Month: December 2016

IHS refund

1:Overview 2:When you need to pay
3:How much you have to pay 4:Pay the healthcare surcharge
5:Refunds

You don’t need to do anything to get an IHS refund – it’s automatically paid to the account or card you paid with.

You’ll get a full IHS refund if:

  • you paid twice
  • your visa application is refused
  • you withdraw your visa application

You’ll get a partial IHS refund if your visa application’s successful but:

  • you get less time on your visa than you asked for
  • any dependants on your visa application are refused

You won’t get a refund if your visa application’s successful but you don’t come to the UK or you leave before your visa ends.

How long it takes

You usually get your refund within 90 days of getting a decision on your visa application. It can take longer if you appeal or ask for an administrative review after your visa application is refused.

If you appeal or ask for an administrative review

If you applied from:

  • inside the UK – you’ll get your refund up to 90 days after your appeal or administrative review is dismissed
  • outside the UK – you’ll get your refund up to 90 days after your visa application is refused

You’ll have to repay the IHS if your appeal or administrative review is successful and you’ve already got your IHS refund.

Contact UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) if your refund isn’t paid within 90 days.

Pay the healthcare surcharge

1:Overview 2:When you need to pay
3:How much you have to pay 4:Pay the healthcare surcharge
5:Refunds

If you’re making an immigration application online you pay the healthcare surcharge as part of the application process. You must complete the payment and return to the online immigration application in less than 30 minutes.

If you’re making an immigration application at a premium service centre, you pay the surcharge when you book an appointment.

If you’re making an immigration application by post you must pay the healthcare surcharge before you complete your application.

You must pay the healthcare surcharge by debit or credit card.

If you’re applying online or through the premium service centre, you’ll be asked for:

  • your start and end dates on your certificate of sponsorship
  • your course dates if you’re applying as a student

If you’re applying by post, you’ll also be asked for:

  • the type of visa you’re applying for
  • your passport or travel document number
  • an email address

You need to pay by cash at the UK embassy if you’re in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea. You can pay in cash at an embassy or visa application centre if you’re in Nepal, or use the online service.

Family members

You’ll need the same information that you used to pay for:

  • any person applying for a visa or other immigration application with you, eg a dependant
  • any person you’re applying to join or remain who is already in the UK (you don’t need to add this person’s details if they are a UK or EEA citizen)

You’ll also need their leave expiry date if you’re joining someone in the UK (or IHS reference number if they have one).

Finish your visa or immigration application

  1. You’ll be sent an email with an IHS reference number. This will also be shown on screen when you’ve paid.
  2. You’ll need to write this on the cover of your visa application if you’re applying by post. You need this reference even if you’re exempt from paying the healthcare surcharge.
  3. Finish your application form and pay your visa or immigration application fee.

How much you have to pay

1:Overview 2:When you need to pay
3:How much you have to pay 4:Pay the healthcare surcharge
5:Refunds

You’ll have to pay:

  • £150 per year for a student or Tier 5 (Youth Mobility Scheme) visa, eg £300 for a 2-year visa
  • £200 per year for all other visa and immigration applications, eg £1,000 for a 5-year visa

Dependants usually need to pay the same amount as you.

The exact amount you have to pay depends on how much leave you’re granted. Calculate how much you’ll have to pay before you apply.

You’ll pay half of the yearly amount if your application includes part of a year that is less than 6 months.

You’ll pay for a whole year if you’re application includes part of a year that is more than 6 months.

Your visa or immigration application won’t be granted if you don’t pay the healthcare surcharge or your application will be delayed if you don’t pay the right amount.

You’ll automatically get a partial refund if you paid the healthcare surcharge for more years than you were granted leave.

When you have to pay

If you’re applying for a visa online or through the premium service centre, you’ll pay the surcharge as part of your application or when you book an appointment.

If you’re applying for a visa by post, you must pay the healthcare surcharge online before you send your application – you’ll need to include the IHS reference number on your application form.

