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UK Family Visit Visa Invitation letter - Pregnancy reason
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Post by sugudheenu » Sun Jan 08, 2012 10:02 am
Post by MPH80 » Sun Jan 08, 2012 10:33 am
Re: UK Family Visit Visa Invitation letter - Pregnancy reaso
Post by raomvj » Tue Jan 17, 2012 10:16 pm
Post by umrn » Thu Mar 13, 2014 12:39 pm
Post by CR001 » Thu Mar 13, 2014 2:43 pm
umrn wrote: Hi I m on a student visa. Does anyone knows what type of visa applicable if i want to bring my in-laws here for my wife's pregnancy. I m confused whether it is a family visitor, or general visitor visa ?? Bcos the family visitor section says that the family you are visiting should be permanent settled in the UK. I m a student though, which means i m not permanently settled. Can any one help please ?
Re: UK Family Visit Visa Invitation letter - Pregnancy reason
Post by manilove4u » Tue Sep 05, 2017 12:39 pm
Post by Wanderer » Tue Sep 05, 2017 12:43 pm
manilove4u wrote: ↑ Tue Sep 05, 2017 12:39 pm Dear umrn can you please email me the invitation letter on xxxxxxxxxxxxxx which you sent to invite your parents. my wife is pregnant and i a want to invite my parents just for visit for short time. Thanks
Post by CR001 » Tue Sep 05, 2017 12:54 pm
manilove4u wrote: ↑ Tue Sep 05, 2017 12:39 pm Dear umrn can you please email me the invitation letter on email address removed by moderator which you sent to invite your parents. my wife is pregnant and i a want to invite my parents just for visit for short time. Thanks
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How to Write a Letter of Invitation for a UK Visa
If you wish to act as a sponsor for a visitor to the UK, you may have to write a letter of invitation.
For more information about UK visitor visas and the requirements when applying for one, don’t hesitate to get in touch with our expert immigration lawyers on 0333 305 9375 , or contact us online .
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- What is a Letter of Invitation?
A letter of invitation (also known as a sponsorship letter or sponsor letter) is a letter written by a UK-based sponsor to support a friend, family member, or partner’s UK visitor visa application.
This is usually because you will need to demonstrate that you have ties to the visa applicant in question and that you will be able to support or accommodate the visitor for the entire duration of their stay in the UK.
The main content of the letter will be you inviting the visitor to stay in your home. Details about yourself, the visitor, and the trip itself should also be included in order to give the fullest and most detailed description of the visit as possible.
In addition, you should also include copies of supporting documents to verify and back up the information contained within the invitation letter.
What are the requirements for a letter of invitation, who should the letter of invitation be addressed to, what information should be included in the letter of invitation, what supporting documents should be included with the letter of invitation, sample letter of invitation, how can ias help.
In order for the invitation letter to be taken as valid evidence, you should:
- Be a UK citizen, legal resident, or lawful permanent resident
- Be a friend, relative, or partner/spouse of the visitor
- Have a registered place of accommodation (such as a house or a flat that you rent or own)
- Have enough space to accommodate the visitor for the whole duration of their stay
All of the information included in the letter must be truthful and accurate.
Although the purpose of the letter of invitation is to invite someone to stay in your home, the letter doesn’t need to be addressed directly to the visitor.
This is because the invitation letter is simply a formality intended to convey supporting information such as your personal details, the visitor’s details and details about the visit to the British Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) or UK consular officer.
Therefore, the letter does not need to be written as though you are writing to, speaking to, or inviting the visitor directly.
Instead, it’s perfectly acceptable to write as though you are addressing the ECO, rather than the visitor. If so, then you may wish to start the letter with ‘Dear Sir/Madam’, or ‘To whom it may concern’.
However, you may wish to address the invitation letter to the visitor you are inviting to stay if you wish. This would then be written as ‘Dear <visitor’s name>’.
If you require assistance writing a letter of invitation, get in touch with us today. Get in touch
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Basic information to be included in the letter of invitation.
The letter of invitation should ideally contain details about the host, the visitor, and the trip itself.
