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UK Student visas

Child Student and Student visas to the UK. Parent of a Child Student visa to the UK

Benefits of British education

First university and first schools began to appear within monasteries in the UK in 11th and 12th centuries, at the time of first Crusades and Richard the Lionheart’s ruling. Despite almost millennium-long history and legacy with carefully preserved traditions, British people continue to develop and modernise their teaching methods and set international education benchmarks.

British education is traditional and modern approaches intertwined. School and university education, as well as vocational training in the UK differ significantly from the education and training in most other countries. The main goal of British education is to bring up well-rounded individuals and give them all the knowledge necessary for successful adult life.

This explains why a lot of wealthy foreigners want their children to study in the UK. Thousands of foreign pupils and students are enrolled into British independent schools, internationally recognised colleges and universities every year.

There are three student visa categories in the UK:

  • Child Student visa
  • Student visa
  • Parent of a Child Student visa.

UK Student visas per se don’t lead to settlement, or an indefinite leave to remain (ILR), but the time spent in the UK on such visas can lead to ILR if one legally stays in the country for ten years.

High-quality education in British top independent schools and universities is a great contribution to your children’s future success in life. Imperial & Legal advisors will help you to find an appropriate educational institution and obtain a visa.

UK Child Student visa

Child Student visa is granted to children between 4 and 17 years old who enrol into one of British independent schools that have a sponsorship licence.

Requirements to obtain a Child Student visa

To get a Child Student visa, you need to submit the following documents together with your application (an exact list of the required documents depends on the chosen school and your circumstances):

  1. A valid travel document or any other form of ID with a blank page for a visa.
  2. A confirmation of acceptance from one of British independent schools. If you are enrolled into a British educational institution, you will receive a CAS, Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies. You need to get a CAS before applying for a Child Student visa. If a British independent school requires a certain level of knowledge from a foreign pupil, you will also need to obtain the required confirmation from the previous school.
  3. A consent from a parent or guardian and documents confirming your kinship, such as a birth certificate. These documents are required:
    • To apply for a Child Student visa;
    • To go to the UK and stay there.
  4. A bank statement or any other confirmation that you will have access to enough money to pay for your living and education.
  5. If your stay in the UK is sponsored by a third party, you need a written confirmation from it as well.
  6. A negative tuberculosis test for citizens of some countries.

How long does it take to get a UK Child Student visa?

The time it takes to issue a Child Student visa depends on where you apply for it. To prepare all the necessary documents on time, Imperial & Legal advisors recommend to keep to the following timelines:

  • Start preparing the paperwork six months before your course starts if you apply for a visa outside the UK. You will have to take your child to one of UK visa centres to have their photo and fingerprints taken. The Home Office will process the application and decide on your case within 3 weeks.
  • Start preparing the documents three months before your course starts if you apply for a visa inside the UK. In this case, the application will be processed within 8 weeks. You must apply before your visa expires and start your course within 28 days of your current visa expiring.

How long is a UK Child Student visa valid?

Your stay in the UK on a Child Student visa is limited by the course length and depends on the applicant’s age:

  1. If you are younger than 16 years old, a Child Student visa is valid for up to 6 years + 4 months, depending on the course length.
  2. If you are 16-17 years old, a Child Student visa is valid for up to 3 years + 4 months, depending on the course length.

What is allowed and prohibited under a Child Student visa?

With a Child Student visa, you can study in one of British independent schools.

If you are older than 16 years old, you can also work. However, working hours are strictly limited: you will be allowed to work part-time during term for up to 10 hours per week and full-time during vacations. You can also work on a work placement as part of your course, but not more than 50% of your course.

With a Child Student visa, you cannot, however:

  • Study at local authority-funded or state-funded schools
  • Enrol into a college or university
  • Get public funds
  • Take a full-time permanent job or be self-employed
  • Work as a professional sportsperson, coach or entertainer
  • Apply for settlement
  • Add parents or guardians to an application.

What do I need to know about school education in the United Kingdom?

Enrolment requirements and important aspects of education in UK schools

UK Student visa

A student visa is granted to applicants over 16 years old who plan to take a course by a licensed educational sponsor.

A student visa is for foreign high school graduates who want to study at college or university in the UK, doctors and dentists who apply for residency and students who study English and have the proficiency level above B2.

