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Immigration status - impact of bankruptcy

This advice applies to Wales

If you've been declared bankrupt, this could have an impact on your immigration status or any application you're making for British nationality. You should make sure you understand this before you go ahead with a bankruptcy application.

This page explains how going bankrupt can affect your immigration status.

Top tip

If you're considering bankruptcy, you'll need expert advice. You can get advice about your debt problems and bankruptcy from your local Citizens Advice bureau.

To search for details of your nearest CAB, including those that can give advice by e-mail, click on nearest CAB.

How bankruptcy can affect your immigration status

If you're declared bankrupt, this may:

  • jeopardise any application you're making or are about to make to become a British citizen
  • bar you from acting as a sponsor for a dependent who wishes to enter the UK
  • put your immigration status as a person of independent means at risk.

If you're applying for British citizenship

If you're applying for British citizenship, being declared bankrupt will mean that your application is likely to be turned down.

This is because one of the things UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) checks when deciding whether to grant you citizenship is whether you're of good character. Good character includes your financial background. UKVI will check things like whether you pay income tax or National Insurance Contributions, but will also look at whether you've been declared bankrupt at any time.

If you're an undischarged bankrupt, your application is likely to be turned down.

If you were declared bankrupt some time ago and have been discharged, your application may succeed, but this will depend on a whole range of other factors.

If you're concerned about how going bankrupt will affect your application for British citizenship, you should get independent legal advice before you petition for bankruptcy.

Next steps

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