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Ruslan Chernov
Ruslan Chernov

Uk Visa Home Office



This is advice for visa customers and applicants in the UK, visa customers outside of the UK and British nationals overseas who need to apply for a passport affected by travel restrictions associated with coronavirus.




uk visa home office



Many people need to get in contact with the Home Office for enquiries about visa applications, to track a visa status, or find out further information about an immigration case. Although it can be difficult to contact UKVI, there are phone, email, post, and online contact details. This page is an ultimate resource of all contact details for the Home Office.


There are also a number of Service and Support Centres (SSCs) located around Britain for the purposes of serving individuals with visa or immigration applications. The SSCs are located in the followng locations:


You must confirm at the time of registration that you wish to use your test result for a UK visa application. You must sit the test in an 'IELTS for UKVI' test session, as UKVI will not accept results from other testing locations. How often is an IELTS or IELTS Life Skills test available?


There are no restrictions on retaking the IELTS test. However, if IELTS Life Skills, if you pass the IELTS Life Skills test, you cannot retake it at the same level for a period of two years. If you do not pass it, there are no restrictions on retaking the IELTS Life Skills test. How is my IELTS test different if I take it for UK visa purposes?


Test Report Forms, however, will be slightly different in order to show that test takers have taken the test at an IELTS UK visa session. If I take an IELTS test for UK visa purposes, can I use my result in other countries/for other purposes?


If you are looking to live, work or study in the UK, then you will need to apply for the appropriate visa through UK visas and Immigration (UKVI) in order to do so. Trinity College London is here to help you understand which UK visa is right for you.


To be able to get a work, study or family visa for the UK, you may need to take an English language test to prove your ability to speak, listen, write or read English. There are different levels of Secure English Language Tests - also known as SELTs - that use the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (or CEFR) guidance to assess your abilities. Which SELT test you will need to take will depend on the type of visa you're applying for.


If you have recently applied for a UK visa, you will probably be aware that it may take longer to receive a decision on your application due to widespread delays currently impacting Home Office processing times.


Due to backlogs caused by the Ukraine visa schemes, it is currently taking the Home Office double the normal amount of time to provide a decision on other visa applications. The government is currently prioritising the processing of applications filed under the Ukraine visa schemes. For this reason, caseworking resources are stretched and the department has been forced to suspend priority services amid the delays.


When pressed on the issue, Home Secretary Priti Patel admitted that she was unable to give a date for when visa processing times could return to normal. In May, the Labour chairwoman of the Home Affairs Committee Dame Diana Johnson wrote to Patel to ask when she expected the timescale to return to the 60-day timeframe.


After paying out thousands in visa fees, many applicants left waiting for a decision now face a great deal of uncertainty, unable to make firm travel plans and take important steps such as giving formal notice to their current employers and landlords until they have received their UK visa.


The guidance currently states that UKVI will continue to prioritise applications under the Ukraine visa schemes. With the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine still ongoing, the situation remains fluid and therefore Smith Stone Walters is regretfully unable to provide a definitive answer at this time on when processing times could return to normal.


Given the delays, employers should factor in additional time to the recruitment process, and be prepared for work start dates to be delayed. We recommend starting the visa application process as soon as possible if your business intends to sponsor workers from overseas. We strongly advise applicants postpone making any firm travel plans until your visa has been granted.


The Home Office has assured sponsors and visa applicants that they are working hard to clear the backlog and return to standard service. Whilst it may be tempting to contact the Home Office for a progress update, UKVI has advised sponsors not to chase up applications unless there are exceptional circumstances.


If you are applying for a UK visa and require expert advice and support in the process, Smith Stone Walters is here to help. Our team of qualified immigration advisors based in London, New York, Hong Kong and Mumbai are experienced in filing applications under a range of immigration routes.


As an international student coming to the University to study a full-time course of more than six months you must apply for a Student visa (under the Student Route) before coming to the UK to start your course. For shorter courses, or part-time or distance learning courses, check the Before you arrive page to find out if studying as a Visitor may be appropriate.


Note that Priority Visa and Super Priority Visa services for student visa applications, which had been suspended in ALL countries overseas, were reinstated on 12 August and are available for new applications made from this date. It is not possible to get these services for applications already made, for which the standard processing time of 15 working days from biometrics or ID confirmation via the app should apply.


You MUST complete the process to obtain your Student visa before coming to the UK. You CANNOT come to the UK as a visitor and switch visa status. We CANNOT enrol you on a visitor visa, so you would not be able to start your course. These are Home Office requirements that students and the University must follow.


The Student route is similar to Tier 4 but includes EU/EEA and Swiss nationals starting study on or after 1 January 2021 who have not applied under the EU Settlement Scheme. EU/EEA or Swiss nationals resident in the UK before 11pm 31 December 2020 had until 30 June 2021 to apply for the EU Settlement Scheme. If you have a Tier 4 visa for a previous course you do not need to change it but your new application will be under the new student route.


The University of Oxford is the sponsor for your Student visa, and issues your Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) which you need for a Student visa application. Once your offer to study is unconditional (you have met all academic and financial conditions) the University will contact you by email about the preparation of your CAS. This is a unique number that will enable government officers to access information which your college and the University have provided.


Your CAS gives information such as your course start and end date, fees, and may list one or more of your academic qualifications on which your offer was based. Check our application guide to see if you will need to provide evidence of finances with your visa application. If you are coming for degree level study you probably won't have to provide evidence of previous qualification.


If you are applying for a Student route visa for an ATAS subject you will need an ATAS certificate to include with your visa application. If you are coming as a Standard Visitor for a short period of study or research requiring ATAS you must have the certificate before you start the study or research. Although you don't have to submit the ATAS certificate for a Standard Visitor visa application you will need to apply for it before you come to the UK because of the long processing times.


If you are already in the UK, you may be able to apply in-UK for your student visa, though not if you are here as a visitor or without a visa. Our page on applying for a Student visa in the UK explains circumstances in which you can apply here. You MUST not come to the UK as a visitor or without a visa as you will not be able to make a Student visa application from within the UK or start your course.


If you are coming to the UK for more than 6 months you will be required to pay the IHS as part of your Student visa application. Any dependants will also need to pay this. The IHS must be paid even if you have your own private medical insurance and do not intend to use the NHS. Paying the IHS means that you will have access to the UK's National Health Service on the same basis as other UK residents.


The IHS is charge is 470 for each year or part year over six months of the visa being applied for, plus 235 for part of a year that is less than six months. If a student (or a dependant) is making a visa application in the UK, they will be required to pay the health surcharge even if the period applied for is less than six months. There is full information on the IHS on the Home Office website.


After you have completed your visa application you will need to book a biometric appointment to give a face scan and fingerprints, after which your visa application will be processed. European and Swiss applicants are not usually required to have a biometric appointment, but instead can use an identity confirmation app. The standard visa processing time following biometrics is 15 working days but you can sometimes pay for a Priority or Super Priority service for a quicker visa decision. The priority services are not always available in all locations, so check availability before making your appointment. UKVI has an information page about the Priority and Super Priority Visa services. If your application is going to take longer than 15 days UKVI will contact you.


If your Student visa application is for a course longer than six months a 90-day travel vignette/sticker will be stuck into your passport when your visa is approved to allow you to travel to the UK. On arrival in the UK you will need to collect your BRP (Biometric Residence Permit), with the full visa duration for your course, from the main Post Office in Oxford or a Post Office nearer to your residential address. 041b061a72


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