“What UK visa do I need?” is a common question from clients who are looking to make the next step with their immigration status. When you are on the outside of this sort of situation, you may be thinking that it’s easy to get a visa. You simply fill out a form, send the UK Government some documentation and suddenly you have an approved visa UK citizens can’t refuse! If only it was that easy. Right now, the UK is relaxing their immigration laws due to the outbreak of Covid-19, however this won’t be forever. That’s why if your visa is set to expire or you need to simply renew it, it’s time for you to consider your options.
With the help of Gowing Law Solicitors, we can assist you in picking the perfect visa for you. That way you can settle in the UK permanently and, eventually, obtain British citizenship.
The Basics: How to claim your Visa
Before we dive into the types of visas available to you, let’s start off with how the UK visa system actually works. Now that Brexit has been practically signed and sealed, it is crucial that you obtain your citizenship before January 2021. This is when Britain will fully pull away from EU law and start to regulate itself, most likely discarding the majority of rules that were originally put into place.
So, what do you need to know about the Visa system to get started? Well, recently the UK has been talking about potentially moving away from the EU’s free movement as an attempt to lower immigration levels. Instead, it is considering to adopt a point system to calculate whether or not an immigration has the correct criteria to gain indefinite leave to remain. Take a look at this quick video to help you understand the basics of the point system:
Now, if we are going to be honest about the UK’s point system, it is basically a way of ensuring the people coming to the country are well-educated and have high-paying jobs. You can gain points for the following:
- Educational Qualifications
- Future Earnings (aka. High job salary, over £25,600)
- Sponsorship (from a company, university or work body)
- Full grasp of the English language
- Self-sufficient Funds
Gowing Law Solicitors can help you figure out how many points you can accumulate in order to get your UK Visa. Remember to keep an eye on the points system debate to see how it develops in the future. The BBC is a great place to start.
You may also want to check out our recent blog on the basics of the right to remain. This will teach you your immigration rights and how Gowing Law Solicitors can help you move forward.
Once you have proved your “settled status” or “pre-settled status”, then you will have the right to the following services:
- Being able to stay in the UK for more than 3 months
- The Ability to work in the UK
- Studying in the UK
- Using the NHS
- Claiming a State Pension
- Being able to rent a home in the UK
Do you even need a Visa in the UK?
A quick point to make before we move onto the different types of Visas is about your own eligibility. In some circumstances you may not even need a Visa to take up a residence in the UK. This will depend on your nationality. For instance, you will not have to apply for a UK visa for a trip to England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland if you are:
- A Commonwealth Citizen
- An EEA Citizen
- A Swiss Citizen
You may also be eligible for travel without a Visa if you already get a UK pension. As you can see there are many different ways that you can visit the UK. Just make sure to check the government’s website to check whether you may be exempt from a Visa.
Your Visa Choices
If you are interested in coming to the UK, you will have a range of visas to choose from. Take a look at some of these examples:
Each of these visas contain a specific tier ranking, meaning that you are going to have to achieve a set number of points to be eligible. If you can apply for a certain level then this may mean that you can receive a UK Settlement or even British Citizenship.
Here is what each category means:
1. Level 1 Tier: High-Valued Migrant
Level 1 includes people of exceptional talent in science or arts, entrepreneurs, graduate entrepreneurs, investors and highly-skilled workers.
2. Level 2 Tier: Skilled Workers
Level 2 includes general workers, ministers of religion, sportspeople and intra-company transferred employees.
3. Level 3 Tier: Low-Skilled Workers
This level has been (at present) suspended. Originally it was to allow for low-skilled workers to enter the UK during labour shortages.
4. Level 4 Tier: Adult Students
Level 4 is reserved for adult students over the age of 16. If the person is studying on a National Qualification or a university/college study programme, they will be eligible for this visa.
5. Level 5 Tier: Temporary Workers
Temporary workers may include people travelling into the country for new business ventures. This includes the arts, sporting events, charity events, religious work, government-authorised exchange, youth mobility schemes and International agreements (GAT.)
When you are looking at the different levels available, make sure to pick based on your own skill set and the reason why you want to enter the UK. That way you can feel confident that your green card will be approved.
The Main Visas: What do you need to know about them?
As you saw from our previous chart, you can basically organise the different visas into education, work and family. These are the fastest ways that you can be considered for a settlement status. Whilst all of them entail that you understand English, potentially have a job or income that can keep you sustained, they do each have specific criteria and information that is crucial to remember. Here is what you need to know:
All of the Visas UK authorities can offer you have several things in common. You need to make sure you have the right level of language to apply and that you can support yourself. That way you can be independent and find a place for yourself within the culture of the UK.
If you need any more information on specific visa types, please check out the government website. They have the most updated information on gaining a settled status in the UK.
Applying for a Visa
With the help of an immigration law solicitor in Manchester, you have a higher chance of getting a green card for your stay in the UK. Before you speak to your immigration expert, make sure that you have all of your information in order. This includes:
- Your Passport
- Any sponsorship confirmation letters
- Evidence that you can support yourself financially
- Proof that you are fluent in English
- Proof of payment for your health-care sub charge
- Confirmation of education placement
- Evidence of job position in the UK
- Birth certificates or proof of spouse/family relationships
File these documents away carefully and then give them to your lawyer at Gowing Law Solicitors. They can recommend the best visa for you and support you as you begin your journey to settle in the UK. If you are planning on staying longer than 6 months, you may need to obtain a biometric ID.
How much does an immigration Visa for the UK cost?
This depends entirely on which of the visas you go for, and whether or not you go for expedited information process. However, most visas will cost over £500 unless you fall into a category that exempts you from the fees. Keep in mind that visas are expensive and change their cost depending on how long you want to stay in the UK. Make sure to discuss this with your lawyer to ensure you have enough funds to pick the right one for you and your situation.
How long will it take for my UK Visa to be approved?
Again, this depends on your own personal situation. However, most are processed within 10 days. Others may take longer, up to 30 days, if they are more complicated. Consider your own situation and try to display your information as clearly as possible. The more transparent you are with your documents, the faster it will be processed.
Employ a Specialist Immigration Lawyer to help you!
Taking the step to move your life from one country to another can be a scary prospect. It’s complicated and you may not have the experience needed to ensure that you can do it on your own. But you don’t need to be alone. Gowing Law Solicitors provides helpful legal assistance in relation to immigration statuses. All you need to do is fill out our helpful application!
A Gowing Law Immigration Solicitor can help you complete any complicated forms and paperwork in relation to your right to remain. This new service is only £250 plus Vat per applicant! We will make sure that your application has all the information needed to make sure you can stay in the UK. So, why not contact us for some advice now! Our specialist immigration team would be more than happy to help you.
Ready to learn more?
We aim to make the law simple for you to understand! We have recently focused on immigration blogs, however our previous topic from last week was PPI tax reclaims! Learn all about the basics of PPI tax reclaims and whether or not you can make a PPI tax claim if you are self-employed. We make PPI tax claims easy. Check out our blogs now!
Contact Gowing Law Solicitors now about your UK Visa
No matter what sort of immigration issue you have, Gowing Law Solicitors, Manchester’s top law firm, are here to help you solve it. Contact our team now by phone, at 0800 041 8350 or through our email, firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also use our contact page to message us directly.
We wish you the best of luck with your application and look forward to hearing from you soon.