Requirements to obtain UK Student visa

To get a Student visa, you need to submit the following documents together with your application (an exact list of the required documents depends on the educational institution and your circumstances – our immigration advisors will create a list for you upon request):

  1. A valid travel document or any other form of ID with a blank page for a visa.
  2. A confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) proving that the applicant is enrolled into one of the licenced British educational institutions.
  3. A consent from a parent or guardian and documents confirming your kinship, such as a birth certificate if an applicant is younger than 18 years old.
  4. A bank statement or any other confirmation that you will have access to enough money to pay for your living and education.
  5. Results of a special English test confirming the required knowledge of English.
  6. A negative tuberculosis test for citizens of some countries.

How long does it take to get a UK Student visa?

If you are outside the UK, you can apply for a visa within six months before your course starts. The Home Office will decide on your case within three weeks.

If you are inside the UK, you can apply for a visa within three months before you start your course. The application processing will take up to 8 weeks.

You need to consider these timeframes to get your visa in time. If you apply for a visa outside the UK, it is obligatory to submit biometrics (photo and fingerprints) in a British visa centre.

You can significantly accelerate the application processing if you pay an additional fee.

How long is a UK Student visa valid for?

The stay on a Student visa is limited to the course length and depends on what study you have already completed:

  • If you are 18 and over and your course is at a degree level, you can stay in the UK on a Student visa for up to 5 years.
  • If the course is below a degree level, you can stay in the UK for up to 2 years.

When you complete your course in the UK or your Student visa expires, you can:

  • Extend your visa if you want to continue your education in the UK.
  • Switch to a Graduate visa if you have a degree and plan to stay in the UK for another two years to find a job.

To learn how long your Student visa will be valid and what should be done to extend it, visit the official website of the UK government or consult Imperial & Legal specialists.

What is allowed and prohibited under a UK Student visa?

With a Student visa, you can study at college or university, work as a student union sabbatical officer or find a job in another organisation. However, your working hours will be determined by your qualification, curriculum and sponsorship conditions. Some categories of students can add a spouse, a civil partner or a minor to their application.

On a UK Student visa, you won’t be able to:

  • Claim public funds
  • Perform some professional activity that requires a specific visa type (for example, Sportsperson visa)
  • Be self-employed
  • Study at academies or local authority-funded schools.

How to get higher education in the UK?

Main things to consider when enrolling in and studying at UK universities

UK Parent of a Child Student visa

You can apply for a Parent of a Child Student visa only if your child already has a Child Student visa, applies for it or is in the UK on a Tier 4 Child visa.

Requirements to obtain UK Parent of a Child Student visa

  1. Child being between 4 and 11 years old and studying at a British independent school.
  2. Being the only parent accompanying your child to the UK. The other parent will stay in their homeland and won’t be able to apply for a visa.
  3. A valid travel document with a blank page for a visa.
  4. Documents proving your kinship to a child (for example, a birth certificate) or guardiancy over them.
  5. Confirmation that you have enough money to support yourself and your child in the UK (for example, a bank statement).
  6. Proof that you own a house or a flat outside the UK, somewhere you go back to when your visa expires.
  7. A negative TB test (for citizens of some countries).

How long does it take to obtain Parent of a Child Student visa?

Most applications for this type of visa come from abroad. Imperial & Legal advisors recommend to factor in one to three months for visa processing.

To get a visa, you need to visit one of British visa centres in your homeland to have your photo and fingerprints taken.

How long is UK Parent of a Child Student visa valid for?

You can stay in the UK with your child till they turn 12 years old. After that, you must leave the country.

What is allowed and prohibited under Parent of a Child Student visa?

If you have a UK Parent of a Child Student visa, you can stay with your child in the UK to take care of them and bring your other children there if they have a Child Student visa or Tier 4 Child visa.

On a Parent of a Child visa, you aren’t allowed to:

  • Do a paid job
  • Study
  • Run a business
  • Apply for public funds
  • Add relatives to the application
  • Make the UK your main home
  • Switch to a different type of visa.

If you want to go to the UK to study at a university or one of British independent schools, you will most certainly need professional legal assistance. Experienced legal advisors will provide consultation explaining what documents you need to prepare and giving individual recommendations on how to apply for a visa and obtain it. Such legal support will not only accelerate visa processing, but also save your money since you won’t have to reapply and pay application fees several times.

