One of the most significant steps after deciding to move to the UK is to start the application process for obtaining a visa. Unfortunately, many people are unable to secure a UK Visa approval because they rush into the process without carrying out much research, or by being too naïve about the application procedure. Visa applications are evaluated exclusively on the basis of the information included within them and the legitimacy of the applicant’s claims. The chances of having your visa refused is not unlikely, and applicants should always be aware of the possible consequences at the time of applying for a visa, no matter how difficult it might be to presume so.
Alternatively, if you are already living in the UK but know people who wish to move to the UK, you are allowed to have them visit you for up to six months if they are willing to apply for a Standard Visitor Visa. But, if they are your partner, they are allowed to stay for longer than six months as long as they apply for a UK Spouse Visa application from their country of residence and manage to secure the visa approval.
If you would like to learn all about the things you need to avoid when it comes to applying for a visa in the UK, read our top tips below.
Make sure you do not give inconsistent or misleading answers
All applicants need to make sure that the answers they give are consistent and truthful in relation to the visa questions. Many people try to give false answers in order to make their application more appealing, but a lot of people also so genuinely make mistakes. Some applicants may not want to mention a failed visa application from four years ago, thinking it irrelevant, but this could negatively affect the result of their application massively. All applicants have to realise that incorrect information on their application, whether it be mistakenly or deliberately, may result in a failed application and could have an adverse effect on any future applications the applicant may try to apply for.
Make sure you get your documents approved by a Home office approved translator
At some point, you will need to use documents to aid you in proving that the statements you have made in the application are factual. If your documents are not in English or Welsh, you will have to get them translated before sending them off with your application. Applications can be refused if all documents have not been properly translated. You need to make sure that all translated documents are completed by a Home Office approved translator.
For translations to be carried out within the UK, the translators should be registered with an official organisation, such as the Institute of Translation & Interpreting or the Institute of Linguists. For translations outside of the UK, the translator should be a member of an official body in their own country. Alternatively, it is okay if a relevant Foreign Embassy has certified the translation as a true copy.
Make sure you do not provide unnecessary additional information
Many people seem to assume that attaching as much additional information as they possibly can alongside their application to the UK Immigration department will always work in their favour – this is completely wrong. Unnecessarily ‘beefing up’ your application can end up in a delayed decision and more importantly; in certain circumstances, it may cause the British Embassy (outside the UK) or UK Visas and Immigration (inside the UK) to ask additional questions, and you may find that your answer to these extra questions does not help your application at all. If in doubt, please run your application via an experienced UK Immigration Consultant, who will explain to you precisely what is and what is not required to be disclosed in order to improve your chances of success.
Make sure all of your forms are up-to-date
If you send off an out of date form to UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) or a British Embassy (aka British High Commission), your application will more than likely be rejected and treated as being invalid. The Home Office (UKVI) normally gives you a ten-day correction period in which you are able to complete the correct form and get it to them. If you fail to complete the appropriate form within the ten days, your application will be sent back to you alongside a ‘notice of invalidity’, and you will be treated as if you have never submitted the application in the first place.
The best way to find out whether you are filling in the right form or not is by simply Google searching the form name and then clicking on the Gov.uk link where it links to the general page guide, to see if your form matches the form on the website.
Make sure you are able to prove your financial situation
This is one of the most common reasons that lead to the refusal of a UK Visa application. Applicants must prove that they will be able to financially maintain themselves (and any dependents) without the need to recourse to public funds, or in the case of applying for a spouse visa UK, the sponsor will have to prove within the application that they are able to maintain their spouse/partner without help from the UK government. The sponsor will have to show that they are able to support their partner financially, not including what the applicant is earning themselves.
The evidence you will have to provide to satisfy any UK Visa financial requirement is varied, meaning you will have to hand over bank statements, Tax Returns documents, P60’s and other earnings or savings documents to prove your financial situation. If there is an error in the provided documents, or you provide incomplete information, then you can expect the visa application not to be successful.
Make sure you can prove you have a sufficient command of English
All English language requirements must be satisfied by the applicant. They will need to prove that they have a sufficient command of the English Language and will need documents as proof. The UK Spouse Visa rules state the following level of English proficiency is needed to secure a visa approval:
- Spouse visa (if you are applying outside the UK) = A1 level
- FLR M (a.k.a. a spouse visa application that is being submitted from inside the UK) = A2 level
- Indefinite Leave to Remain & British citizenship = B1 level
Make sure you are not hiring incompetent and under-qualified UK immigration consultants
This may seem obvious, but you have to absolutely make sure that you hire a qualified and knowledgeable UK immigration consultant to help you avoid many mistakes when going through the application process of applying for a visa. A lot of applicants who decide that they need some form of assistance when going through the process find that they end up hiring fraudsters, who claim to be experts on UK immigration law when they actually have no authority to represent you in the matter. Many people quickly come to realise that going for the cheapest rather than the best legal help one can afford is a decision that can have dire consequences.
Make sure you are able to provide enough proof of your relationship
If you are looking to gather information on getting a UK Spouse Visa for your partner, you will need to make sure that you have sufficient proof of your relationship. If a couple fails to prove that the relationship they are claiming to have is genuine and subsisting, then they could be refused a Spouse Visa.
Many people wrongly think that refusal of their application is based on their religion, ethnicity or country of origin. Applications are judged only on the basis of the provided information’s legitimacy and authenticity. For example, if the applicant asserts that the couple is married, but the provided evidence shows that they live at two different addresses, then the application will be refused. Tax records, Electoral Roll and other documents are required only to cross-check the provided information.
Moving to the UK is a big decision for you and for your family, no matter whether you are moving for a partner or just moving on to the next chapter in your life. You, therefore, have to make sure your application for a UK Visa is completed to the best of your ability and gives the Home Office no reason to reject your application. Be open, honest, and make sure that you give all of the required information, presented in the way it has been asked to be presented.
If you ever feel confused or uncertain about exactly what is needed during the application process, then do not hesitate to hire a qualified UK immigration consultant to help you through the process in order to make the experience as painless as possible, and greatly improve your chances of getting your UK Visa application accepted so you can move to the UK as planned.