It should include the host’s:
- Full address
- Telephone number
- Status in the UK
- Relationship to the visitor
In addition to this, it should also include the visitor’s:
- Travel itinerary
- Relationship to the host
The sponsor letter should also give details about the trip itself. The letter should include details regarding the following:
- The length of the stay
- The start and end dates of the stay
- The purpose of the visit
- The accommodation
- Living, travel and other expenses
Additional Information to be Included in the Letter of Invitation
Details regarding the expenses should be outlined by the host. This may be stating that the host intends to fully financially support the visitor throughout the trip, including living and food costs. Alternatively, the invitation letter may state that the host and visitor intend to share costs throughout the trip, or that the visitor intends on paying a certain amount of the costs of the visit.
It may be that you’re unable to provide exact dates of the trip, as you or the visitor haven’t made any firm arrangements yet.
If so, then it’s acceptable to give a rough idea of the number of days or the date in the invitation letter. For example, this may be expressed as ‘I am inviting <visitor’s name> to stay with me for two weeks in August’, or ‘The visit will last for around eight days in November or December’.
In addition, if you and the visitor are planning to stay somewhere other than (or in addition to) your own home, you should include details about this also. This may be written as ‘We are also planning to stay in <location’s address> for three nights from <start date> to <end date>.
When outlining the purpose of the visit in the invitation letter, it may be something as simple as sightseeing, or wanting to spend time with friends or relatives. However, if the visitor is travelling to the UK for a specific reason, such as to attend a specific event or to take a course, then this should be mentioned in the letter.
In order for the invitation letter to be accepted by the ECO, it should be accompanied by copies of supporting documents to back up the information included in the letter.
For example, these might be documents that prove your status as a UK citizen, or ones that prove that you’re able to financially support the visitor throughout the stay.
Below are some examples of supporting documents you may wish to include with the invitation letter:
- A scan of your UK passport
- A scan of something that confirms your status in the UK, such as biometric residence permit
- Proof of rental or ownership of your home, such as a tenancy agreement
- Proof of financial means, such as bank statements
- Copies of any travel, accommodation or activity plans already arranged
- Any other legal document that will support the visitor’s visa application
There are no specific documents that absolutely must be included with the letter. However, the more documents you include, the stronger the support for the visa application will be.
Below is an example of what a letter of invitation for a visitor visa or family visitor visa may look like. Note that this is only a rough template, and sections may be added, taken away, or edited as needed according to your own personal circumstances.
<Your phone number>
<Your email address>
Application for visitor visa for <visitor’s name>
To whom it may concern,
This is a letter of invitation inviting <visitor’s name, with date of birth> to come and stay with me, <your full name, with date of birth> in the UK. They will stay with me for <length of stay> at my address in <location> from <start date> to <end date>.
<Visitor’s name> is my <type of relationship here, with length of time known if applicable>, and the intention of the trip will be sightseeing, seeing family and travelling to local areas of interest.
In addition to <visitor’s name> staying in my own home, we will also spend three days lodging at <name of accommodation or place> from <start date> to <end date>. The address of the lodging is <address>.
I am a UK citizen by birth and work as a <occupation>. I fully intend to financially support <visitor’s name> for the duration of the trip, including food, room and board, and travel costs within the UK. I also have more than enough room in my own home to accommodate <visitor’s name> for the duration of their trip.
Please find attached copies of my British passport, tenancy agreement, work ID, and booking details of the lodgings in <location>. I have also enclosed a copy of my bank statement from <date> to confirm that I have the necessary funds to fund <visitor’s name>’s visit to the UK.
If you require any more information from me, please don’t hesitate to get in contact.
If you’re required to write an invitation letter to support a UK visitor visa, it’s important to be clear on what you’re expected to include in it, as well as what supporting documents you will need.
However, if you require any assistance with writing an invitation letter for a UK visa, or if you have any questions about the process, IAS are here to help.
We are expert immigration lawyers who have years’ worth of experience in UK immigration law. We can assist you with any UK immigration or visa issue, including advising you on how to write, format and complete a letter of invitation for a UK visitor visa.
For more information about the services we offer, and to speak to one of our trusted legal advisers, get in touch with us today on 0333 305 9375 , or contact us through our form online .
You may be interested in reading about.
British citizenship, spouse visa application, indefinite leave to remain, spouse visa extension, skilled worker visa, sponsor licence application.
