23 March 2018
The UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) have announced that the current visa application fees will be increased at the beginning of April 2018. The UKVI have on many past occasions raised their fees between March and April annually. The new fees have been approved by Parliament and will come into force on 6 April 2018. This means that all individuals applying for a UK de facto partner or marriage visa on or after the above date will be subject to the new visa fees.
The cost of applying for a UK settlement visa from outside the UK, i.e. fiancée, unmarried partner or spouse of a British Citizen or legal permanent resident, will go up from current £1,464 to £1,523 per applicant (£59 increase). Minor dependants under the age of 18 must pay a separate visa application fee, regardless of the outcome of the principal applicant’s immigration application as the UKVI visa processing fees are non-refundable. Unfortunately, there is no option for a refund should the applicant receive an unfavourable decision.
Those who apply for further leave to remain (FLR) to switch or extend their existing partner or spouse visa from within the UK, will have to pay £1,033 (currently £993) for postal applications, or £1,643 (currently £1,583) for applications made in person at the local UKVI Public Enquiry Office (PEO). For indefinite leave to remain (ILR) applicants, the current Home Office fees have had an increase of £92, leaving sole applicants with no dependents a fee of £2,389 for single postal applications and £2,999 for premium PEO applications, respectively.
Those who opt for the same day decision can apply in person. The same day service attracts an additional fee aside from the standard application fees as listed in the categories above. Effective 6 April 2018, the cost of booking a PEO appointment in the UK for FLR and ILR applicants will increase from current £590 to £610 which includes dependent children.
Applicants in certain countries can benefit from additional user pay services, i.e. settlement priority service (10 to 15 day turnaround), walk in without an appointment, keep passport when applying. There has been an increase in these aspects of the application process. The UKVI settlement priority (fast track) service fee is set to increase to £573. As usual, this is the expedited or priority service fee per applicant, including any dependents, regardless of age and aside from the International Healthcare Surcharge (fiancée applications excluded).