What happens after you receive refugee status?

Legal Updates

After receiving your refugee status, it can be confusing to know where you can access support, now that you are no longer seeking asylum. For instance, what do you do about how to get housing, social care, benefits, work, and bring family here?

This short blog outlines a number of resources that you can use to get started.

Accessing support 

Rainbow Migration has created a useful guide which outlines how you can access mental health support, housing, benefits, education, training and employment following a positive Home Office decision. 

You can read this guide here.

You can also contact your local Citizens Advice Bureau for advice after receiving your refugee status. They have created an information sheet detailing how you can get housing, and opening a bank account, working and getting a National Insurance Number. 

You can access this information sheet here

The Migration Justice Project, part of Law Centre Northern Ireland, have created a guide for people who have received Refugee Status, Humanitarian Protection, or Discretionary Leave to Remain. This guide includes information on rights, social security, Biometric Residence Permits and more. 

You can read the Refugee Transition Guide here

The Migration Justice Project’s  guide is helpful, but please note that some of the information is Northern Ireland specific and may not be applicable to people living in the rest of the UK. 

Family Reunion

If you have received refugee status, you can apply to have your family members join you in the UK. This process is called ‘Family Reunion’. 

Free Movement and Refugee Legal Support have drafted a user-friendly, detailed guide to family reunion which you can use to understand this process. Read the guide here

Becoming a British Citizen

If you are granted refugee status or humanitarian protection, you can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) in the UK after spending 5 years in the UK. ILR is sometimes called ‘settled status’. You can learn more about applying for ILR here.

After having ILR for 12 months, and if you meet the ‘good character’ requirements, you can apply for British citizenship. This is sometimes called ‘naturalisation’. You can learn more about applying for British citizenship here.

6 comments on “What happens after you receive refugee status?

    • RtR on

      Hello Farhad, thank you for your message. You can read our Toolkit page about Lawyers to find out more about how to find one here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/yourlegalcase/. Please be warned that it is very difficult to find a lawyer with availability due to a Legal Aid crisis (there are more people who need an immigration lawyer than there are lawyers available to serve them).

      Even though we are not able to provide you with a lawyer or direct advice, we do have a Toolkit which is a step-by-step guide to the asylum and immigration process in the UK, which many people use to help them through their case whether or not they have a lawyer. You can access it here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/

      Best of luck to you.

    • right-to-remain on

      Dear Arno. See the government website here on the process of applying for UK citizenship. You can apply for citizenship if you’ve lived in the UK for 5 years and have had indefinite leave to remain in the UK for 12 months. The requirements are listed below, and include having passed the Life in the UK test. In solidarity, RtR


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Please note Right to Remain cannot provide immigration legal advice that is specific to your individual asylum and immigration application.

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