COVID-19 Update: Concessions for Entering the UK
On 9th June 2020, the Home Office and UK Visas and Immigration released new guidance for visa applicants and temporary UK residents. If you are applying to enter the UK or remain solely for the purposes of family or private life, temporary concessions may apply to you.
These interim concessions will apply on condition that you are unable to satisfy the family Immigration Rules requirements to enter or remain in the UK because of COVID-19. If you are unable to return to the UK because of travel restrictions related to the coronavirus and your visa has expired, authorities will turn a blind eye towards a short break in your ongoing residence.
If you are due to get married:
Individuals who are on 6 months’ leave with either their fiancé, fiancée or civil partner and are awaiting to be married but cannot yet because of the pandemic can request for a visa extension.
Should individuals want a wedding ceremony to take place as soon as possible are advised to update their records with the Coronavirus Immigration Team or request for a visa extension for up to six months until 31st July 2020. This is for the purpose of allowing wedding ceremonies to take place.
If you have experienced a loss of income because of COVID-19:
Amendments have now been made to the minimum income and sufficient maintenance requirement for entering the UK.
Individuals who have had a decrease in their incomes because of COVID-19 will receive special treatment. The UK government will disregard this loss of income and only consider employment income for the duration prior to when the loss was incurred. This is subject to the condition that the minimum income and sufficient maintenance requirement was already satisfied for a minimum of 6 months up to March 2020. This also applies to self-employed individuals who will now benefit from having their loss of income disregarded between the period of 1st March 2020 and 31st July 2020.
Individuals on furloughed leave will have their income accounted for as though they are still earning 100% of their salaries.
If you cannot provide documentation:
If you cannot obtain specified documents because of reasons associated with the pandemic, the Home Office may still be able to determine your application without having to see the requested documentation.
However, if the Home Office still need to view the requested documentation then you may be asked to submit them after the date of application.
If you are unable to meet the English Language requirement:
If you were asked to take an English Language test as part of your application but you were unable to do so because your test centre was closed or you could not travel because of the coronavirus, you are eligible for an exemption.
Should you have any queries regarding the above information or if you require assistance with your visa application, please get in touch with a legal professional at Hudson McKenzie via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone +44(0)20 3318 5794.