Imperial & Legal advisors have extensive experience in helping their clients to obtain various visas to the UK and apply a comprehensive approach to resolving each particular case. With our assistance, you will get a student visa to the UK in three steps.

 

1
Contact Imperial & Legal

Timeframe: 1 day

Imperial & Legal specialists are licensed immigration advisors. A consultation can be carried out offline in an office or remotely via an audio or a video call via Zoom/Skype. During the consultation, your advisor will ask questions about your case, listen to your comments and answer all your questions. After signing a contract with our company, our experts will develop a plan of actions and start implementing it. If you haven’t chosen an educational institution yet, we will help you find the best option for you and obtain a CAS.

2
Prepare for an application

Timeframe: 1–2 weeks

Imperial & Legal immigration advisors act as your official representatives till you get a final decision from immigration authorities. Our experts will make a list of documents that will be required from you to get a student visa, have them translated into English, prepare cover letters and your application, fill in all online forms, pay application fees and submit an application. Then, we will book your appointment in one of British visa centres to submit biometrics and upload all the necessary documents into the system.

3
Get your UK student visa

Timeframe: up to 2 months

An application is processed within 3–8 weeks depending on where you submit an application. After your application is approved and you get a British student visa, you can come to the UK within a week before the course begins if the course lasts for six months or less, and within a month before the course begins if the course lasts longer than six months.
We will not only help you with a visa application but also provide complex assistance in terms of moving to the UK, including searching for accommodation, etc.

 

FAQ about UK student visa

How much is an application fee when you apply for a Student or a Parent of a Child Student visa?

The costs will depend on where you apply for a visa. If you apply for a visa remotely through one of British visa centres, an application fee will be lower:

  1. Child Student visa – £348 if you apply for it outside the UK, £475 if you apply for it inside the UK.
  2. Student visa – £348 if you apply for it outside the UK, £475 if you apply for it inside the UK.
  3. Parent of a Child Student – £516 in both cases.

If your application is rejected due to mistakes in the application form or missing documents, an application fee won’t be refunded. That’s why it is so important to get assistance from a qualified immigration advisor.

Apart from an application fee, you will have to pay an Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS). For children below 18 years old and students, it amounts to £470 for each year of stay in the UK and £624 for all other applicant categories. If your application is rejected, IHS will be refunded.

All fees are paid upon submitting your application.

How can I evaluate whether curriculum of a British independent school works for a foreign student?

To get a Child Student visa without any problems, the curriculum of a British independent school must comply with:

  1. National educational program – educational standards for state-funded schools. Independent schools must provide the same number of compulsory subjects according to the national standard. At the same time, they don’t have to stick to state programs and can offer additional subjects or teach compulsory subjects more thoroughly.
  2. Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) – standards controlling British independent schools.
  3. Regulated Qualifications Framework (RQF) (level 3 or below) that assesses independent school curriculum in terms of amount and complexity of the provided knowledge.

When you start your course in the UK, you can take a special preparatory course. It allows to improve the level of English and avoid problems with further studies.

What categories of students can bring their family to the UK?

Student visa is granted not only to those who have just finished school, but also for young scientists and doctors. You can add your spouse, partner or minor to your application, if:

  • You take a PhD course (qualification level 7 and above) that lasts for at least nine months.
  • You are sent to the UK under the government program and your study will last for more than six months.
  • You go to the UK to write your PhD thesis.

Are there any allowances for enrolling into a British university or college?

Yes, there are. Some higher educational institutions and colleges offer allowances for citizens of former British colonies.

Caribbean jurisdictions such as Antigua and Barbuda, St Lucia, Dominica, Grenada and St Kitts & Nevis, are included into this category. These countries offer citizenship by investment programs that allow all foreigners to get a second passport for a small contribution into the local economy. British educational institutions welcome both citizens who were born on the islands and those who have just obtained citizenship. What`s more, you can travel visa-free across the EU with a Caribbean passport and stay in the UK for up to six months.

Imperial & Legal offers support for Caribbean citizenship by investment programs and for a long time has been helping wealthy foreigners to get second citizenship for minimum investment. Contact our advisors to learn which universities and colleges offer allowances for applicants with a Caribbean passport.

Want to come to the UK to work, study or holiday?

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