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Being an British citizen means that you are formally recognised as a UK national. It entails a number of rights and obligations, including full political rights, often including the right to vote, to stand for election or to sit in parliament. British citizenship can be obtained either by naturalisation or by registration. British citizenship is based on a mixture of jus soli and jus sanguinis and has been largely shaped by the UK's colonial history. Presently, one may acquire UK citizenship at birth, if born in the UK to at least one parent who is a British citizen or settled in the UK, and in certain cirmcustances those born with a UK-born grandparent may be able to claim British citizenship.

Like the USA, Canada, and Australia, the UK governement allow individuals who have held permanent residence status - either Indefinite leave to remain (ILR) or permanent residency (PR) - for a period of 12 months to apply for British Citizenship. In other words, under the current immigration rules, foreign nationals who have ILR may apply for British citizenship either by naturalisation or registration, usually easier than naturalisation, if they have held ILR for twelve months.

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