Knowing that you want something, or for something to happen is easy, but like everything in life, achieving your goals can be trickier. For those looking on moving to the UK, whether to work, study, or join family members who are already there, the rules and regulations can at first appear daunting. Here however, we will look at the basics and about everything to help you achieve your immigration UK goals.
EU – In or Out? – Currently the UK is within the EU and EEA (European Economic Area). Citizens of other EU/EEA states have no requirement to obtain a visa – it is part of the freedom of movement of people. But what about people from outside of the EU?
Purpose – Having answered your nationality, the next question will be regarding your purpose i.e. why are you coming to the UK in the first place. Are you simply a tourist, visiting family, or looking for a longer stay to work, or set up a business? There are many different types of visa and they all cover different circumstances.
Visitors – If your immigration UK visit is for a holiday, or tourism purposes, or you are visiting family for a short period you will need a Standard Visitors Visa. Certain activities are not permitted under this type of Visa, and you will not be able to draw on public funds to support you.
Work – This category is split into two sub-sections – less/more than 6 months. The matter is then further complicated by the nature of the work, be it skilled, temporary or high valued (such as an entrepreneur). Each has its own further criteria to satisfy.
Study – Again there is a marked difference between periods of 6 months or less, with the latter being a short term study visa. If you are coming to study full time at a University for example, you will need a full study visa.
Joining Family – shorter visits (6 months or less) will require a family visit visa, any longer and different rules apply – and have the additional criteria of a knowledge of English test.
Marriage – If you intend to marry, then you will need a Marriage Visitor Visa and there are numerous eligibility criteria to satisfy before your application will be granted.
There are many other types of Visa including transit through the UK, and coming to the UK for medical treatment. Each has separate application processes and criteria to satisfy. Most of the application processes are rather tardy also, so it is always wise to plan well in advance – do not expect a Visa to be granted quickly or you may be disappointed.
Whatever the reasons behind your journey to the UK, there will be processes and applications to complete before your permitted entry. Quite what will happen to EU/EEA nationals post-Brexit is not yet certain but for now, at least, they get a clear run at coming to the UK.
If your goal is UK immigration from outside of the UK, then the best advice is to simply follow the procedures, plan in advance and have all of your documents and papers ready beforehand, failing which you may find yourself appealing a decision, which can add months to an already lengthy process.
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