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  • Alastair Blair

The new UK Student VISA




A new Student Visa has replaced the Tier 4 (General Student) visa under the UK’s new immigration system.


As with the previous Tier 4 visa, the new Student Visa route is for international students aged 16 or over who wish to study full-time, or part-time in some limited circumstances, in the UK, and are sponsored by an education provider that holds a valid student sponsor licence.


You can apply for a Student visa to study in the UK if you’re 16 or over and you:

·       have been offered a place on a course by a licenced student sponsor

·       have enough money to support yourself and pay for the course - the amount will vary depending on your circumstances

·       can speak, read, write and understand English

·       have consent from your parents if you’re 16 or 17 - you’ll need evidence of this when you apply

 

If you’re 16 or 17 and you want to study at an independent school in the UK, you may be eligible for a Child Student visa instead.  Please contact us for advice on this.


When to apply

When you can apply depends on whether you’re applying from inside or outside the UK.

Applying from outside the UK

The earliest you can apply for a visa is 6 months before you start your course.

You’ll usually get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks.


Applying from inside the UK

The earliest you can apply is 3 months before your course starts.

You must apply before your current visa expires. Your new course must begin within 28 days of your current visa expiring.

You’ll usually get a decision within 8 weeks.


How long you can stay

How long you can stay depends on the length of your course and what study you’ve already completed in the UK.

If you’re 18 or over and your course is at degree level, you can usually stay in the UK for up to 5 years. If it’s below degree level, you can usually stay in the UK for up to 2 years.


Staying longer in the UK

You may be able to:

·       extend or switch your visa if you’re eligible, for example to continue your studies in the UK


When you can travel to the UK

You can arrive before your course starts. This can be either:

·       up to 1 week before, if your course lasts 6 months or less

·       up to 1 month before, if your course lasts more than 6 months

You must not travel to the UK before the start date given on your visa, no matter when your course starts.


Fees

It costs:

·       £490 to apply for a Student visa from outside the UK

·       £490 to extend or switch to a Student visa from inside the UK


You must pay the visa fee for each person that joins you.


Healthcare surcharge

You’ll also have to pay for your health as part of your application.

How much you pay depends on how long your visa lasts


Your partner and children

You may be able to bring your partner and children. Again, please contact us for advice on this – and any other concerns you have about Student Visas.


Silvia Rodriguez Molina

 

 

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