The International Compliance and Advice team keep this section up to date with the latest relevant immigration news.

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Updated 30th November 2016

Immigration update: Statement of changes HC667

The Home Office has announced changes to the new immigration rules that were introduced in April 2016. The majority of the changes will affect applications made on or after 24 November 2016.

Here is a summary of the changes:

  • Students who have failed modules or coursework
    Students who need to extend their Tier 4 visa because they had to repeat parts of their degree programme in the past can now apply to extend their visas from within the UK.
  • Transferring to a different degree programme
    Students who intend to transfer to a new programme or have already transferred to a new programme will probably have to apply for a new Tier 4 visa from outside of the UK. If this is relevant to you, please make an appointment with an advisor in the ISA team.
  • Students doing an optional work or study placement
    Students who have added an optional work or study placement year to their undergraduate course may find their Tier 4 visa is not long enough to complete the degree. You will need to extend your visa to ensure you have enough time to complete your degree programme. You must apply to renew your Tier 4 visa from outside of the UK.
  • Overstayers – remaining in the UK after your current visa has expired
    Students who did not put in a Tier 4 leave to remain visa application on time before their visa expires will only have their application accepted if made within 14 days (instead of 28 days as in the past) of leave expiring and must provide evidence of the good reason (included in the application).  
  • Evidence submitted with a visa application
    If the person assessing your documents requests additional documentation, you will be notified only once and you will have 10 working days to submit this information. If you fail to provide all relevant documents in a series of evidence, the documents at the beginning and end of this series must have been submitted. For example, if you were submitting 5 pages of a bank statement as evidence of your finances, and page 3 was missing, you would need to have sent page 1 and 5 of that particular bank statement to be deemed as satisfactory.
From 4th November 2017

Delays in Dispatching Tier 4 In-Country Postal Decisions

In November the Home Office advised that applications submitted to UKVI's in-country casework teams are experiencing some delays at the dispatch stage. Applicants may therefore experience a short delay in receiving their decision letter and having documents returned. 

Decision letters and documents are currently being dispatched around 5 working days after the decision has been made. The service standard is eight weeks for in country postal applications.  

From the 6th April 2017

Changes to the Immigration rules

Students who wish to change their programme of study must now return home to apply for a new visa. If you have changed your course prior to the 6th of April, and subsequently you are required to extend your visa to complete your course, this rule still applies to you and you will therefore have to return home at a suitable point in your studies to extend your visa. You will need to do this before your current visa expires.

Tier 4 Telephone Scam

The Home Office have been made aware of the following scam which targets Tier 4 students whereby the student receives a telephone call from an individual who fraudulently purports to represent the Home Office.

The caller instructs the student to verify their telephone number 020 7035 4848 on the website, search for Home Office, and then scroll down to the bottom of the screen so that they can verify that the caller is calling from the genuine Home Office number.  The caller ID on the student’s mobile does show this number. 

The caller is in possession of the students full name, postcode in the UK and passport number, and asks the student to confirm those details are correct.  

They then proceed to tell the student they have not paid for an immigration service and, as a result, have to pay a fine (usually £1200 - £1520) or they will be reported to the Police/or the Home Office who will detain or deport them.   

Students who have been targeted have reported that the fraudsters become increasingly insistent and verbally aggressive resulting in them feeling coerced into making payment.

UKVI will not contact students in this manner.

For further details on all changes, please sign up to the UKCISA newsletter and check out their news wall.

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