A Guide to the UK Tourism, Leisure & Family Visit Visa - Part Two
This is the second part of a practical guide to applying for a Tourism, Leisure and Family Visit Visa. It will address a number of frequently asked questions.
Please follow this link to Part One.
Can I Bring Family With Me on a Tourism, Leisure and Family Visit Visa?
There are no restrictions on family members applying at the same time for a Visit Visa and there is no age limit. Each Applicant will need to complete a full online application form; this applies whatever the age of the Applicant.
Additional Requirements for Child Applicants
Child applicants must, in addition, show that there are adequate arrangements for their travel, reception and care whilst they are in the UK, paragraph V5.1 of Appendix V.
Further, if the child is not accompanied in travel by their parent or legal guardian, based in the home country or the country of ordinary residence, who is responsible for the care, the parent or guardian will need to consent to the travel, reception and care in the UK. When this consent is requested it must be given in writing, paragraph V5.1 of Appendix V.
Where a child applies to come to the UK as a visitor or extend, they are not expected to hold funds in their own name. They may meet the requirement by relying on a parent or third party. Caseworker guidance confirms that if an unaccompanied child travels to the UK, they should be asked at the border as to how they intend to fund their visit.
Can I Extend My Visit Visa Once in the UK?
Appendix V does allow for extension applications in certain circumstances. You may need to apply to extend a long-term multiple entry Visit Visa if you want to stay longer than the expiry date of the visa. Applications must be made before leave expires and will only be extended to complete a 6 month period. It is also possible to extend a single entry or 6-month visa to complete 6 months’ in the UK as a visitor. You will need to ensure all other requirements continue to be met.
The guidance gives the following example:
“For example, a visitor arrives in January and their long-term visit visa is due to expire in February. Provided the visitor meets the Rules, they can extend for up to 6 months, until June, as a Standard visitor.”
Current Processing Times for a UK Visit Visa – How Long Do I Need to Wait?
Processing times will depend on a number of factors and until recently visit visas took 3 weeks to process but are currently taking on average 6 weeks. The government website currently reads:
‘We are working hard to process applications to get back to the 3-week service standard’.
The application waiting time starts once you attend a biometric appointment and waiting time ends when you receive a decision.
When Can I Make My Visit Visa Application?
It is possible to select a travel date up to 3 months in advance of planned travel.
What If my Visit Visa Application is Refused?
If your visit visa application is refused there is no right to administrative review or appeal, unless in exceptional and limited circumstances where a human rights claim has been made and refused. The form does not ask an Applicant to confirm if a human rights claim is being made. The Entry Clearance Officer will need to consider this and identify this if refusing, but ultimately it is for the Tribunal to determine whether there is jurisdiction to hear an appeal.
If refused you may consider making a fresh application if there is a basis to do so, for example you realise you could provide further evidence to explain the matter in issue.
You may consider whether to challenge the decision by way of judicial review. The Court expects to see the parties to undertake the Pre-Action Protocol procedure before commencing proceedings in order to try and resolve the matter or matters in dispute. Failure to follow this Protocol may have legal consequences particularly in relation to costs. You may wish to seek professional advice before considering whether to challenge a refusal in this way as it is not usually possible to introduce further evidence during this procedure.
Application fees have recently increased. At the time of writing and from 6 April 2022 the fees for a visit visa application are as follows:
Visit visa – short up to 6 months £100
Visit visa – long up to 2 years £376
Visit visa – long up to 5 years £670
Visit visa – long up to 10 years £822
Visitor Extension £1,000
Can I Work or Claim Public Funds on a Visit Visa?
Prohibited activities are set out in paragraph V 4.4., you should read and check carefully.
An Applicant must not intend to work in the UK unless the activity is included in Permitted Activities, Appendix Visitor: Permit Free Festival List or the Permitted Paid Engagements in V 13.3.
You can undertake activities relating to your employment overseas, but your main purpose should be tourism, leisure or to visit family. The guidance confirms that Applicants may for example respond to emails or answer phone calls. It is also possible to attend a job interview or to look for employment, but you will need to leave the UK in order to apply for the appropriate entry clearance in order to commence that work and will need to ensure there is a route available. If an Applicant seeks entry to attend a job interview they must satisfy anyone examining them of this fact.
Paragraph V 4.4. defines work as follows:
(i) taking employment in the UK; and
(ii) doing work for an organisation or business in the UK; and
(iii) establishing or running a business as a self-employed person; and
(iv) doing a work placement or internship; and
(v) direct selling to the public; and
(vi) providing goods and services,
Any grant will be subject to the condition not to access public funds or work, without prohibiting the permitted activities or Permitted Paid Engagements (Paragraph V 17.1).
Do I Need to Satisfy An English Language Requirement?
You do not need to satisfy an English language requirement in order to obtain a visit visa.
Additional Requirements and Separate Categories
There are separate categories for those studying, accessing medical treatment and getting married or forming a civil partnership or giving notice to do so. You must consider the purpose of your visit before making the appropriate application and ensure it reflects your relevant intentions. You may wish to seek advice in this regard to ensure you are making the appropriate application and all requirements can be met and demonstrated through the evidence.
Contact Our Immigration Lawyers in London
For expert advice and assistance with a visit visa application, contact our immigration barristers on 0203 617 9173 or complete our enquiry form below.