You’ll be contacted by UK Visas and Immigration if you didn’t pay the surcharge (or didn’t pay enough) as part of your visa or immigration application.

Your visa or immigration application will be turned down if you don’t pay the full amount:

  • within 10 working days if you’re inside the UK
  • within 7 working days if you’re outside the UK

When you need to pay

1:Overview 2:When you need to pay
3:How much you have to pay 4:Pay the healthcare surcharge
5:Refunds

For visa applications made outside the UK, you’ll have to pay if:

  • you’re a national of a country outside the European Economic Area (EEA)
  • you’re applying for a visa to work, study or join your family in the UK for more than 6 months (but you’re not applying to remain in the UK permanently)

For immigration applications made from within the UK, you’ll have to pay if:

  • you’re a national of a country outside the EEA
  • you’re making an immigration application for any length of time, including applications for 6 months or less (but you’re not applying to remain in the UK permanently)

You’ll still need to pay even if you have private medical insurance.

When you’ll need an IHS reference number

You still need to use the payment service to get an immigration health surcharge (IHS) reference number but you won’t need to pay if:

  • you’re applying for a Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer) visa (or you’re their dependant)
  • you’re a child under 18 who has been taken into care by a local authority
  • you’re the dependant of a member of the UK’s armed forces
  • you’re the dependant of a member of another country’s forces who is exempt from immigration control
  • you’re a relevant civilian employee employed by North Atlantic Treaty Organisation (NATO) or the Australian Department of Defence in the UK (or you’re their dependant)

The service will tell you that you don’t have to pay anything and will give you your healthcare surcharge reference number for your application.

You’ll be able to use the National Health Service (NHS) even if you’re exempt from paying.

When you don’t have to pay or get an IHS reference number

You don’t need to get an IHS reference number or pay the healthcare surcharge if:

  • you’re applying for a visitor visa
  • you’re applying for a visa (from outside the UK) for 6 months or less
  • you’re applying for indefinite leave to remain
  • you’re a diplomat or a member of a visiting armed forces and not subject to immigration control
  • you’re a family member of a European national with European Union treaty rights
  • you’re applying for a visa for the Isle of Man or Channel Islands
  • you’re a British Overseas Territory citizen resident in the Falkland Islands
  • you’re an asylum seeker or applying for humanitarian protection (or you’re their dependant)
  • you’ve been identified as a victim of human trafficking (or you’re their dependant)
  • the Home Office’s domestic violence concession applies to you (or you’re their dependant)
  • being made to leave the UK would be against your rights under Article 3 of the European Convention of Human Rights (or you’re their dependant)

You’ll be able to use the National Health Service (NHS) if you’re exempt from paying – except if you’re on a visitor visa or any visa that will only last for 6 months or less (that you applied for from outside the UK). You’ll have to pay for care you get through the NHS at the point you use it.

You’ll have to pay the healthcare surcharge if you applied for indefinite leave to remain but are only given limited leave. You’ll be told by UK Visas and Immigration if this happens.

Overview

1:Overview 2:When you need to pay
3:How much you have to pay 4:Pay the healthcare surcharge
5:Refunds

You may need to pay a healthcare surcharge (called the ‘immigration health surcharge’ or IHS) as part of your immigration application.

If you’re applying online or through the premium service centre, you’ll pay the surcharge as part of your application or when you book an appointment.

If you’re applying by post, you must pay the healthcare surcharge online before you send your application – you’ll need to include the IHS reference number on your application form.

Your information will be shared with the National Health Service (NHS) in England if:

  • you’ve paid the healthcare surcharge (or are exempt from paying it)
  • your visa or immigration application is granted

You’ll then be able to use the NHS. You’ll still need to pay for certain types of services, eg prescriptions, dental treatment and eye tests.

You should bring your biometric residence permit with you when you access healthcare in the UK.

Visitor visas and short-term visas

You don’t have to pay the healthcare surcharge if you’re applying from outside the UK for a visitor visa or any visa that lasts 6 months or less.

