UKVI’s new front end services – What you need to know
From the 2nd November 2018 the way you make an application for settlement, citizenship or to stay in the UK to work or study has changed. Those wishing to apply in the following categories can use the old or the new system.
· Tier 1 (Investor)
· Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent)
· Tier 1 (Entrepreneur)
· Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur)
· Tier 2 (General)
· Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer): graduate trainee
· Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer): long term staff
· Tier 2 (Minister of Religion)
· Tier 2 (Sportsperson)
· Tier 4 (General) student
· Tier 4 (Child) student
· Tier 5 (Temporary Worker)
· PBS dependent: partner
· PBS dependent: child
· Member of HM forces or their dependents
· Turkish businessperson or worker
· Dependent partner of a Turkish businessperson or worker (ECAA 3: dependent partner)
· Dependent child of a Turkish businessperson or worker (ECAA 3: dependent child)
· Settle or extend your leave in the UK: Turkish ECAA categories only
· Settle in the UK: long residence
· Settle in the UK: child
· Settle in the UK: partner of a person or parent of a child already settled in the UK
· Settle in the UK: HM forces category
· Settle in the UK: refugee or humanitarian protection
· Settle in the UK: certain categories
· British citizenship by naturalisation
· Register for British citizenship as a child under 18
· Register as a British citizen
· Update, replace or transfer: biometric residence permit
· Other leave to remain applications within the Rules (unless noted below)
- to join family members in the UK as a dependent, other than a PBS dependent, armed forces dependent or ECAA dependent
- for family reunion with a refugee or person with humanitarian protection
- on the basis of statelessness
- on the basis as a victim of domestic violence under the specific route
- making further submissions after a failed protection claim
- to only enrol your biometric information
- for a fee waiver or fee exemption
- apply for a certificate of right of abode
- apply for a registration certificate as an EEA or Swiss national
- apply for a document certifying permanent residence as an EEA or Swiss national
Some clients applying under the family or private life route, depending on their individual circumstances, may be able to use the new service. During the completion of one’s online application you will be advised about which services you are able to use. But this will only become apparent once the online application as been completed.
From the 9th November 2018 new UKVCAS centres will begin to open with all centres being open by the 30th November 2018. Sopra Steria will manage these centres. There will be 6 core service centres offering free appointments, 50 enhanced service centres offering charged appointments and 1 premium lounge. There will also be the option to purchase added value services such fast track decision-making.
Once the online application is completed the appointment letter will notify clients on how to give their biometrics and provide their supporting documentation.
Under the new service all fees will be paid online, including the Home Office fee, NHS surcharge, biometric fee and you will then be issued with a reference number and directed to the Sopra Steria’s website to book an appointment and opt for any added value services. These added value services will only be available for those using the UKVCAS services.
Clients will be able to choose an appointment within 5 working days of making the application and family members would need to attend at the same time as the main applicant. A responsible adult should accompany children under 16.
Under the new service clients can either take there supporting documentation including their passports with them to their appointment or self upload prior to the appointment. At the end of the appointment all documentation including passport will be handed back, however it is unlikely clients will be able to travel whilst their application is pending.
From January 2019 the Home Office will open dedicated service and support centres to deal with the following cases;
· some customers applying under family route
· customers applying to join as a dependant
· customers applying for family reunion
· customers applying on the basis of statelessness
· customers who qualify for a fee waiver or fee exemption
· customers applying under the domestic violence route
· those making further submissions after a failed asylum claim
· some customers who are required to only enrol their biometric information
Paper applications will be phased out eventually and all applications will need to be completed online.