What is a British passport used for?
A British passport is a document that can be used for travel and identity purposes and it is valid for 10 years.
You can use your UK Passport to prove your that you have British Citizenship, and it will show that you have the right to live, work, and study in the UK. As well as this, your passport will allow you to access UK benefits and other services should you need them.
You can also use your British passport to travel in and out of the UK without being subject to immigration controls.
Who is eligible for a British passport?
Only British nationals are eligible to get a UK passport. So South African’s can only make their application once they have gone through the citizenship application process and have been granted British Citizenship by marriage, birth, descent, or naturalization.
Having British Citizenship does not guarantee that your application will be accepted, it may still be refused if:
- you’re suspected of a serious crime and an arrest warrant has been issued
- a court order stops you from having a UK passport or restricts your travel
- you’re on bail and bail conditions mean you cannot leave the UK
- you’ve been brought back to the UK before at the government’s expense and have not repaid what you owe
- you’ve received a European Union or United Nations order which restricts your travel
If you are unsure whether you are eligible to get British passport, you can speak with one of our attorneys and they will assess your eligibility for you.
How to apply
You can apply for your first British Passport as soon as you have received your citizenship certificate. You will need to fill in the application form and submit it with all of the required documents. There are several ways that you can make the application.
- With a paper application via post
- By appointment, if applying using the 1-day premium or 1-week fast track services
If you are currently in South Africa, you will need to apply using the overseas option available on the Gov UK website.
When you make your application for your British passport you will need to provide certain information and documents.
The details and documents required include:
- Your naturalization or registration certificate
- Your parent’s details, including their names, date, and place of birth, nationality, UK passport details (if this applies), and date of marriage or civil partnership (if this applies)
- A photo for your passport, either a digital photo if applying online or a passport-sized photo if applying by post
- Confirmation of your identity from someone who has a UK passport works under one of the recognized professions and has known you for at least 2 years
- Your birth or adoption certificate (if you were born in the UK before January 1983)
- Evidence of one of your parents’ immigration status (if you were born in the UK after January 1983)
You may also be required to submit further supporting documents alongside the application.
How can IAS help?
Here at IAS, our attorneys can support you throughout the application process for your UK passport. When you are applying it is vital that all the information you provide is correct otherwise, you risk the application being delayed or refused. As well as helping you to fill in the application form, our attorneys can also professionally check applications that have already been completed to make sure that all the information is accurate before you submit it.
If any of your supporting documents are not in English or Welsh then you will need to have them translated, this is something our lawyers can also assist with.
If you are in the UK and would like help with applying then you can meet with one of our attorneys in the UK for an appointment about your application. If you are outside the UK, we can still assist you. If you are applying whilst in South Africa, our attorneys will be able to help you and answer any questions you may have about your application. They offer appointments over the phone and via Skype call to be able to do this. If you haven’t yet been granted British Citizenship then our lawyers can also help you to apply for British Citizenship.
To find out more about United Kingdom passport applications and whether you qualify for one contact us on 0333 305 3612.
Comprehensive immigration advice tailored to your circumstances and goals.
Designed to make your visa application as smooth and stress-free as possible.
Fast Track Package
Premium application service that ensures your visa application is submitted to meet your deadline.
Ensure you have the greatest chance of a successful appeal. We will represent you in any case.
The Advice Package
With our untimed Advice Session, our professional immigration lawyers will review your case and provide you with comprehensive advice, completely tailored to your needs and your situation.
The Application Package
With our Application Package, your dedicated caseworker will advise you on your application process and eligibility. Your legal advisor will then complete and submit your forms to the Home Office on your behalf.
The Fast Track Package
Our Fast-Track Application Package is a premium service for those who need to submit their application in time with their deadlines. Your case will become a top priority for our lawyers and you will benefit from our highest-quality services.
The Appeal Package
By choosing our Appeal Package, you can rely on our lawyers’ legal knowledge and experience to ensure you have the highest chance of a successful appeal. We will also fully represent you in any hearings/tribunals.
The British passport application fee varies depending on how you apply. Currently, the cost is as follows:
- £75.50 for online applications
- £85 for paper applications
You will have to pay extra if you would like a fast-track or priority service and you should also consider other costs you may incur, such as document translations if you need them.
Yes, all of the documents that you submit with the application will be returned to you. They will be posted back to you and you will receive them separately to your new passport.
You can also pay extra to be able to track the delivery of your documents.
No, if you don’t want to you don’t need to make a UK passport application after acquiring citizenship. If you prefer you can request a certificate of entitlement to prove that you have a right to live in the UK.
It costs £372 to get a certificate of entitlement if you are applying from within the UK or it will cost £388 if you are applying whilst in South Africa, you can submit an application online available on Gov UK.
You can make an application for a child’s UK passport if your child is also a British citizen. If your child is still a South African citizen then they will not be eligible. A UK passport for a child is valid for 5 years and you or another guardian will need to act as the official applicant when filling in the form.
If your child is not a British Citizen then our lawyers can advise you on the immigration options available to your child, you can book an advice session today by calling 0333 305 3612.
Some people are asked to attend an interview after they have applied for their UK passport. The interview is to prove your identity. Only some people need to attend an interview and you will be contacted after the application has been processed and can then book an interview slot.
Your passport application could take up to 6 weeks to be processed and you won’t be able to travel within this time.
The processing time may also be longer because this is your first UK passport so there may be more checks carried out than usual.