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Pregnancy During Visa Application or Stay in the UK
By Amar Ali, Immigration Solicitor
If you are a foreign national who has submitted a UK visa application or is in the UK and becomes pregnant, the immigration options available and the steps you will need to take depend on your individual circumstances. These include the immigration status of your partner and whether you wish to stay in the UK with your child and give birth here.
It is important to note that under the UK’s immigration rules, there is no specific law preventing a person who is pregnant from travelling to the UK. However, depending on your home country, you may be asked to provide additional documentation as part of the visa application process to prove the purpose of your visit and that you have strong ties to your home country.
When it comes to pregnancy during a UK visa application, you do not need to explain that you are pregnant on your application form. As long as the Home Office believes that your application and your reasons for coming to the UK are genuine, there is no reason that being pregnant should hinder your case.
Everyone's circumstances are different, if you want to discuss your case , please speak to one of our friendly and approachable immigration solicitors in complete confidence at 020 3744 2797 or email [email protected] .
Pregnant on a UK visitor visa
If you are currently in the UK as a visitor and have become pregnant while here, the immigration options available to you will depend on the immigration status of your partner. If you have a partner who lives in the UK and they are a British or Irish citizen (i.e. you are pregnant with a British citizen), or they hold indefinite leave to remain or another form of permanent residence, you can consider applying for any of the following visa types under the family migration scheme:
It is important to note, to switch to one of these visas, in most cases, you have to be outside the UK. That said, it may be possible to ask the Home Office to exercise discretion if you are unable to leave the UK, e.g. if you are medically considered unfit to fly on the basis that your pregnancy has passed 6 months or you have certain medical conditions.
It is important to seek the advice of an immigration solicitor in this situation to ensure you have the right information based on your circumstances.
The UK fiancé visa is specifically for people who are planning to get married or enter into a civil partnership within 6 months with a British or Irish citizen, or a person who has the right to remain indefinitely in the UK. Once married or have a civil partner, fiancé visa holders can apply to switch to a spouse visa from within the UK (see details below on the spouse visa). As mentioned above, it is not normally possible to switch to a fiancé visa from a visitor visa within the UK unless. This is the case even if you are pregnant unless you can make a case that leaving the UK is not possible on medical grounds.
The UK spouse visa enables foreign nationals to enter and remain in the UK to live with a partner who is a British or Irish citizen or a person who has indefinite leave to remain. You will be able to switch to a spouse visa from within the UK if you currently hold a fiancé visa and are now married or in a civil partnership with your UK-based partner. Alternatively, if you are in the UK and do not hold a fiancé visa, you will normally need to leave the country to submit your spousal visa application.
To qualify for a spouse visa, you will need to show that you:
- Are married, in a civil partnership, or have lived with your partner for at least 2 years
- And your partner has a combined income of at least £18,600
- Meet the English language requirements
If your application is approved for a spouse visa, you will be able to stay for up to 33 months initially. This can then be further extended by 30 months. After 5 years of continuous residence in the UK, you will be able to apply for indefinite leave to remain.
Pregnant on limited leave to remain visa
If you are currently in the UK on a valid (i.e. non-expired) limited leave to remain visa and you become pregnant (e.g. pregnancy as a Tier 4 student visa holder), you are not required to inform the Home Office and will be able to continue your stay.
If your visa is due to expire, it is important to understand that you will not be permitted to stay on the basis that your child was born in the UK. Under the UK’s immigration and citizenship rules, even if your child is born here, they will not automatically become a British citizen unless their other parent is a British citizen or holds indefinite leave to remain (ILR).
If you choose to leave the UK and later return on another limited leave to remain visa (e.g. student visa or work visa ), you will need to apply for a child dependant visa if you wish to bring your child with you.
