Hounslow Council

Nationality checking service

Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner logo

We work in partnership with the Home Office to provide a service to help those in our community applying for British citizenship.

The Nationality Checking Service (NCS) will help ensure that your citizenship application is properly completed and submitted with all the relevant supporting documents.

All applicants for naturalisation will need to demonstrate knowledge of life in the United Kingdom.

The aim is to ensure that new British citizens are equipped with basic level understanding of British culture, customs and life in UK in general.

For applicants whose first language is English or who are already competent in the language, should take the test on Knowledge of Life in UK. Test centre location details and further information is available at  www.lifeintheuktest.gov.uk.  Please note that evidence of identity must be produced when you sit the test. A letter will be issued from the test centre when you have passed the test and this must be provided with your other documents when you use the Nationality Checking Service. The document will be sent with your application to the Home Office, and not photocopied and returned to you.

For applicants whose first language is not English or who have a limited command of the English language should undertake an ESOL - with- citizenship course. (English for speakers of other languages). These are standard ESOL courses with 'Life in the UK' syllabus and will be provided from EnglishUK accredited colleges. Applicants passing at entry level 1, 2 or 3 will have reached the required standard. When you attend an appointment with the Nationality Checking Service you must producean ESOL certificate stating you have a 'Skills for Life ESOL' qualification and an additional letter from the college confirming that the course used citizenship materials and that a life in UK syllabus was used.

Further information and advice is available on the Home Office, Learn Direct and Life in the UK websites or by calling the Life in the UK helpline 0800 015 4245.

At Hounslow our advisers are trained and registered to check and forward your application. They will photocopy and certify your passport and other valuable documents so these remain in your possession and then send your application and correct fee to the Home Office by special delivery post.

Nationality Checking Service is by appointment only.  Please call us on 020 8583 2090.

NCS costs


The fee for the service is £70 per adult application and £40 per child, inclusive of VAT.

Saturday and Thursday evenings

The fee for the service is £80 for each adult and £40 per child, inclusive of VAT.

Using the NCS is entirely optional and simply gives you greater freedom of choice. You can apply directly to the Home Office yourself or use a solicitor or other agent.

The Nationality Checking Service does NOT offer

  • a priority service for processing your application with the Home Office (however, complete        and accurate forms are processed, on average, more quickly than those that are incomplete or which need further enquires.)

  • any advice on nationality other than in relation to the completion of the application form

  • any advice on other matters such as visas, immigration or asylum

  • we cannot act as agents for the applicant. Further enquiries about your application progress or the decision should be made to the Home Office

If you require further advice, you should contact the Home Office via their website.

Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner (OISC)

Our advisers are registered with the OISC, an independent body established by parliament, which regulates organisations offering services of this kind.

Staff operating the Nationality Checking Service have been provided with a set of desk instructions which set out the precise extent of their duties.

If a client requires advice or services which are outside our remit, the adviser will refer that person to the Home Office and record the fact.

Comments, compliments and complaints

The Nationality Checking Service is provided by the London Borough of Hounslow’s Register Office.

If you wish to make any comments or complaints, please contact the senior citizenship co-ordinator.

Contact us

E-mail: citizenship@hounslow.gov.uk

Tel: 020 8583 2090

Register Office
88 Lampton Road

All complaints are handled according to our complaints procedures.

You can also write directly to:

The Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner
Complaints Section
5th Floor, Counting House
53 Tooley Street