From 2nd November 2018, the way applicants make an application for settlement, citizenship or to stay in the UK for study or work, has changed.
If you made an application on or after 2 November 2018, you may be given a choice between using a new service for enrolling your biometrics and submitting evidence or using the existing service offered through the Post Office or at a Premium Service Centre (PSC) (subject to availability).
What is changing?
Customers seeking leave to remain or settlement in the UK on some routes will have a choice between using the existing service or the new UK Visa and Citizenship Application Service (UKVCAS).
Over the coming months, the majority of paper application forms will be withdrawn and most UK-based applicants applying for leave to remain in the UK or to settle permanently will need to apply online. Check the GOV.UK guidance to see how to make an application.
Applicants will be led through an online application process making it clear what they need to do, what supporting evidence they will need and where they will need to go to complete their application.
New UKVCAS centres have started opening across the UK, with all locations opening by early January 2019. You can check when service centres will be opening near you.
There will be 57 UKVCAS centres across the UK:
- 6 core service centres offering free appointments
- 50 enhanced service centres offering charged appointments
- 1 premium lounge
Optional added-value services will also be available.
Your application form and appointment letter will tell you how to give your biometrics and how to provide your supporting evidence.
New service: UKVCAS centres
Under the new service, you can make the application, pay application fee online, including your biometric enrolment fee (if applicable). You will also have to pay the immigration health surcharge (if applicable) online before you make your application and include your reference number on your online application.
You’ll then be directed to book an appointment at a UKVCAS centre.
You will be able to choose an appointment within 5 working days of making your application.
If your application includes family members, you will all need to attend an appointment at a UKVCAS centre at the same time. Children under 16 must be accompanied to their appointment by the responsible adult named on the application. If you choose to use the new service, you will not need to post your supporting evidence to UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI).
You will either self-upload your evidence or take it with you to your appointment.
In most cases, you will have your supporting evidence (including your passport) returned to you immediately once the appointment is finished.
You will be told what you need to bring to your appointment when you submit your application, this will include:
- appointment confirmation
- passport or travel document
- supporting evidence (unless you choose to self-upload)
At your appointment you will:
- show your appointment confirmation (you will get this as an email containing a QR code) and ID documents to confirm your appointment
- enrol your biometric information (fingerprints, photograph) and digital signature
- submit your supporting evidence (unless you choose to self-upload this)
- show your passport or travel document and have your identity checked
- speak to a member of staff who will check that your biometric information has been successfully enrolled and your passport and supporting evidence has scanned correctly.
If you would like to discuss your immigration matter with an expert, contact us now for a FREE NON-OBLIGATION consultation.