British Nationality Act 1981

British Nationality Act 1981

British Nationality Act 1981

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The British Nationality Act 1981 was an Act of Parliament passed by the British Parliament concerning British nationality. It has been the basis of British nationality law since 1 January 1983.


In the mid-1970s the British Government decided to update the nationality code, which had been significantly amended since the British Nationality Act 1948 came into force on 1 January 1949. In 1977, a Green Paper was produced outlining options for reform of the nationality code. This was followed in 1980 by a White Paper containing the government's specific plans for change. The British Nationality Act 1981 received Royal Assent on 30 October 1981 and came into force on 1 January 1983.

Subsequently, the British Nationality Act has been significantly amended, including:

Objectives of the Act

The Act had a number of purposes.

Reclassification of United Kingdom and Colonies citizenship

The Act reclassified Citizenship of the United Kingdom and Colonies (CUKC) into three...
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