How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • Go back-and-forth until satisfied
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask LawyerAk Your Own Question
LawyerAk, Solicitor
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 517
Experience:  Expert in Immigration and family law
Type Your Immigration Law Question Here...
LawyerAk is online now

I'm inquiring about a UK visa for myself (american citizen,

This answer was rated:

I'm inquiring about a UK visa for myself (american citizen, had ILR before I moved back to the US, Husband and 2 minor children are UK passport holders)
JA: What steps have you taken? Have you filed any paperwork with the UK government? What country do you live in? What is your citizenship?
Customer: No steps taken yet. No paperwork filed. I live in the US. I have US citizenship and an expired ILR from the UK.
JA: Have you talked to a lawyer about the visa?
Customer: Not yet.
JA: Anything else you want the Lawyer to know before I connect you?
Customer: I lived in the UK for 3.5 years. 05/2009 - 10/2012

Good afternoon, if you hold ILR in the U.K. you would need to apply for a returning resident visa.

Customer: replied 4 days ago.
Ok, do you happen to know what the arrival window is for a returning resident visa?

You need a Returning Resident visa to come back to live in the UK if you were previously settled (given ‘indefinite leave to enter or remain’) and you’ve been away for more than 2 years.

If you’ve been away for less than 2 years but you’ve lost your documentation, you can get a replacement BRP visa.

You may still need to apply for a visa if you’ve been asked to confirm you can travel to the UK, for example by the airline you’re travelling with.


You must:

  • plan to return to live in the UK permanently
  • have been settled in the UK before you last left
  • not have been given public funds to help you leave the UK

Please see link with guidance on returning resident visa

Customer: replied 4 days ago.
Thank you - I'm very familiar with that link. But it doesn't say what the arrival window is for a returning resident visa.
Customer: replied 4 days ago.
I actually can't find that information anywhere on the internet. If we're planning a permanent move to the UK then there are a lot of things we would need to do this side and we don't want to start any of that without knowing if I've definitely been successful in the visa application. However, we don't want to find out i've received my visa and then have, say, 4 weeks to move.

When you receive the visa you would have 28 days to enter the U.K. from date you receive the returning resident visa.

Customer: replied 3 days ago.
Ok, so a follow up question - how long do I have to stay in the UK after activating that visa before I could travel again?

As soon as you have obtained the visa you are free to travel as long as you have the intention to live in the U.K.

Customer: replied 3 days ago.
there isn't say a 90 day time that I have to stay in the UK? So I could fly over within 28 days, then fly back to the US to finalize things for our move?

The 90 days per year rule is that if planning to naturalise as British citizen you should not be outside the U.K. for 90 days.

So once you have entered the U.K. and collected brp there are no restrictions on travel.

Customer: replied 3 days ago.
Last question, in your experience, how likely am I to receive the returning resident visa with my basic situation. Family of four, 2 young daughters, Daughters and Husband all UK citizens?

I would say you are likely to receive the returning resident visa on the grounds that your children and partner are British therefore that is sufficient to continue your family life in U.K.

Customer: replied 3 days ago.
Thank you so much for your help.

Glad to be of assistance today. Kind regards

LawyerAk and other Immigration Law Specialists are ready to help you