Can Manchester Immigration Lawyers help me submit my UK visa application?
If you are a non-EEA citizen and you wish to visit the UK, you may need to apply for a UK Visa.
Once you get your permit, you will be able to spend a certain amount of time in the UK. However, before you apply for a UK visa, you must ensure that you meet all the relevant eligibility criteria. If your application is successful, the national authorities will collect your details and provide you with your visa.
The process of submitting your UK visa application may be complex and time-consuming. For this reason, and to maximise your chances of success, it is recommended to seek the advice of an immigration expert.
At Manchester Immigration Lawyers, we employ only the best solicitors and advisors, who will provide you and your family with all the help you will need to get your visa.
Contact us today to find out more about our services.
Do I need a visa to visit the UK?
Depending on your nationality, you may be required to apply for a UK visa to enter the country. Nevertheless, in some cases, you may be exempt from immigration controls. This applies to all EEA, EU, Swiss and Commonwealth citizens.
If you are unsure whether you need to apply for a UK visa, you can seek the advice of an immigration expert. At Manchester Immigration Lawyers, we employ the best professionals, who will be happy to help.
At present, UK immigration law provides applicants with a wide range of visa tiers, targeted at different circumstances. This includes:
- UK Family Visas, if you wish to bring your parents or children to the UK with you;
- UK Partner Visas, which allow you to travel with your spouse, fiancé, civil or unmarried partner;
- Student visas, for international pupils, either children or adults;
- UK Work visas, for both skilled workers and ambitious investors or innovators, who wish to pursue their career in the UK.
- UK Visitor visas
- Settlement Applications, such as British naturalization, Indefinite Leave to Remain and EU Settlement Scheme. These routes are for those who have spent an adequate amount of time in the UK and are ready to settle in this country.
How do I submit my application?
The majority of UK visa applications can be made online. However, you also submit an extensive portfolio of supporting document and evidence, to demonstrate your eligibility.
Depending on your circumstances and your visa application, you may be required to provide the Home Office with specific documents.
As a general rule, the following are the main documents that you must attach to your forms:
- Your passport or any other valid personal ID, which must have at least a blank page;
- Two photographs
- Proof you have adequate financial means to support yourself and your family or your business while in the UK
- Proof that you have paid your visa fees
All documents which are not written in English or Welsh must be accompanied by a certified translation.
UK visa application process
Each UK visa application may vary based on the tier you are applying for, your home country and your personal circumstances. However, there are some common steps that applicants must follow before their permit is released. This includes:
- Complete your application forms with all the relevant details
- Pay your application fee
- Submit your paperwork, including your supporting documents, to the UKVI
- Wait for the letter with the UKVI’s decision.
If your application is successful, you will need to book an appointment at your nearest UK visa application centre to have your biometrics (fingerprints and photographs) collected.
Once your visa is confirmed, you will have your Biometric Residence Permit delivered to you within ten days.
When can I apply for a UK visa?
Based on UKVI guidelines, the earliest you can apply for a UK visa and submit your application forms is three months before the date you intend to travel to the UK. This may change if your case is particularly time-sensitive, or if you are already in the UK and you need to apply for an extension before your leave to stay expires.
It must be noted that you will not be able to enter the UK until you receive official permission and your visa is granted. For this reason, it is advisable to take into account potential delays, especially during national holidays, when submitting your form.
Once your application is received, it may take up to 3 months for the Home Office to send its response.
Some applications, such as those for settlement status, may take up to 6 months to be processed and approved.
Can I extend my Leave to Remain in the UK?
If your UK visa is expiring but you continue to meet the eligibility requirements, you can apply for an extension. This procedure allows you to extend your leave to remain in the UK, and it may vary based on your visa tier.
You must apply for a UK visa extension before your current permit expires. If you overstay your visa, you will be in immigration breach, and you will face severe consequences.
In some cases, you can apply for settlement status rather than just extending your current visa. This applies to those who have spent an eligible amount of time in the UK.
To find out more about how to renew your UK visa, you can get in touch with our team of immigration experts in Manchester.
What happens if I overstay my visa?
If your visa is going to expire, you need to apply for a renewal as soon as possible. However, if your leave to remain has already expired, you have 30 days to leave the UK voluntarily. If you overstay your permit and you remain in the country, you will face severe consequences, including deportation from the UK.
At present, the Home Office usually grants a “14-day with good reason rule”. This means that you may be allowed to overstay your permit for up to 14 days if you have valid evidence of your good reasons, such as if you are waiting for your renewal application to be processed and confirmed.
If your visa has expired and you need help to remain in the UK or submit your extension application, you can seek the advice of our immigration lawyers in Manchester.
How to track your UK visa application status
Unfortunately, it is not possible to track your UK visa status online. You can check the progress of your application by either calling the Home Office or sending an email. Phone communications are available 24 hours from Monday to Friday.
It must be noted that you will be charged for both ways of enquiring.
If you wish to receive complete assistance on enquiring about the state of your case, you can speak to one of our immigration specialists in Manchester. We will handle your case and liaise with the Home Office until your UK visa application is processed and completed.
What can I do if my UK visa application is refused?
If your application is refused, you will get a letter from the Home Office explaining the reasons for the refusal. This paper will also explain all your options to either file an administrative review or submit an immigration appeal.
Before you decide how to proceed, it is advisable to speak with an immigration lawyer in Manchester.
With the help of the right professional, you will be able to apply for an administrative review or an appraisal and receive adequate legal representation.
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Any supporting document which is not written in English or Welsh must be accompanied by a certified translation. It must be noted that this service can only be provided by an authorized translation company. Your certified translator needs to confirm in writing that they have produced a “true and accurate translation of the original document”.
The Home Office will not accept any translation provided by a translation company which is not certified and approved. If you need help with your supporting document, you can seek the assistance of one of our immigration solicitors in Manchester.
If your visa application is successful, you will get a vignette on your passport. This can be replaced or transferred only if your previous identification document has expired, or if any of your personal details have changed.
If your passport has expired and you are outside the UK, you can have your vignette transferred to a new identification document by submitting an online request. This will cost £169.