Month: April 2016

CAS Request for Continuing Students

CAS Request for Continuing Students prior to attending an appointment with an Adviser, for a Tier 4 application made in the UK

If you have been at university for more than 6 months and have made an appointment to meet with an International Student Adviser in the Immigration Service to have your application checked. Please respond to any emails you receive after the appointment to ensure your CAS is generated in time ahead of your submission appointment. Please note that you will only receive your CAS once the Adviser has seen your completed application form and ALL supporting documents, including your finances, and is satisfied that these meet Home Office requirements. You should be aware that we will not assign a CAS to students who do not have valid leave to remain in the UK (you are an overstayer) and we will withdraw a CAS if we later learn that a student is or has become an overstayer.

Please note that if you have enrolled on your current course for more than 6 months and will require an ATAS certificate for your visa application. Please also state clearly in the email that you are a current student, and provide your name, Warwick I.D. number and the course you are enrolled on.Please note that if you are aware that you are in debt with the University (i.e., having course fees overdue), we will not be able to assign a CAS. Please get in touch with Student Finance team to discuss your situation and arrange payment.
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Visa Rejections and Refusals – CAS

Visa Rejections and Refusals

There is a very clear legal distinction between a rejected (invalid) and a refused application.

A refused application

A refused application is a valid application which has been processed and the Home Office have decided that the applicant fails to meet the requirements of the Immigration Rules. For example, if the applicant has not demonstrated the required level of funds in their bank account or has submitted a translation which does not meet the policy guidance requirements or has submitted a photocopy rather than an original document.

In order for the Immigration Service to offer advice to you about your refusal, we ask that you complete a formtelling us of your refusal and upload the refusal notice so we can advise you on the best course of action.

If you are in the UK you should urgently seek immigration advice from us and book an appointment to see an adviser at the earliest opportunity. If you made an in-time application, ie your visa was still valid on the date of application, then you will have appeal rights but a very short time-frame within which to exercise them – quick action will be required to ensure your stay in the UK continues to be legal. The University can help you take forward your appeal and represent you through the process as we have a Students’ Union Adviser who is appropriately qualified and competent to do this. At the Immigration Service we will talk through your options, the implications on your immigration status and enrolment at the University. If appropriate we will then refer you to the appeals specialist.

If your application was made out-of-time, ie your visa had already expired when you applied, you will not have any appeal rights and will be required to leave the UK as soon as possible – this will all be set down in the refusal letter you receive. Sometimes the Home Office retain your passport to ensure that you leave the UK. If you find yourself in this unfortunate situation please make an appointment to see an adviser as soon as possible and we will assist you with arrangements and ensure that you know what your obligations and options are.

If you are not in the UK you do not have appeal rights (other than on humanitarian grounds) but can submit an administrative review.

An administrative review is a review of the application you submitted by a differen Home Office official, no new evidence can be submitted in support of an administrative review so this is only an appropriate course of action if you believe you submitted all the correct documentation but the Home Office made a mistake in refusing you a visa. Details on how to do this are detailed in th Home Office Tier 4 policy guidance. Unfortunately administrative review can be a lengthy process so, whilst you may have a basis to make one, you may not have a decision in time to commence or rejoin your course. If this is the case you should therefore also submit a fresh visa application, or, if you have an appropriate current visa, travel to the UK and make an extension application from within the UK. If you choose this travel option you should ensure that you carry all of your supporting documents with you to show at port of entry.

If you are in a position to request an administrative review we would strongly encourage you to do this for two main reasons:

1. If you win your administrative review you will not have a refusal on your immigration record. Any refusals must be declared and explained on all future visa applications for the UK and often for visa applications for other countries.

2. If you win your administrative review whilst making a fresh application your second application fee will be refunded.

If, however, your refusal was a correct decision, then you should pay detailed attention to the refusal notice given to you which will tell you the reason(s) for refusal. If you are in a position to submit a new application with correct documentation then you should go ahead with this if you will be able to obtain your visa in time to travel to the UK. You will need a new CAS in order to make this application as your previous one will be ‘used’ and therefore no longer valid. If you are a continuing student and applied on the basis of having an established presence in the UK, please ensure that your existing UK visa has not now expired as, if it has, you will no longer qualify for established presence and will be required to show the higher maintenance level.

If there is any flexibility in your course start date your CAS will detail your ‘latest start date’ which is the latest date you should arrive at the University to start your course. As long as your fresh visa application can be processed in time for you to travel to the UK for this date then you can go ahead with this. In some cases, such as research degrees, it may be possible to negotiate a later start date and you should contact admissions to discuss this.

Please note that the Immigration Service does not have any influence over the Home Office refusal decisions nor do we have any special contacts at Embassies to overturn or rush applications through. However, if you have received a refusal which is clearly in error and you have a named Entry Clearance Officer and their contact details please forward these to us along with your refusal notice (see flow chart link above).

A rejected (invalid) application

In order for an application to be valid, it must:

  • be made on the correct form with all mandatory sections completed
  • include the correct fee
  • include photos in the correct format
  • include a passport or travel document
  • include a BRP (Biometric Residence Permit) where one has been issued (cards are only currently issued when the visa application is made in the UK)
  • involve a biometrics appointment being booked and attended by the applicant (in the UK and other countries where biometrics are captured)

Where an application is deemed invalid it will be returned unprocessed with the fee payment not taken or refunded. It will be as if an application had never been made and, if your visa has already expired, this has serious implications for your immigration status and record.

