Effects of Coronavirus on the UK Immigration Process?

Travellers Boarding Plane With Masks

The coronavirus pandemic has affected almost every country in the world. Apart from the medical issues, its spread has managed to affect economies and businesses worldwide, as governments struggle to handle the virus’s spread. Despite the vaccines coming in, almost everyone is wondering what recovery would look like.

The UK has been one of the most impacted countries as far as the coronavirus repercussions are concerned. Restrictions on the global movement foisted by the governments are creating serious immigration law challenges for the employers and sponsoring universities of the UK.

In early 2020, the UK home office introduced manifolds of relaxations like extended visa, even if a visa is expired, to cater to these challenges. However, by the end, many of the concessions came to an end. Individuals can no longer extend their visas automatically and will have to take all important measures to leave the UK or to apply to arrange their stay in the UK.

The UK visa application offices are now ready to accept new bookings, though the appointment availability is scarce.

The in-country priority service has also commenced accepting applications. The priority service allows the applicants to accelerate visa processing for some extra fee and hear from them with a decision within five days.

COVID Visa Concession Scheme (CVCS) for UK Visa Holders Who are Stranded Abroad

The UK visa holders who are not in the UK and have not been able to return to their native place because of the pandemic travel restrictions and the visa is expired or due to expire are now eligible to request the Home Office for a visa to be issued to return.

This relaxation applies to the individuals who left the UK before the 17th of March 2020 and the people who had, or are willing to apply for, “leave on an eligible route”.

An eligible route is something where, if the individual was already in the UK. They would be eligible to extend their leave, move into a divergent immigration path, or apply for Indefinite Leave.

If a visa holder does not meet the required eligibility criteria, the Home Office will consider only those who are having a good reason for leaving the UK after the 17th of March. The decision would be taken on a case-by-case basis.

Applying for a UK Visit Visa

In case one wishes to apply for a visit visa from a country where travel to the UK is not allowed, then the decision may take a longer time. In case the application is accepted, the visa will be granted once the suspension is lifted. In case the travel is urgent, then one will have to write to “Coronavirus Immigration HelpCare” for guidance.

Mandatory Requirement

Due to COVID-19, all the passengers must submit an online “passenger locator form” within 2 days before their travel to the UK. The form provides a journey and contact details. Individuals who fail to provide the form before arriving may be delayed/refused to enter the UK.

All travellers must show a negative COVID-19 test before travelling to the UK. The test must be conducted 3 days before departure. Passengers will also have to show the results when they reach the UK.

All passengers coming to the UK are required to quarantine themselves for 10 days, regardless of their COVID-19 test results.

How Can Osbourne Pinner Help?

With such a huge shift in immigration laws and rules due to COVID – 19, it would be very challenging for an individual to know and abide by all the rules and legal formalities while applying for a visa so that the process is hassle-free. We at Osbourne Pinner make sure that your work is done within the time frame and with the utmost professionalism. With the UK immigration consultancy that is second to none, you can be sure that your file is in good hands.

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