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Entry Clearance For Indefinite Leave To Enter (ILE) As A Child Under 18

You can apply for entry clearance for Indefinite Leave to Enter (ILE) as a child of a British Citizen or settled person to join your parent(s) in the UK. The refusal rate is very high in cases where the UK sponsor has to establish the sole responsibility for the child as it is not easy to meet the sole responsibility requirement.

Specialist Child Visa Solicitors

Our expert team of child visa solicitors in London specialise in child visa entry clearance applications. Our specialist child visa solicitors have successfully helped thousands of clients with the child visa entry clearance applications. Our best team of child visa solicitors can provide fast, friendly, reliable and fixed fee immigration services concerning your child visa entry clearance application. Ask a question to our expert child visa solicitors for free immigration advice or submit an online request to book an appointment for detailed legal advice for your child visa entry clearance application.

Eligibility Requirements For Indefinite Leave To Enter (ILE) As A Child

Subject  to  the  requirements  of  Paragraph  297  of    the  Immigration  Rules,  indefinite leave  to  enter  the  United  Kingdom  may  be  granted  to  a  child  under  18  years  of  age  where:

  • both  parents  are  present  and  settled  here, or  are  being  admitted  on  the  same  occasion for settlement; or
  • one  parent  is  present  and  settled  in the UK and  the  other  is  being  admitted  on  the same occasion for settlement at the time  the child is seeking admission; or
  • one parent is present and settled in the UK or is being admitted on the same occasion for settlement, and the other parent is dead; or
  • one parent is present and settled in the UK or is being admitted on the same occasion for settlement, and has had sole responsibility for the child’s upbringing; or
  • one  parent  (or  a  relative)  is  present  and  settled  in the UK  or  being  admitted  for settlement, and there are serious   and   compelling   family  or  other considerations  which  make  the  child’s  exclusion  undesirable, and suitable arrangements have been made for the child’s care.

The Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) must be satisfied from the information and evidence provided that:

  • the child is related to the sponsoring parent(s) as claimed;
  • the child is under 18 years of age;
  • the   applicant   is   not   married,   is   not   a   civil   partner   or   leading   an   independent life;
  • there  is  adequate  and  appropriate  maintenance  and  accommodation  for  the child, provided by the sponsor, without recourse to public funds.

Sole Responsibility For Upbringing The Child

Where application for child entry clearance is made under paragraph 279(i)(v) of the Immigration Rules, the sponsoring parent has to show that he/she has had sole responsibility for child’s upbringing. The UK courts have defined the sole responsibility as follows:

“Sole responsibility” is a factual matter to be decided upon all the evidence. Where one parent is not involved in the child’s upbringing because he (or she) had abandoned or abdicated responsibility, the issue may arise between the remaining parent and others who have day-to-day care of the child abroad. The test is whether the parent has continuing control and direction over the child’s upbringing, including making all the important decisions in the child’s life. However, where both parents are involved in a child’s upbringing, it will be exceptional that one of them will have “sole responsibility”.

It has been further ruled by the UK courts that “the purpose of paragraph 297 is clear: it is designed to maintain or effect family unity. Under sub-paragraphs (a) to (d) of  paragraph 297(i), the child  is accompanying his parents or a parent to live in the UK or he is seeking to join them when they are already settled in the UK. The end product is that parents and child live together in the UK; only if one parent is dead will the other be able to be in the UK alone with the child. By contrast, paragraph 297(i)(e) is concerned with settlement where one parent is in the UK and the other is abroad and will remain so. Paragraph 297(i)(e) has the potential to split up a family and separate a child from one of its parent abroad who is involved in its life. It is only the requirement of “sole responsibility” which acts as a control mechanism. It would, in our view, usually  run  counter  to the policy of family unity to admit a child for settlement where the parent abroad is caring for the child and involved in its upbringing, unless the requirements of paragraph 297(i)(f) are met. This must be borne in mind when interpreting, and applying, the test of “sole responsibility”. The requirements of that latter sub-paragraph are onerous requiring “serious and compelling family or other considerations which make exclusion of the child undesirable”. Hence, the family will be split up only because the parent abroad has no involvement for the child’s upbringing (para 297(i)(e) applies) or, where there is involvement, because all the circumstances (including the child’s interests) require such a result (para 297(i)(f) applies).”