If you are in the UK you should book an appointment to see an adviser for specific advice on your options (in particular whether to re-apply from within the UK or to leave and apply for entry clearance) as this can differ depending upon the expiry date of your visa and whether this has already passed. It is very important that you are fully-aware of all the options and implications of your decision on how to proceed.

If you are not in the UK the immigration implications are not so serious, but a delay to obtaining an appropriate visa to start or return to your course could impact on you being able to take up your place on the course or to return to your course. If you do not act swiftly you may need to defer or temporarily withdraw in order to meet strict attendance requirements in compliance with the UK Visas & Immigration (Home Office) rules. You will need to resubmit your application as quickly as you can, ensuring that your CAS is still valid and that any financial documents meet the strict date requirements for your new application date. If you are a continuing student and applied on the basis of having an established presence in the UK, please ensure that your existing UK visa has not now expired as, if it has, you will no longer qualify for established presence and will be required to show the higher maintenance level.

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CAS request for offer holders joining the PEPS course

CAS request for offer holders joining the PEPS course

If you would like to request a CAS for the PEPS course, you must have applied for and been accepted on to at least term 3 (normally April to June. If you are applying for terms 1 and 2 only, you should apply for a Student Visitor visa); you must hold a Secure English Language Test showing that you have achieved at least B1 in all four components of language learning (equivalent to IELTS 4.0). If you have previously studied English language at the same level in the UK, your CAS may be slightly delayed as more information need to be sought from your academic department.

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Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)

 All international students (i.e., anyone who is from outside of the European Economic Area) requiring a Tier 4 visa to study in the UK needs a valid Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) number to make a Tier 4 visa application.

A CAS is a virtual document which confirms that an institution is willing to act as your educational sponsor. With the CAS on your Tier 4 visa application form, the Home Office UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI) caseworker who considers your visa application will have access to a database which contains your personal details, details of your proposed course of study, and details of any fees you have paid to the University.

Who assigns your CAS?

If you are going to start a new course of study at the University (or, if you started your new course of study within the last six months), your Admissions team will be responsible for providing you with a CAS (the CAS Assignment process usually starts about 3-4 months before your course start date, if you have accepted an unconditional offer then). Once you receive your CAS, you can submit your Tier 4 visa application within 3 months ahead of your course start date (for example, if your course starts on 1 October, the earliest time you can submit your Tier 4 visa application is 1 July). You are advised to apply as early as possible within this time frame, allowing sufficient time for your application to be processed.

If you are a current student and started your course more than six months ago, the Immigration Service Team will be responsible for providing you with a CAS.

What makes a CAS valid?

In order for your CAS to be valid it must:

  • Have the same details on it as in your passport; and
  • Have been assigned no more than six months before the date of your visa application; and
  • Not have been withdrawn or cancelled by the Tier 4 sponsor or the Home Office
  • Not have been used in a Tier 4 visa application which was processed and refused (where the fee was processed)

Having a CAS does not mean that you are guaranteed your application will be successful. You must meet all the requirements of a Tier 4 application, including completing the Tier 4 application form correctly and submitting all the required supporting documents.

You should also ensure that your course information (course title, start and end dates etc.) that appears on your CAS is copied exactly onto your application form.

Detailed information can be found below on how to apply for your CAS.

CAS for PEPS Students CAS request following visa refusal
CAS for Continuing Students(UK) CAS for Continuing Students(Overseas)
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Immigration Health Surcharge

Immigration Health Surcharge

 In addition to the visa application fee, from 6 April 2015 applicants will also be required to pay an immigration health charge (IHS) at the point of submitting their visa application. This is not optional and will apply to all applicants and family members applying to come to the UK as their Dependants. The charge will entitle the visa holder to free health services under the National Health Service (NHS) once inside the UK.

At present the fee is £150 per person per year and will be charged for the maximum period of leave which could be granted under the immigration rules. For example, an Undergraduate student applying for Tier 4 leave to cover a three year course would be subject to a £525 health fee (this is because such students will receive 4 additional months of leave at the end of the course, and the IHS calculation is based on the length of leave, not the length of course).

The fee will apply to all applications made after 6 April 2015, whether inside or outside the UK. Failure to pay the health surcharge will result in the application being refused or returned as invalid.

Since 5 July 2015, the IHS payment function is integrated with the Tier 4 online application form for improved user experience. We are aware of a technial glitch which may have affected some students who submitted their application on 5 and 6 July 2015. If you are affected by this technical issue, please contact the Immigration Service at for more information.

Students who are exempt from this surcharge may still need to submit the form and obtain an IHS reference number. Please check the Home Office guidance.

Students are advised to ensure that in addition to the having sufficient money available to cover the visa application fee, they will also have access to a credit or debit card which can be used to pay the health charge online. There is no requirement to hold the health fee for 28 days or to provide evidence of sufficient funds to cover the health fee in the visa application. However, students using the same account to pay the visa application fee and health charge as they are using to evidence maintenance should ensure that there is enough money available to cover everything.

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