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Life in the UK test – Understanding the process

Life in the UK test

Updated: 18 September, 2022

You have to take the Life in the UK test if you are applying for British citizenship or for settlement (indefinite leave to remain) in the UK.

You’ll need to pass this test before you send in your application form.

Cost of the Life in the UK test

The test costs £50. If you fail the test, you have to book and pay £50 every time you retake it.

Format of the Life in the UK test

The test is computer-based. You have to answer 24 questions within 45 minutes. All questions are multiple choices, meaning that you have to select the right answer(s) within a selection of different possible answers.

The test is in English. But if you are in Wales, you may ask to take the test in Welsh, or if you are in Scotland, you may ask to take the test in Scottish Gaelic.

Life in the UK test study material

The test is based on the handbook Life in the UK: A Guide for New Residents (3rd Edition).

You can either buy the book alone from the tso shop for £12.99, or you can sign up for our Complete Online Life in the UK Test Practice Package which includes a reproduction of this handbook (text and audio format).

The handbook has 5 chapters in total. You will be tested on all chapters.

On 8 September 2022 Her Majesty the Queen sadly passed away. Sections of the handbook, which refer to Queen Elizabeth II and the Monarchy, are out of date and have been removed. You will not be asked any questions on this as part of the Home Office approved test based on the current (3rd) edition of the Life in the UK handbook.

Life in the UK test booking procedure

You can only book and pay for your test online. Before booking your actual test, you will need to register for a Life in the UK account (always double-check that you enter accurate personal details).

You only can book a test for yourself.

You can take a test that is 3 days or more from when you book your test.

Book your test here.

There are over 30 testing centres around the UK. When you book your test, you will be given the location and direction of the closest test centres to you.

Life in the UK test rules

Before taking the test, you will be asked to present an original photo ID. If you don’t do so, you won’t be able to take the test and you won’t get a refund.

At the end of your test, they will tell you verbally if you have passed or failed the test, and they will give you your URN, which is your unique reference number for your test result. You will be able to also find that URN and your test result in your LitUK account.

Preparing for the Life in the UK test

If you need help preparing for your test, we offer a complete online training program, click here for more information.

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Prepare for your Life in the UK Test

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27 replies on “Life in the UK test – Understanding the process”

  1. Hi i took the test in 2008/2009 but was never given any notification that i had passed. We were told details would be sent to the home office. I am now looking to apply for my citizenship, can anyone help please?

    1. Hello. For this kind of inquiry, you should call the Life in the UK test helpline on the number below:
      0800 0154245
      Opening hours for the helpdesk is Monday to Friday 8-6.
      Good luck!

  2. Hi, i took the test in 2008/2009.. and i passed the test and given the notification pass letter.. i did a photocopy but unfortunately i couldn’t find it.. however, on getting to the home office to process my ILR i gave them all my documents including my original pass notification letter..after the process all my documents was returned to me except the pass notification letter and i wasn’t told i would need it for my citizenship..now i am about to apply for my citizenship can you help me out on this issue and advice me on what to do??.. and tried to contact the home office several times but will not avail..i can’t afford to do another test. what if i don’t pass it??..thanks very much.

    1. Hello Ajay. We help people pass their citizenship test, but unfortunately we cannot tell you what you should do regarding your original pass notification letter. You should try to contact the Life in the UK test helpline (0800 0154245 – Opening hours for the helpdesk is Monday to Friday 8-6). They will certainly be able to help you out.

  3. Hi there,

    Just want to know how early could we give this test if i am tentatively about to apply mid Dec 13 for ILR?

    Thanks

    1. Hello Moh. We can help you prepare and pass your Life in the UK test, but for any questions regarding the official requirements for the Life in the UK test, you should contact the Life in the UK test helpline on the number below:
      0800 0154245
      Opening hours for the helpdesk is Monday to Friday 8-6.
      Good luck!

  4. hi I would like to know that I did my first test and I was fail on that time I had my passport but because of short time I send my passport to home office and rebook the test I have test but I have passport copy so will they accept it or not or what should I do

    1. Hello Sana. For this question, it is best if you call the Life in the UK test helpline on the number below:
      0800 0154245
      Opening hours for the helpdesk is Monday to Friday 8-6.

    1. According to the UK Border Agency website, if you have a visual impairment, you can take the test in large print or the computer can read out each question for you. If you have special needs, you should contact your nearest test centre for details of the support it can provide.

    1. Hello Paul. We don’t know about your wife’s situation, so it is best if you call the UK Border Agency to get a definite answer to your question. Good luck!

  5. Hi,
    I have ESOL advanced certificate, which is passed reading, writing, listening and speaking the advance level (higher). Do I still need to do the Life in the Uk test or not.
    Thank you
    Rono

  6. Hi, I’m 18 years old. I’ve already done my GCSEs and a levels and I’m currently doing my first year at University. Do I still need to take the Life in the UK test before applying for British Citizenship?

    1. i am same but i have done my life in UK, thought id ask u if u still need Esol evn if u have A levels n u r at uni??

  7. let me know how long I have to wait, after received my resident permit, to sit exam. and when can I apply my British Pass Port.
    Nihal.

  8. if a person as been here since 1967 but never learn English and are not educated how can they become a British chitiezn

  9. Hi! I am wondering that how long does life in the UK test result valid? If I passed it now, will it expire after some time? Thanks!

    1. Your Life in the UK test should not expire. Please confirm with the Life in the UK test helpline at 0800 0154245 (Opening hours for the helpdesk is Monday to Friday 8-6.). Good luck!

  10. Hi,
    I am Duha,
    could you help me, last week in December I did life in the UK exam
    but unfortunately I didn’t pass my exam life in the UK test.
    I have a question about during the exam on the computer it has one option ‘FLAG’
    how can i use it? please explain me.

  11. Hi
    My husband passed the test in 2008 but lost the certificate. He booked it again and failed it. Can u tell me if the informations of the failed candidates will be sent to the home office. If not he still has the chance to say he has passed it in the application does he?

  12. I have passed the test 3 weeks before. Still waiting for the certificate how long it will take to receive the certificate.

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