There is a growing concern about the rapid spread of the coronavirus, also known as COVID-19 and its impact on UK immigration services.
Home Secretary Priti Patel confirmed on 24th March 2020:
· Visa nationals who cannot return home due to the COVID-19 pandemic will be able to extend their visa.
· This will apply to anyone whose leave expired after 24th January 2020 and who cannot leave the country because of travel restrictions or self-isolation.
· This will last until 31st May 2020, and this will be reviewed regularly if further extensions are needed.
The Home Office has temporarily permitted individuals to switch routes from within the UK. For example, an individual will switch from Tier 4 (Student) to Tier 2 (General Worker).
The UK Visa and Citizenship Application Services (UK VCAS)
Sopra Steria has advised that those suffering from coronavirus symptoms should self-isolate, and those with coronavirus must not attend their appointment.
Most pre-booked appointments are automatically re-booked at the same location, approximately in six weeks. Sopra Steria will also notify the Home Office of these changes.
UK Visas application centres (VACs) Based Abroad
VFS Global which manages visa services outside of the UK has stopped accepting applications from most countries worldwide. A full list of these countries can be found through the below link:
Immigration Tribunal Hearings
The President of the First Tier Tribunal has stated that “From 25th March 2020, there will be no face-to-face hearings listed in any centre. Application for bail and emergency work will continue to be given priority but, save in exceptional circumstances, applications and hearings will be conducted remotely”.
At Deo Volente Solicitors, we understand that individuals will be facing uncertainty relating to their immigration status, and we are happy to assist you during this difficult time. We are further offering telephone consultations to address any queries that you may have.
Please do not hesitate to contact us on 01234 350244 and speak to one of our team members within the immigration department. For more information, you can visit our website.
People rely on us, and we pride ourselves on our client-centered advocacy and representation.