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Nationality Checking Service

Image of British PassportNationality Checking Service

  1. What is the Nationality Checking Service?
  2. Will the Council give me advice about nationality?
  3. Will my application get processed more quickly?
  4. Do I have to pay for the checking service?
  5. Do I have to use the Worcestershire County Council checking service?
  6. What happens when I use the checking service?
  7. Do all local authorities provide this service?
  8. How do I get a citizenship application form?
  9. How do I know Worcestershire County Council is competent to offer the checking service?
  10. What do I do if I want to complain about the service I receive?
  11. Useful Information

Answers:

  1. Q: What is the Nationality Checking Service?
    A: The Nationality Checking Service is a partnership between the Home Office Border and Immigration Agency and some local councils in England and Wales. Worcestershire County Council offers an optional service to those applicants who wish to take advantage of it.

    For a modest fee, we will check that applications for British nationality are completed correctly and have been submitted with all the necessary supporting documents and the correct fee.

    We will photocopy and certify valuable documents such as passports and will forward applications to the Home Office by special delivery post. Applications of this type can often be dealt with more quickly than those which turn out to be incomplete.

    Applicants using this service will be able to retain their passports and other valuable documents rather than sending them to the Home Office.
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  2. Q: Will the Council give me advice about nationality?
    A: The Council will not be able to provide advice on nationality matters. If you require advice locally, you can contact the Nationality Helpdesk on 0845 010 5200.
    Lines are open from 08.30 until 18.00 Monday to Friday.
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  3. Q: Will my application get processed more quickly?
    A: The time it takes the Home Office to deal with an application varies according to individual circumstances and other factors, including the number of applications under consideration at a particular time.
    However, complete and accurate applications are dealt with, on average, more quickly than those that are incomplete or which require further enquiries.
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  4. Q: Do I have to pay for the checking service?
    A: : Yes.  This is a pre-payment service and the fees are taken at the time of booking the appointment. The fees are listed below.

    - Adult who submits a single application pays one fee
    £50.00
    - Husband and wife living together who apply at the same time pay one fee £70.00
    - Husband and wife (and up to 2 children) £95.00
    - Additional children on parents application - £20.00 per child (e.g. based on 4 children £125.00)
    - One or more children under the age of 18 who apply separately from their parents -
    £50.00per child
    - Subsequent child(ren) under 18 who apply separately from their parents - £20 per child

    Payment for the Nationality Checking Service can only by accepted by cheque, credit/debit card or cash. Please make cheques payable to ”Worcestershire County Council”.
    Please note the Home Office fee is only payable by cheque (made payable to 'The Accounting Officer, Home Office') or card.
    If you have any queries please do not hesitate to ask a member of staff.
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  5. Q: Do I have to use the Worcestershire County Council checking service?
    A: No. The service is entirely optional and just gives you greater freedom of choice. You can still apply direct to the Home Office or use a solicitor or other agent if you wish.
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  6. Q: What happens when I use the checking service?
    A: You will make an appointment with our Nationality Checkers on 0845 603 2859. When you visit, staff will:
    - check that you have completed your application form correctly
    - check that you have paid the correct fee
    - check that all necessary accompanying documents have been enclosed
    - photocopy any valuable documents that need to be considered by the Home Office, certifying that they are true copies
    - then send the application, fee and copies to the Home Office for consideration
    - return your valuable documents such as passports at the end of the appointment. This will provide peace of mind and enable you to travel, if you need to, whilst your application is being processed.

    Our Nationality Checkers will not:
      -  act as agents for you - our officer involvement is complete when the application is sent to the Home Office
      -  offer any advice on nationality, other than in respect of the correct completion of the application form
      -  offer any advice on matters such as visas, immigration or asylum.
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  7. Q: Do all local authorities provide this service?
    A: No. It is up to each council whether they wish to provide the service and this will probably depend on how many citizenship applications they have each year in their area. However, if you live in an area that does not provide a checking service you can submit your application to any participating local authority.
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  8. Q: How do I get a citizenship application form?
    A: Application forms can only be obtained from the Home Office website.
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  9. Q: How do I know Worcestershire County Council is competent to offer the checking service?
    A: The Citizenship Advisors are registered with the Office of the Immigration Service Commissioner, an independent body established by Parliament, which regulates organisations offering services of this kind.
    Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC) Website.
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  10. Q: What do I do if I want to complain about the service I receive?
    A: If your complaint relates to the attitude or level of customer service provided by Worcestershire County Council you should direct your complaint through the Worcestershire County Council complaints procedure.
    A copy of the Complaints leaflet is available from the Register Office, County Hall, or via our website www.worcestershire.gov.uk. Alternatively if your complaint relates to the quality of the advice you have been given and the professional competence of an officer employed by Worcestershire County Council, you can make your complaint in writing to:

    Office of the Immigration Service Commissioner
    Complaints Section
    5th Floor
    Counting House
    53 Tooley Street
    London
    SE1 2QN

    Details are also available on the OISC website at: www.oisc.gov.uk
    Disclaimer:
    Using the NCS does not mean that your application will receive preferential treatment at the Home Office. However, if your application is complete in every detail, it is more likely to be completed quickly than otherwise.

    The fees charged by the local councils for administering the NCS are a matter for them rather than the Home Office. Any complaint or comments about the service or the fees should be directed to Worcestershire County Council.

    Use of the NCS does not guarantee that an application will be successful. Nor does it guarantee that further enquiries will not have to be made.

    The Home Office reserves the right to make any enquiries it sees fit in considering a nationality application. Information may be shared with other government agencies where it is necessary for them to carry out their functions.
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  11. Q: Useful information
    A: Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC) helpline: 0845 000 0046
    Other useful websites can be found by following the links below.

    Related information

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This page was last reviewed 25 July 2013 at 16:07.
The page is next due for review 21 January 2015.