Documentation required to stay in the UK while pregnant
As explained above, it may be possible for you to stay beyond the expiry of your visitor visa and switch to another visa while in the UK if you are pregnant. It is important to note that the exact documents you need will to provide to the Home Office depend on your personal circumstances. Documents that may be used to prove that you are genuinely unable to leave the UK in order to apply for a family visa (and hence need to switch inside the UK) may include:
- A letter from your doctor explaining that you are not fit to fly on medical grounds
- A marriage certificate
- A civil partnership certificate
- Proof you have been living together for 2 or more years (e.g. bills, tenancy agreement)
- Proof you intend to get married or enter into a civil partnership within 6 months if applying for a fiancé visa
When to take action
Exactly when you need to apply for a visa to remain in the UK depends on how long you have to remain on your current visa and the remaining term of your pregnancy. Regardless of your personal circumstances, it is essential to take action before your current visa expires. If your child is born in the UK during the term of your visitor visa, it is advisable to take action as soon as is reasonably possible after the birth to ensure you have a proper plan of action in place to ensure your immigration status.
If you want to discuss the best actions to take and the exact timings, speak to one of our experienced immigration solicitors in complete confidence at 020 3744 2797 or email [email protected] .
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Getting a visitor visa for family and friends
This advice applies to England. See advice for See advice for Northern Ireland , See advice for Scotland , See advice for Wales
Your friend or family member can apply for a visitor visa so they can visit you in the UK. Visitor visas are usually for up to 6 months.
Bringing your partner to the UK to get married or register a civil partnership
Your partner can’t use a standard visitor visa to come to the UK to get married or register a civil partnership.
If you and your partner want to live in the UK after you get married or register a civil partnership, check if they can apply for a partner visa .
If you and your partner don’t want to stay in the UK together, your partner can come to the UK on a marriage visitor visa. This means they’ll have to leave the UK within 6 months. Check how to get a marriage visitor visa on GOV.UK .
Check if your visitor needs a visa
You’ll need to check if they need a visitor visa on GOV.UK if you don’t already know - it depends on their nationality.
If they don’t need a visitor visa, they might be able to scan their own passport at an ‘eGate’ instead of speaking to an immigration officer. Check who can use the eGates on GOV.UK .
If they can't use an eGate, they should still be prepared to explain why they’re visiting when they get to the border. If the Border Force thinks they might try to stay longer, they can refuse them entry
If you’re helping your visitor apply for a visitor visa
They’ll have to apply online .
Make sure your visitor puts their information in where it asks for the applicant’s details .
After you fill in the form, the visitor will need to have their fingerprints and photograph taken at a visa application centre. Check where their nearest visa application centre is before you apply, because it might be in a different country.
The online form asks you some questions to get to the visa you need.
If you need more support with your application
You should consider getting specialist advice if you’re unsure about the application. It might cost you money but it can save you time and hassle. Your local Citizens Advice can either help you or let you know where to get expert advice.
Documents you’ll need to include
You’ll need to include documents that support their application when you send it off. The online form will give you guidance on what to include, but here are some things to keep in mind.
If your documents aren’t in English or Welsh, you’ll need to provide certified English translations of your documents with the originals. Each translation has to include:
confirmation from the translator that it’s an accurate translation of the original
the date of the translation
the translator's full name and signature
the translator's contact details
Prove they’ll be returning to their country after their visit
You could show proof your visitor has a job or studies to go back to in their home country. You can also show they have family who depend on them in their home country.
Prove there’s enough money for the trip
You’ll have to provide evidence to show that the visitor’s trip can be afforded, whether it’s being paid for by them or by you.
If the visitor is paying for themselves, they’ll have to include documents proving that they can afford it, for example bank statements or payslips.
If you’re paying for their visit (eg for their flights and accommodation), you’ll need to prove that you can afford the visitor’s trip as well as your own costs - for example your rent, mortgage and general expenses.
an estimate of how much the trip will cost - this needs to be as accurate as possible
proof of your income and where you work, for example payslips or an employment contract
proof that you have enough money to pay for the visitor’s stay, for example recent bank statements
proof that you’re in the UK legally, for example a copy of your passport or visa
Prove you have a genuine relationship
You’ll have to show how you’re connected to the person visiting you.
If the person visiting you is a friend, boyfriend or girlfriend, you might need to give stronger proof they’ll be returning to their country after their visit.
If your visa is refused
You can read the government’s guidance on reasons for refusing visas on GOV.UK, if you're concerned the visa you're applying for might be refused.
You can’t usually appeal if the visitor visa is refused. It's quicker and easier to apply again. Make sure you deal with the reasons your first application was refused.
