Discretionary Leave (DL) applies in both asylum and non-asylum cases applying from within the UK. DL cannot be applied for from abroad. It is granted outside the Immigration Rules in accordance with Home Office policy set out in their instruction. It must not be granted where a person qualifies for asylum or humanitarian protection (HP) or for family or private life reasons.
Discretionary Leave to Remain (DLR) – 10 Years Route
From July 2012, discretionary leave to remain is usually granted for 30 months under the 10 years route to settlement which means the applicant can apply for ILR after completing 10 years under the discretionary leave to remain.
You can apply for renewal of your discretionary leave to remain which was granted outside the Immigration Rules based on exceptional compelling and compassionate circumstances of the applicant. For the application for renewal of Discretionary Leave to Remain to succeed, there should be no adverse change in the circumstances of the applicant at the time of making an application for renewal of the Discretionary Leave.
Children born in the UK to parents who both have DL and are not British Citizens should normally be granted limited leave in line with their parents. If only one parent has DL, the leave to be granted will depend on the status of the other parent
Where DL is granted, the duration of leave must be determined by considering the individual facts of the case but leave should not normally be granted for more than 30 months (2 and a half years) at a time.
When a person is granted an initial period of DL, this does not necessarily mean they will be entitled to further leave or to settlement. Subsequent periods of leave may be granted providing the applicant continues to meet the relevant criteria set out in the published policy on DL applicable at the time of the decision.
From 9 July 2012, those granted DL must normally have completed a continuous period of at least 120 months’ limited leave (i.e. a total of 10 years, normally consisting of 4 separate 2 and a half year periods of leave) before being eligible to apply for settlement
Indefinite leave to remain
A person will normally become eligible to apply for settlement after completing a continuous period of 120 months’ (10 years’) limited leave. The application will be considered in light of the circumstances prevailing at that time. All settlement applications must be made on the appropriate form no more than 28 days before existing leave expires. Any time spent in prison in connection with a criminal conviction will not count towards the 10 years. However, leave can be aggregated either side of a period of imprisonment providing that the continuous residence requirement is met.
Any leave accrued whilst waiting for a valid application for further leave to be considered, may count towards the required period of leave for settlement, providing the application was made in time and leave was automatically extended in accordance with section 3C(2) of the Immigration Act 1971.
From 9 July 2012, those granted DL must normally have completed a continuous period of at least 120 months’ limited leave (i.e. a total of 10 years, normally consisting of 4 separate 2 and a half year periods of leave) before being eligible to apply for settlement.
A person who has was granted initial Discretionary Leave following refusal of his asylum claim and then extension of the same for another 3 years, can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) upon completion of 6 years.