasonable steps to ensure they have sufficient funds to pay a foreseeable fee.

There is no provision for reviewing a refusal of fee waiver application as every application is decided on the basis of information and documents provided along with the application. If a fee waiver application has been rejected the only option is to make a fresh application.

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