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Page last reviewed on 13 May 2019
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Letter of Invitation for friends and family to visit the UK – Guidelines and Samples
Tell Us What You Think?
To apply for the UK visit visa it is required that the applicant submits an invitation letter. A letter of invitation for the UK visit visa is a letter written by a citizen or legal resident of the United Kingdom, addressed to a foreigner with whom they have family ties or friendship, inviting them to stay over at their house. It is also a confirmation that they have enough room for the visitor, for the entire period of their stay in the UK.
This letter, also known as a sponsorship letter for UK Visa, can also be written in another format. The letter can be written addressed to the UK consular officer, confirming that they are willing to admit an international with whom they have family ties or friendship, and also that they have enough room for the visitor for the entire period of their stay in the UK. Either version is acceptable.
In order for the letter to be valid and taken into account by the UK consular officer, the host who writes the letter must fulfil the following requirements:
- must be a UK citizen or lawful permanent resident
- must be a visitor’s friend, boyfriend/girlfriend or relative
- must have a registered place (home, flat)
- must have enough room for the visitor during their whole period of stay in the UK
How to Write a Letter of Invitation for a UK Visa?
Though writing an invitation letter might sound challenging especially for the host, it is actually a very simple thing to do. If you are the host, you will just have to write down why you are willing to admit this person in your house and how long they are going to stay. However, if you still feel clueless here you have a guideline on how to write a letter of invitation for a UK Visa. Download a sample invitation letter here .
Decide to whom you are going to address the letter, to your guest or the consular officer. It might seem a tricky decision to make, but it does not matter that much. The important thing is what you say and not to whom. In both cases, the consular officer is going to read it.
If you do not know where to start writing a letter of invitation for a UK visa, write the following information in a list:
- Your full name
- Your date of birth
- Your full address and telephone number in the United Kingdom
- Your occupation
- Your status in the United Kingdom
- Visitor’s full name
- Visitor’s date of birth
- Visitor’s address and telephone number
- Visitor’s relationship to the host
- Visitor’s purpose of the trip
- How long the guest intends to stay in the UK (specific dates)
- Details on accommodation and living expenses
- Your signature
Every sponsorship letter for UK visa must contain the above-listed information. After writing all this information in a paper, then you can start arranging it in the form of a letter and shaping it.
In order for what is written in the letter to be taken into account by the consular officer, it is better for the host to send some additional documents alongside the Letter of Invitation. These extra requirements are not a must, but they are still a huge plus in visitor’s favour. These documents are as follows:
- A scanned copy of the host’s ID/passport
- Evidence of their status in the UK
- Evidence of means of subsistence (if the host will financially support the guest)
- Proof of home / flat ownership or rental contract
- You may also add any other document that you believe would help your visitor in getting their visa.
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How to write a Letter of Invitation for a UK visitor visa Application
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Table of Contents [Hide]
Visitor Visa - General Requirements
What is a letter of invitation?
Who should write the letter, what should be included in your visa invitation letter, tips for writing a successful uk visitor visa invitation letter.
Unless you are a non-visa national i.e. you are NOT visa-exempt, and need to visit the UK, you will need to apply for a ' Visitor Visa ' to enter the UK.
There are several types of visitor visas, each one permitting different/specific activities:
- A Standard Visitor Visa permits you to come to the UK for activities including tourism, visiting family and friends, conducting specific business activities (such as attending a meeting or conference), receiving medical treatment or for short term study. - This visa is also commonly known as a “Visit visa” or “Tourist visa.”
- A Permitted Paid Engagement Visitor Visa allows certain professionals to come to the UK for a paid engagement by a UK-based organisation or client.
- A Marriage Visitor Visa gives you permission to get married/register a civil partnership, or give notice of a marriage or a civil partnership in the UK
- Visa to pass through the UK in transit is required to pass through the UK in transit (on route to another country).
General Requirements of the Visitor Visa
As well as having a valid passport/travel document for the duration of your trip, the Home Office will also require you to sufficiently demonstrate that you are coming to the UK as a 'genuine visitor', which means that you will need to clearly evidence:
- That you will leave the UK when you finish your visit
- You have sufficient funds for your travel from and return back to your home country
- You will be able to financially support yourself and your dependants during your stay
- You are not attempting to establish permanent residence in the UK or make it your primary residence by frequent or consecutive visits.