You don’t need to use the healthcare surcharge service or get an IHS reference number for your visa application. Instead, you’ll have to pay for any healthcare you get through the NHS at the point you use it.

Ask for a court hearing

1:Overview 2:Ask for your things back
3:Ask for a court hearing

Send a ‘notice of claim’ if you think it was illegal for customs to seize your things, eg you brought in alcohol or tobacco for your personal use.

A seizure is legal if you break the rules on bringing or receiving things from abroad.

You’ll have to go to court – if you win your claim, you’ll get your things back. If they’ve already been disposed of, you can ask for compensation.

You may have to pay court costs if you don’t win your claim.

Sending a notice of claim

Follow the example notice of claim or write your own. You’ll need to include:

  • the seizure reference number on the notice you got from customs
  • your name and address
  • a list of the things you think customs was wrong to seize – include details, eg quantities and brands
  • proof of ownership if your vehicle was seized
  • why you think it was illegal for customs to seize your things

Notice 12A gives detailed guidance about making a claim and what happens in a court hearing.

If Border Force seized your things

Send your notice of claim to Border Force’s post seizure unit.

National post seizure unit
Border Force
3rd Floor
West Point
Ebrington Street
Plymouth
PL4 9LT

If HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) seized your things

Send your notice of claim to HMRC specialist investigations.

HM Revenue and Customs
Specialist investigations
Appeals and reviews team S0777
PO Box 29992
Glasgow
G70 6AB

Check the notice or letter you got from customs if you don’t know who seized your things. Contact HMRC if you need a copy of the notice.

Deadline

Your notice of claim must be received by HMRC or Border Force within a month of your things being seized.

Your things are usually kept until your claim is decided, unless they’re perishable, eg food.

Get legal help

You can appoint someone (eg a solicitor) to deal with your claim and represent you in court.

Send an agent authority form with your notice of claim.

Call us today on 0207 237 3388 or complete our visa assessment form, by clicking here

If you live outside the European Union

You must appoint a UK solicitor to handle your claim and represent you in court if you live outside the European Union (EU).

Send an agent authority form giving the solicitor’s details with your notice of claim.

Ask for your things back

1:Overview 2:Ask for your things back
3:Ask for a court hearing

You can ask for your things back (make a ‘restoration request’) even if you agree customs was right to take them.

If you think you should get your things back because you didn’t break the rules (eg you brought in alcohol for your own use) you must ask for a court hearing instead of making a restoration request.

If your request is accepted, you can get your things back but you may have to pay a fee and any duty you owe.

You may be offered compensation if your things have already been destroyed or sold.

Making a request

Follow the example letter or write your own.

You must explain why you think you should get your things back, eg you can now provide missing import or export documents.

You must include:

  • the seizure reference number on the notice you got from customs
  • your name and address
  • a list of the things you want back – include details, eg quantities and brands
  • proof of ownership – for a vehicle, this must be proof of purchase, eg a receipt
  • anything else that supports your request to get your things back, eg import documents

Notice 12A gives detailed guidance about making a restoration request and getting compensation.

Where to send it

Send your request to Border Force if it seized your things.

National post seizure unit
Border Force
3rd Floor
West Point
Ebrington Street
Plymouth
PL4 9LT

If HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) seized your things, send your request to the address on the notice or letter you got from customs.

Check the notice or letter you got from customs if you don’t know who seized your things. Contact HMRC if you need a copy of the notice.

Deadline

There’s no deadline for making a restoration request. But your things will usually be destroyed or sold:

  • straight away if they’re perishable, eg food, beer or tobacco
  • 45 days after they’re seized if they’re not perishable, eg spirits and cars

If you send a restoration request, non-perishable things are usually kept until your request is considered.

Getting legal help

You can appoint someone to deal with your request for you, eg a solicitor. Send an agent authority form with your request.

Call us today on 0207 237 3388 or complete our visa assessment form, by clicking here

If you’re unhappy with the response

You can ask for the response to your request to be reviewed if:

  • you don’t get your things back or get compensation
  • you disagree with the fee for getting your things back

The letter telling you the response will also tell you how to ask for a review.

