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Visit Visas

The Standard Visitor visa covers the following:

  • Family Visitor visa
  • General Visitor visa
  • Child Visitor visa
  • Business Visitor visa, including visas for academics, doctors and dentists
  • Sports Visitor visa
  • Entertainer Visitor visa
  • Prospective Entrepreneur visa
  • Private Medical Treatment Visitor visa
  • Approved Destination Status (ADS) visa

If you visit the UK on business

You can apply for a Standard Visitor visa if you want to visit the UK for business-related activities, for example:

  • you’re coming to the UK for a conference, meeting or training
  • you want to take part in a specific sports-related event you’re an artist, entertainer or musician and coming to the UK to perform
  • are an academic and are doing research or accompanying students on a study abroad programme
  • you’re a doctor or dentist and are coming to the UK to take a clinical attachment or observer post
  • you want to take the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board (PLAB) test or sit the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE)
  • you want to get funding to start, take over, join or run a business in the UK

Speak to our assessment team now to confirm your eligibility and options for free on 0203 384 4389.

Further Information

What you can and cannot do

You can:

  • take part in any of the business-related activities mentioned in the Visitor Rules
  • study for up to 30 days as long as it’s not the main reason for your visit take part in an exchange programme or educational visit (if you’re under 18)
  • convert your civil partnership into a marriage
  • pass through the UK in transit (on your way to another country)

You cannot:

  • do paid or unpaid work live in the UK for long periods of time through frequent visits get public funds marry or register a civil partnership, or give notice of marriage or civil partnership.

How long it will take

The earliest you can apply is 3 months before you travel. Example:

You can apply from 16 March if you plan to travel on 15 June.

You should get a decision on your visa within 3 weeks.

How long getting a visa might take varies depending on the country you’re applying from.

How long you can stay

You can usually stay in the UK for up to 6 months.

You might be able to stay for longer if:

  • you’re coming to the UK for private medical treatment – up to 11 months you’re an academic on sabbatical and coming to the UK for research – you, your spouse or civil partner may be able to stay for up to 12 months
  • If you’re staying in the UK as an academic or to receive private medical treatment for longer than 6 months, you must apply for a biometric residence permit

If you need to visit the UK regularly

If you need to visit the UK regularly over a longer period, you can apply for a long-term Standard Visitor visa that lasts 2, 5 or 10 years. You can stay for a maximum of 6 months on each visit.

If you’re under 18 years old when you apply your long- term Standard Visitor visa will only be valid for up to 6 months after you turn 18.

Eligibility

You must always show that:

  • you’ll leave the UK at the end of your visit you’re able to support yourself and any dependents for the duration of your trip you’re able to pay for your return or onward journey and any other costs relating to your visit you have proof of any business or other activities you want to do in the UK, as allowed by the Visitor Rules.

If you’re applying for a long-term Standard Visitor visa You must prove that:

  • you’ll only ever need to come to the UK to visit, for example to go on holiday, see family or attend a meeting you plan to leave the UK at the end of each visit
  • You may be given a visa for a shorter period than requested if you do not do this. You will not get a refund of the application fee if you get a shorter visa or your application is refused.
  • Your visa may be cancelled and you may get a long-term ban on visiting if your travel history shows you’re repeatedly living in the UK for extended periods.

If you’re applying as an academic

  • You can stay in the UK for 12 months if you’re applying as an academic. You must prove you’re highly qualified within your field of expertise, on sabbatical leave from your home institution and visiting to either:
  • take part in a formal exchange with a UK counterpart carry out your own research
  • take part in someone else’s research, teaching or clinical practice – as long as this does not involve filling a permanent teaching post

If you’re applying to visit for private medical treatment You must prove that you:

  • have a medical condition that needs private consultation or treatment in the UK have made or paid for arrangements for consultations or treatment have enough money to pay for your treatment, support yourself without using public funds and pay for your return or onward journey will leave the UK once your treatment is completed, or when your visa expires are not a danger to public health if you’re suffering from an infectious disease, such as leprosy

If you’re applying as an organ donor You can only visit the UK to donate organs to:

  • a family member who you’re genetically related to (for example your sibling or parent) someone you have a close personal relationship with (for example your spouse or friend)
  • You must prove that the person you’re donating an organ to is legally allowed to be in the UK.

Documents You Must Provide

When you apply you’ll need to provide a current passport or other valid travel identification.

