Changes to visa requirements for international students

The Home Office announced certain changes to visa requirements for international students studying in the UK on 14 July 2015.

Fortunately, these are not affecting Higher Education to the extent that they are affecting students in Further Education. However, we are very conscious that there will be an impact on some students and want to do all we can to communicate such developments promptly and mitigate their impact when we can.

An email was sent to all Tier 4 students from the International Student Advice team last week with the main changes which are set out here for the benefits of all students.

Work rights

Changes to work rights were announced for Further Education students only.  Rights to Work have NOT changed for students in Higher Education.

However, there have been changes to work rights for dependants of Tier 4 Higher Education students.   From the Autumn, and when a new visa application is made and granted, Tier 4 dependents will be restricted to taking part-time or full-time 'skilled' work and not a low or unskilled job.

Funds required when students extend their visas

Currently, students who have been studying in the UK for 6 months or more have been able to show just 2 months of living expenses as financial evidence to extend a Tier 4 visa.

From 12 November, a student making an application to extend a Tier 4 visa will no longer benefit from this ‘established presence.’

Students will now be required to show living expenses for each month that they extend, up to 9 months. Therefore a student applying to extend for 1 year will need to show sufficient funds to cover 9 months of living expenses.  This may mean that students will need to show that they have significantly more money in their bank account, particularly if they have dependants.

The changes to established presence do NOT apply to students applying for the Doctorate Extension Scheme.

Changes to time limits

There have also been some changes to the length of time students can study in the UK and we are currently establishing the detail of this.  We will then be in touch with any students affected by this.

For details of these changes, please see: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/tier-4-visas-immigration-rules-changes

If you have any queries or concerns, please contact the International Student Advice Team or come to a drop in session: Monday – Thursday, 1.30 – 2.30pm in the Student Services Centre in 4 West.

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