COVID-19: Visa centers continue to reopen, some visa requirements updated

12 Jun 20

UNITED KINGDOM

IMPACT – HIGH

As of June 22, many visa application centres (VAC) will reopen abroad. Additionally, the government has updated visa extensions.

Application Centres:

  • The following VACs will reopen by June 22:
    • Africa: Banjul and Tunis.
    • Asia: Bandar Seri Begawan, Changsha, Chengdu, Chiang Mai, Danang, Fuzhou, Hangzhou, Hanoi, Ho Chi Minh City, Jinan, Kunming, Nanjing, Osaka, Phnom Penh, Seoul, Shenyang, Shenzhen, Tokyo, Wuhan and Xi’an.
    • Europe: Barcelona, Belgrade, Brussels, Geneva, Lisbon, Madrid and Paris.
    • Middle East: Adana, Alexandria, Amman, Ankara, Baku, Bursa, Cairo, Gaziantep, Istanbul and Izmir.
    • Oceania: Auckland.
  • For more information on which VACs are open, see the following websites:
  • As of June 1, the following UK Visa and Citizenship Application Centres have reopened: Birmingham, Birmingham Premium Lounge, Chelmsford, Croydon, Exeter, Leeds, London Mark Lane Premium Lounge, London Victoria, Manchester Fountain Street Enhanced Service Point, Manchester Premium Lounge, Sheffield and Southampton. Click here for more information.
  • Some English Testing Centres are also resuming services. Individuals are advised to visit the International English Language Testing System (IELTS)’s website, the Pearson Test of English website or the LanguageCert website, or contact their testing center for more information on reopening and how they can book their Secure English Language Test.
  • Service and Support Centres remain temporarily closed owing to COVID-19.
  • The immigration status of those who are unable to attend their appointment will not change.

Visa Extensions: 

  • Visas are extended until July 31 for those who are legally in the U.K. and whose visa expired or will expire between Jan. 24 and July 31. Those who have already had their visa extended until May 31 will have their visa automatically extended to July 31. Those whose visa is expiring between Jan. 24 and July 31 can apply to switch to a long-term visa until July 31, including those who would normally have to apply outside the U.K. Those who were planning to leave the U.K. and whose visa is expiring must contact the Coronavirus Immigration Team (CIT). Note, this only applies to those who already in the U.K. and not those who are abroad and need to extend their U.K. status.
  • Some frontline health workers and their dependents will have their visas automatically extended.

U.K. Border Exemptions:

U.K. Border rule exemptions have been extended to Scotland, and some travelers will be exempt from the new border rules, meaning they may not need to provide their journey/contact details or self-isolate for 14 days after they arrive. Self-isolation rules and penalties differ for England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland.

  • A small number of people travelling to the U.K. to maintain essential supply chains, critical national infrastructure, to contribute to crisis response or other essential government work, will not need to self-isolate or provide contact details.
  • Registered health or care professionals travelling to the U.K. to provide essential healthcare, including where this is not related to Coronavirus, must self-isolate for 14 days.
  • Frequent travelers for work who live in the U.K. but work in another country and travel between the U.K. and the country of work at least once a week; and/or live outside the U.K. but work in the U.K. and travel between their country of residence and the U.K. at least once a week, must self-isolate for 14 days. Further information can be found here.

Other Updates:

  • Those working or volunteering for the NHS as a doctor, nurse or paramedic are no longer limited to how many hours they can work, provided they are a:
    • Tier 4 student.
    • Tier 2 worker whose NHS job is a second job.
    • Visiting academic researcher.
    • Short-term visa holder permitted to volunteer.

Analysis & Comments: The response to the COVID-19 pandemic continues to develop, and Deloitte will provide additional updates as information becomes available. Please check Deloitte’s COVID-19 Digital Map, available here, for information on travel restrictions and immigration changes in other countries.

Rest of World Source: Deloitte. Deloitte refers to one or more of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”), its global network of member firms, and their related entities. DTTL (also referred to as “Deloitte Global”) and each of its member firms are legally separate and independent entities. DTTL does not provide services to clients. Please see www.deloitte.com/about to learn more. Deloitte Legal means the legal practices of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited member firms or their affiliates that provide legal services. For legal, regulatory and other reasons, not all member firms provide legal services. This includes Deloitte Tax LLP in the United States which does not provide legal and/or immigration advice or services. This communication contains general information only, and none of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited, its member firms or their related entities (collectively, the “Deloitte network”) is, by means of this communication, rendering professional advice or services. Before making any decision or taking any action that may affect your finances or your business, you should consult a qualified professional adviser. No entity in the Deloitte network shall be responsible for any loss whatsoever sustained by any person who relies on this communication.