  • You need a page in your passport that’s blank on both sides for your visa. Your passport must be valid for the whole of your stay in the UK.
  • You’ll also need to provide a certified translation of any documents that are not in English or Welsh.
  • You might need to provide additional documents if you’re visiting the UK:
  • for private medical treatment to apply as an organ donor as an academic on sabbatical and want to stay for 12 months as a prospective entrepreneur to take the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board (PLAB) test or sit the Objective Structured Clinical Examination (OSCE) in transit to a country outside the UK, Ireland, Isle of Man and the Channel Islands

Where to send your documents

  • You’ll be told where to send your documents when you apply.
  • Any original documents you submit as part of your application will be sent back to you.

Other information you’ll need You’ll need to provide the following: the dates you’re planning to travel to the UK details of where you’ll be staying during your visit how much you think your trip will cost your current home address and how long you’ve lived there your parents’ names and dates of birth how much you earn in a year You might also need: details of your travel history for the past 10 years (as shown in your passport) your employer’s address and telephone number your partner’s name, date of birth, and passport number the name and address of anyone paying for your trip the name, address and passport number of any family members you have in the UK details of any criminal, civil or immigration offences you have committed

If you're under 18

You can apply for a standard visitor visa if you’re under 18 and:

you’ve made suitable arrangements for your travel and stay in the UK you have consent from your parent or guardian to travel to the UK you’re able to pay for your return or onward journey you have enough money to support yourself without working or getting help from public funds, or you have family and friends that can support you

Travelling alone

  • You can travel to the UK without an adult (someone over the age of 18).
  • Your parent or guardian will need to provide their:
  • written consent for you to travel to the UK full contact details
  • They’ll also need to provide proof that you have somewhere suitable to live during your stay in the UK, including:
  • the name and date of birth of the person that you will be staying with an address where you will be living details of your relationship to the person who’ll be looking after you consent in writing so they can look after you during your stay in the UK

Travelling with an adult

When travelling to the UK with an adult (someone over the age of 18), you’ll need to identify them in your visa application.

  • If the person you’re travelling with is not your parent, you’ll need to provide specific information about them in your application.
  • Their name will appear on your visa, and you’ll be refused entry to the UK if you arrive in the UK without them.
  • You can identify up to 2 adults in your visa application, and your visa will only be valid if you travel with at least one of them.
  • The adult can apply for a visa at the same time, but you must each complete separate applications.

Extend your visa

You may be able to extend your visa as long as the total time you spend in the UK is less than 6 months. For example if you apply for a 3 month visa, you can apply to extend it for 3 more months. You should apply before your current visa expires.

If you’re receiving private medical treatment in the UK you can apply to extend your visa for a further 6 months if you:

  • have paid for any treatment you’ve already had in the UK can and will pay the further costs of your treatment continue to meet the eligibility requirements. You must also get a medical practitioner or NHS consultant who’s registered in the UK to provide:
  • proof of arrangements for your private medical consultation or treatment a letter saying how long your treatment is likely to take details of the progress of your treatment, if it’s already started

Eligibility

You must apply while you’re still in the UK.

How long it takes:

  • within 8 weeks for postal applications usually on the same day if you use the premium service
  • You’ll be contacted if your application is complex and will take longer, eg:
  • if your supporting documents need to be verified if you need to attend an interview because of your personal circumstances (for example if you have a criminal conviction)
  • Once you’ve applied you can stay in the UK until you’ve been given a decision, as long as you applied before your last visa expired.

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What is the benefit of using UK Immigration Solicitors?

Immigration rules are complex and subject to regular changes and revisions. This itself presents problems as it is the applicant’s responsibility to ensure they are aware of and have complied with any changes to the routes, processes and evidence requirements. 

Failure to meet strict rules is likely to result in the application being refused which, in turn, is likely have an emotional and financial strain on you and your family. 

It is our job to ensure we are fully aware of the latest immigration rules, policies and procedures. We don’t leave matters to chance. Once you become a client of ours, we explain our strategy and tell you exactly how we propose to get you the right result. We will pinpoint the positives and negatives of your circumstances and explain where issues may arise and what would need to be done to fix them. We provide step by step guidance and advice throughout the entire process professionally. Our vast experience allows us to foresee problems before they arise and pro-actively adopt a strategic action plan.

Our legal fees are always agreed and fixed with you right at the beginning of your case, so you have complete peace of mind and control over the costs to ensure there are no restrictions or unpleasant surprises.

There are many online agencies, advisors and marketing companies who claim to be immigration experts but, provide very little expertise.

Let us be very clear here, if you are paying for someone just to fill in the forms for you, you should think about how you can put that money to better use and avoid gambling with your future by using inexperienced and ineffective companies.

