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12. (1) Subject to the following paragraphs, a residence permit shall be valid for at least five years.
(2) In the case of a worker who is to be employed in the United Kingdom for less than twelve but more than three months, the validity of the residence permit may be limited to the duration of the employment.
(3) In the case of a seasonal worker who is to be employed for more than three months the validity of the residence permit may be limited to the duration of the employment if the duration is indicated in the document confirming the worker’s engagement or in a certificate of employment.
(4) In the case of a provider or recipient of services the validity of the residence permit may be limited to the period during which the services are to be provided.
(5) In the case of a student the residence permit shall be valid for a period which does not exceed the duration of the course of study; but where the course lasts for more than one year the validity of the residence permit may be limited to one year.
(6) In the case of a retired person or a self-sufficient person the validity of the residence permit may be limited to an initial period of two years, which may be extended for a further three years.
(7) The validity of a residence permit shall not be affected by absence from the United Kingdom for no more than six consecutive months or absence from the United Kingdom on military service.
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