How to Apply Dependent Visa For UK?Dr Shafiq
A dependent visa in the UK allows immediate family members of a skilled worker, student, or some other types of visa holders to stay, study, or work in the UK and access public services for the duration of their sponsor’s visa. Without the correct visa type and application process, family members won’t be able to enter and stay in the UK. So, it’s crucial to know how to apply dependent visa for UK.
Relationship with the Primary Visa Holder
To be eligible for a UK dependent visa, you must be in the following relationship with the primary visa holder:
- Spouses and civil partners in a marital relationship recognized in the UK
- Unmarried partner living together for at least two years.
- Children under 18 years of age.
- Parents aged 65 years or older and financially dependent on the sponsor.
Financial Maintenance Requirements
Dependent visa applicants must meet specific financial maintenance requirements. It ensures that the primary visa holders can support themselves and their families while staying in the UK without relying on public funds.
Dependent visa UK financial requirements vary based on the applicant’s relationship to the primary visa holder and the number of dependents they bring. For example, a spouse applying for a dependent visa must show that their sponsor has an annual income of at least £18,600 and £3,800 for each dependent child.
Age Restrictions and Considerations
There are no age restrictions on UK-dependent visa applications. However, some special considerations are there for certain applicants. For example, child dependents must be under 18 at the time of visa application. But dependent children born in the UK can remain until they turn 18, even if their sponsors’ visas expire. Dependent parents must be 65 years of age or above and financially dependent on the sponsor.
UK dependent visa applicants must submit supporting documents with their applications. The visa officers will assess these documents and decide based on them. Here are the commonly required documents you must submit:
- Passport and travel details: Applicants must submit a valid passport and any other relevant travel documents with their application form.
- Evidence of relationship: Evidence of their relationship to the primary visa holder is a must-submit document for this visa route. It can include a marriage, birth, or civil partnership certificate.
- Financial proof: Applicants must submit financial proof to show they meet the financial maintenance requirements. It includes bank statements, pay slips, or a letter from an employer.
- Health and character certifications: All applicants may also submit health and character certifications with their applications. This can include a tuberculosis test certificate and a police clearance certificate.
How to Apply Dependent Visa For UK: Application Process Step-by-Step
Step 1: Start the Online Application on the UK Government Website
The first step in the dependent visa application process is creating an account on the UK government website and filling out the online application form. The form is available on the website’s visa application portal. It is pretty long and has many fields, so you must invest some time and complete it carefully.
Step 2: Attend Biometric Appointment
After submitting an online application, you’ll receive a date for a biometric appointment. You must attend the biometric appointment for UK dependent visa at a designated visa application center to provide your fingerprints and photographs.
Step 3: Gather and Submit Supporting Documents
You must also submit several supporting documents besides the online application form. A visa officer will assess these documents to crosscheck your eligibility for the visa and see whether you meet the financial maintenance requirements.
Step 4: Pay Visa Fees and Health Surcharge
Finally, once you have submitted your online application and supporting documents, you must pay the visa fees and the health surcharge. The visa fees will vary based on the type of visa and the applicant’s age. The health surcharge is a one-time payment that helps fund the UK’s National Health Service (NHS).
Processing Time and What to Expect
Average Processing Times for UK Dependent Visa
The average processing time for a UK dependent visa is usually 24 weeks. However, it can vary based on many factors, such as the complexity of the individual application, the time of year, the country from which the application is made, and the current workload of UK Visas and Immigration.
Tracking Your Application Status
You can track the status of your UK dependent visa application process online after submitting your application to learn its current status. To do this, you must log into your account on the UK government website.
Preparing for a Possible Interview
In many cases, applicants with UK-dependent visas are invited for an interview with a UKVI officer. If you are invited for an interview, you must prepare for the interview. It can include gathering all relevant documents and preparing answers to common interview questions.
Duration and Rights of a Dependent Visa Holder
Length of Stay Permitted
The length of stay allowed on a UK-dependent visa is linked to the duration of stay of the primary visa holder. For example, if the primary visa holder is granted a two-year visa, the dependent visa holder will also be granted a two-year one.
Working and Studying Rights in the UK
Dependent visa holders can work and study in the UK. There are no restrictions on the type of work that dependent visa holders can do, except for sportspersons and coaches.
Dependent visa holders must meet the entry requirements of other international students to study in the UK. They must also show that they can support themselves financially during their studies.
Access to Public Funds and Services
Dependent visa holders enjoy all the benefits a leave-to-remain visa holder enjoys. They can access public funds and services in the UK, including education and healthcare. However, they are not eligible to receive certain benefits only British citizens can enjoy, such as income support and jobseeker allowance.
Potential Costs Involved
Several other costs are involved with the application process, such as NHS health surcharge, courier fees, and translation services charges.
Here are the costs involved with the dependent visa application:
- Visa application fees: The UK dependent visa fees is £1,846. It is payable for each dependent of the primary visa holder, including children.
- NHS Health Surcharge: The NHS health surcharge is a one-time payment that helps fund the UK National Health Service. The surcharge amount depends on the visa’s length of stay. For example, the surcharge of £1,560 for adults is for a two-year and six months visa duration. The cost is £1,175 for children under 18 years of age for the same duration.
- Additional Charges: There can be additional charges associated with the visa application process, such as translation services and courier fees. The amount will depend on your personal preferences and individual circumstances.
Common Mistakes to Avoid
Here are some common mistakes people make and ways to avoid them while applying for a UK-dependent visa:
- Incomplete documentation: Make sure you submit all the required documents, including supporting evidence. Check the UK government’s website for the latest required documents for each type of dependent visa.
- Not meeting financial requirements: You must prove that you have enough money to support yourself and your dependents without relying on public funds in the UK. The financial maintenance requirements vary based on the applicant’s relationship to the primary visa holder and the number of dependents they bring.
- Overlooking deadlines and validity periods: Do not make the mistake of submitting your application before the deadline. Also, check the validity of your passport and other required travel documents.
Switching from a Different Visa Type
When and How to Switch
You can switch to a UK dependent visa when you are already in the UK on a different visa type and meet the eligibility criteria for a dependent visa. You will have to apply online to switch to a dependent visa.
Necessary Additional Documents
You will have to submit a number of additional supporting documents while switching to the dependent visa. For example, you must submit a letter from your school if switching from a student visa.
Costs and Processing Times
You will need £1,846 to switch to a dependent visa in the UK. The processing time can vary for each applicant, but it generally takes up to 24 weeks to complete the process.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can dependents work in the UK?
Yes, dependent visa holders can work in the UK.
How long does the visa processing take?
UK dependent visa processing time takes up to 24 weeks to complete the whole process and get a decision.
What if my application gets rejected?
If your dependent visa application is rejected, you will have the right to appeal the decision.
Can I extend my dependent visa?
Yes, you can extend your UK dependent visa. But you must apply online at least 28 days before your current visa expires.
Now that you know how to apply dependent visa for UK, the whole process will be much easier for you. But, you must follow the correct steps in the application process to increase your chances of success. If you need assistance in the application process, do not hesitate to reach out to an expert.