Re-Applying For Child Visa Entry Clearance After The Refusal

If your application for child visa entry clearance has been refused by the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) and you believe that the decision to refuse your application is valid and lawful and therefore cannot be challenged by way of entry clearance appeal, you have the option to re-apply for child visa. We can provide the required legal help and assistance with re-applying for child visa entry clearance after the refusal.

Adequate Maintenance Requirement

To qualify for entry clearance for Indefinite Leave to Enter (ILE) as a child of a British citizen / settled person, the applicant must show that he/she meets the adequate maintenance requirement. According to UK immigration rules, adequate maintenance requirement means that, after income tax, national insurance contributions and housing costs have been deducted, there must be available to the person or family the level of income or funds that would be available to them if the person or family was in receipt of income support.

The Upper Tribunal case of Ahmed [benefits; proof of receipt; evidence] Bangladesh [2013] UKUT 84 [IAC] directed the Home Office to evidence financial figures in all decision letters in which refusal was based on inadequate maintenance.

Therefore, decision makers considering an application for entry clearance, leave to remain, further leave to remain or indefinite leave to remain which has to meet a requirement for adequate maintenance must set out the financial position of the applicant/sponsor in all cases that fall for refusal using the following formula:

A –B ≥ C

A minus B is greater than or equal to C.


  • A is the net income (after deduction of income tax and National Insurance contributions);
  • B is housing costs (i.e. what needs to be spent on accommodation); and
  • C is the amount of Income Support an equivalent British family of that size can receive

The Immigration Rules do not specify the level of income or amount of funds sufficient for ‘adequate’ maintenance.This will be case specific and depend on the number of dependants in the familyunit. If dependants of the main applicant are going to accompany them to, or remain with them in, the UK,then sufficient resources must be available for the whole family unit to be adequately maintained, regardless of their nationality or immigration status.

Our specialist team of immigration solicitors can assess your personal circumstances including your household family members, your household net income and housing costs and advise you whether or not you satisfy the adequate maintenance requirement for your application.

Adequate Accommodation Requirement For Child Visa Entry Clearance UK

The applicant must provide specified evidence that there will be adequate accommodation, without recourse to public funds, for the family, including other family members who are not included in the application but who live in the same household, which the family own or occupy exclusively: accommodation will not be regarded as adequate if-

  1. it is, or will be, overcrowded; or
  2. it contravenes public health regulations.

How Can We Help?

Our expert team of immigration solicitors specialise in UK child visa entry clearance applications. If instructed to represent your child regarding his/her application for entry clearance for indefinite leave to enter (ILE) as a child, we will carry out all the work on your child’s application until a decision is made by the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) on your child visa entry clearance application. The immigration casework to be carried out by our expert team of immigration solicitors will include the following:

  • Assessing your child’s eligibility for child visa entry clearance by considering all your personal circumstances;
  • Advising you on the weaknesses and strengths of your child visa entry clearance application;
  • Advising you on the relevant documents to be submitted in support of your child visa entry clearance application;
  • Assessing your documents to ensure that the documentary evidence is as per requirements of the Home Office UKVI immigration Rules;
  • Completing and submitting the online application form to apply for child visa UK entry clearance by gathering all the relevant information from you;
  • Helping you with paying the child visa application fee for the application;
  • Where necessary, preparing detailed witness statement of the applicant and/or the sponsor explaining the background of their relationship and other relevant factors pertaining to the child visa entry clearance application;
  • Preparing a detailed cover letter to introduce and support your child visa entry clearance application;
  • Uploading online all the relevant supporting documents and scheduling an appointment for submission of passport and enrolment of your biometrics;
  • Liaising with the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) for a timely decision on your child visa entry clearance application.

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