We are a fully regulated nationwide, multi award winning law firm that specialises in immigration. Having more than 60 years of combined expertise and having handled more than 8,000 cases we have unrivalled experience and expertise to ensure you get the right result first time around – Don’t take our word for it though, check out our reviews to see why our clients trust us with their futures. We are rated 5* across the board and 98% of our clients have confirmed that they would recommend us to others. *

We have illustrated our typical scope of service below so you can understand what we do for you as paid of our service:

 

  • Our immigration specialists carry out a free detailed assessment with you to understand your circumstances and needs.
  • The collated information is then reviewed by a senior immigration solicitor who will have no less than 8 years’ immigration experience.
  • Based on the information collected, the senior solicitor will then confirm what your options are and will also confirm if we are able to help you.
  • We will offer you an Agreed Fixed Fee quotation for us to handle your entire case until initial conclusion without obligation. 
  • If we have officially taken your instructions, we will create a client file for you and collect detailed initial information.
  • We will then ensure you receive a personalised one-to-one legal consultation with a senior immigration solicitor who will take your full instructions by exploring your circumstances in detail and advise you on the best way to meet your objectives. The solicitor will explain the relevant legislations and provide you with advice on the steps that we would need to take to get a successful result.
  • The senior solicitor who carried out your legal consultation will then send you detailed written legal advice explaining everything that needs to be done and which documents will be required as part of the process. We will tell you about any problem areas and formulate a strategy to overcome/mitigate these. 
  • We will carefully review any documents that you have provided in support of the application. These documents are then validated and formatted to ensure that they meet the UKVI specified evidence requirements. Where they do not, we will explain what needs to be done to address the issues.
  • Where required, we will prepare any necessary written legal arguments or representations that are required to support your application and gain an approval. Often, we may be required to make discretionary submissions.
  • We will complete a draft application and share this with you to ensure that all parties are happy with the representations that will be submitted to the Home Office.
  • We advise you on what application processing routes are available. In some cases, there are fast track or premium processing routes available. We may be required to book a Home Office appointment on your behalf.  Will also be able to confirm typical processing times for any processing centre in the world. We explain all options, routes and fees comprehensively allowing you to make the best choice.
  • We lodge the application on your behalf using our secure authenticated processes. Whilst your application is pending, we continue to ensure you receive maximum legal protection and ensure that your rights and allowances are upheld throughout the processing stage. We ensure that you are aware of and remain compliant with the immigration rules and regulations during this period. We will also keep you updated on the progress of your matter.
  • If any follow up work is required in response to any queries raised by the UKVI, we will also deal with these as part of the comprehensive service.
  • We secure a decision on your matter and further advise you on the relevant implications of that decision. If required, we will also confirm if any secondary applications are required and brief you on the necessary process and procedure for those also.

Why should I use UK immigration solicitors to help me?

Here are just some of the reasons to choose us:

 * We are the UK’s #1 Immigration Specialist Law Firm

* We are a fully SRA regulated law firm so you are working directly with our in house legal team

* No agencies, middlemen or outsourcing

* We have achieved 99% success rate across all application types

* We have a 24 hour helpline that operates 7 days a week – 365 days a year

* We have multiple offices across the UK but 90% of our clients are not required to visit in person

* We have more than 60 years combined immigration expertise

* Our team have handled more than 8,000 cases

* We offer a free initial assessment which will explain your options and check your eligibility for your chosen route

* We operate a 100% Agreed Fixed Fee model with all fees fixed and agreed before work is started

* 98% of our clients would recommend us to family & friends

* Our average rating is 4.6/5 across major review platforms (based on over 300 reviews).

What is a free needs assessment?

If you have an immigration related problem or question, you can have a free assessment with a member of our assessments team.

The assessor will establish why you are calling and what you are looking for assistance with. The assessor will ask you a series of questions to determine your circumstances in relation to your objectives.

The assessment is 100% private and confidential. As we are a private law firm, we work with our clients to overturn Government decisions daily. We do not share any information with any third party.

Although the assessor will be a trained immigration specialist, they are not solicitors and therefore will not give you detailed legal advice or guidance.

If you want to establish what your options are and the best way forward for you, your assessor will collate the necessary information and then speak with one of the resident senior solicitors at the firm to determine what your options are, if and how we could assist and confirm whether we would be prepared to take your case. If we can assist, you will be provided with an Agreed Fixed Fee quotation which is a single legal fee to cover the firms cost of representation agreed from the outset and binding for all parties.

The free assessment is no obligation and you are merely given clarity on your position and options to move forward.

If you have a complex matter or require legal advice regarding a specific issue, you will most likely require a legal consultation.

This is a separate service and is chargeable at the prevailing rates.

Please note, UK Immigration Solicitors are a private law firm and are not part of the Government. We do not accept legal aid instructions. Although we are happy to assist genuine callers, we are not a directory service and sadly are unable to provide you with Government telephone numbers.

To get started you can either call us on 0203 384 4389 or complete the assessment form and one of the team will call you

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