If you disagree with the review

You can appeal to the tax tribunal if you disagree with the outcome of the review.

Ask for your things back

You can ask for your things back (make a ‘restoration request’) even if you agree customs was right to take them.

If you think you should get your things back because you didn’t break the rules (eg you brought in alcohol for your own use) you must ask for a court hearing instead of making a restoration request.

If your request is accepted, you can get your things back but you may have to pay a fee and any duty you owe.

You may be offered compensation if your things have already been destroyed or sold.

Making a request

Follow the example letter or write your own.

You must explain why you think you should get your things back, eg you can now provide missing import or export documents.

You must include:

  • the seizure reference number on the notice you got from customs
  • your name and address
  • a list of the things you want back – include details, eg quantities and brands
  • proof of ownership – for a vehicle, this must be proof of purchase, eg a receipt
  • anything else that supports your request to get your things back, eg import documents

Notice 12A gives detailed guidance about making a restoration request and getting compensation.

Where to send it

Send your request to Border Force if it seized your things.

National post seizure unit
Border Force
3rd Floor
West Point
Ebrington Street
Plymouth
PL4 9LT

If HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) seized your things, send your request to the address on the notice or letter you got from customs.

Check the notice or letter you got from customs if you don’t know who seized your things. Contact HMRC if you need a copy of the notice.

Deadline

There’s no deadline for making a restoration request. But your things will usually be destroyed or sold:

  • straight away if they’re perishable, eg food, beer or tobacco
  • 45 days after they’re seized if they’re not perishable, eg spirits and cars

If you send a restoration request, non-perishable things are usually kept until your request is considered.

Getting legal help

You can appoint someone to deal with your request for you, eg a solicitor. Send an agent authority form with your request.

If you’re unhappy with the response

You can ask for the response to your request to be reviewed if:

  • you don’t get your things back or get compensation
  • you disagree with the fee for getting your things back

The letter telling you the response will also tell you how to ask for a review.

If you disagree with the review

You can appeal to the tax tribunal if you disagree with the outcome of the review.

Options when customs seizes your things

1:Overview 2:Ask for your things back
3:Ask for a court hearing

Customs will destroy or sell anything it seizes from you for breaking the rules on bringing or receiving goods from abroad, unless you:

This applies to:

Collecting things from a seized vehicle

You have 45 days to collect anything you left in your vehicle if it’s been seized. Send a letter marked ‘personal property’ to the address on the notice or letter you got from customs.

If your things or cash are seized as criminal evidence

Customs officers can also seize goods, vehicles and cash you bring into the UK if they suspect a crime. They’ll explain what happens next and what you can do.

Complain about how you were treated

You can complain about how customs officers treated you during a customs seizure. Complain to Border Force or HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), depending on who seized your things.

Check the notice or letter you got from customs if you don’t know who seized your things.

Contact HMRC if you have questions about customs.

Moving personal belongings to the UK

You have tax and customs responsibilities when you move your personal belongings to the UK from abroad.

You must follow the rules on:

You must pay Excise Duty if you ship alcohol or tobacco.

If you break the rules, your things and any vehicle you move them in may be seized. You may also be fined or prosecuted.

Move from another EU country

You don’t usually pay tax or ‘duty’ (customs charges) on personal belongings you move to the UK from the European Union (EU).

Move from outside the EU

You may be able to claim relief on tax and duty if you’re moving from outside the EU – ask your shipping company for more information.

Claim relief

Your shipping company will ask you to fill in form C3 when your things arrive in the UK (or form C88 if you’re moving temporarily).

Customs officers use your form to work out:

  • if you qualify for relief
  • any tax and duty you owe

You’ll also be asked to fill in:

If you don’t qualify for relief

Your shipping company will tell you how much duty or tax you owe. You must pay it before you can collect your things.

You can be charged:

Fill in form C285(PI) to ask for a refund if you think you’ve been charged too much.

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