How do you prove that you meet the requirements?
You will demonstrate the above to the Entry Clearance Officer assessing your application, by submitting relevant documents to support your case.
One of the documents you may need to include is a 'letter of invitation', depending on the reason(s) for your visit to the UK.
A letter of invitation (also referred to as an invitation letter or sponsorship letter) is usually required when:
- You will be visiting and/or staying in the UK with family, friends or partners.
- You need to carry out activities relating to your employment/profession or study outside the UK (e.g. attending business meetings or performing as a musician, participating in an academic exchange).
- Participating in a (permitted) paid engagement for UK-based organisation or client.
Why do you need a letter of invitation?
As previously stated, the Home Office wants to see that you will be coming to the UK as a genuine visitor. The letter of invitation serves as (further/additional) evidence of the purpose for your visit, what you will be doing during your stay and any other critical information that is relevant e.g. your family member or friend will be providing you accommodation and/or financial support for your trip.
Ultimately you want to make it clear to the Entry Clearance Officer that you will not be breaching the rules of your visit visa when you come to the UK.
If you are staying with family/friends
The letter will need to be written by the person that will be providing your accommodation and/or they will be financially supporting you, and addressed for the attention of the Entry Clearance Officer.
The person needs to be a British citizen or legal resident in the UK (known as the resident sponsor). Although the person writing the letter of invitation is not required to be a relative of the visa applicant, the relationship needs to be genuine, and needs to be sufficiently proven accordingly.
If you will be carrying out Permitted Paid Engagements
The letter needs to be written by the relevant UK-based organisation or client that you will be doing work for/with.
If you need to attend a business meeting, training, conference etc
The letter needs to be written by the organisation(s) sending you and/or inviting you to attend.
If you will be performing at an Event or Exhibition
A letter of invitation will need to be provided by the respective event organiser.
The purpose of the visit
The letter should explain the primary reason for the visit, such as to visit family or friends, for a holiday, to attend/perform at an event, for business purposes etc.
The length of your stay
The letter should specify the planned length of your stay, including the planned dates of arrival and departure.
A general background of the Applicant
You should mention the relevant ties to your home country, such as if you are in full-time employment, run a business or have assets there.
An overview of the your travel plans in the UK
The letter should provide an overview of your travel plans in the UK, including any planned activities or events.
A detailed itinerary is only really required if you will be carrying out professional engagements.
The relationship between the person writing the invitation letter and the visa applicant
The letter should explain the nature of the relationship between the person writing the letter and the visa applicant, such as being friends, relatives, employer, client etc.
A statement of financial support
If the person writing the invitation letter is offering to cover the costs of the trip, they should include a statement of financial support in the letter. This should include details of the level support they are providing and how the costs will be covered.
The location of where you will be staying
You will need to provide the full address where you will be staying, and (if applicable) the name and contact information of the person providing the accommodation.
All of the information included in the letter must be truthful and accurate
As well as being honest and transparent about your intentions for coming to visit the UK, It is important to ensure that the information you include matches with the application form.
Use a formal tone and professional format:
The invitation letter should be written in a formal tone, using proper grammar and spelling. it should also be formatted with a clear structure and layout. where appropriate, try to incorporate bullet points or numbered lists to help break up the text and make the letter easy to read and cross-reference for the home office caseworker., include all relevant information in a clear and concise manner:.
The letter should include all the necessary information about the planned visit, such as the purpose of the visit, the length of the stay, and the location of the stay. This information should be presented in a clear and concise manner.
What other Supporting Documents need to be submitted for the Visitor Visa Application?
Unfortunately there is no one-size fits all set of documents that can be applied to support your visitor visa application, as the items you must submit will always be subject to your personal circumstances. However, the core items you will be expected to include are:
- A copy of your valid Passport/Travel document
- Proof of Finances, such as Bank statements
- Evidence of suitable accommodation you have arranged in the UK
- Confirmation of any travel bookings, or relevant activity plans already scheduled
If you are required to provide one, an invitation letter will play an essential part in your UK visitor visa application. A well-written letter can help to demonstrate that you are coming as a genuine visitor to the UK.
To make an invitation letter most effective, it needs to be well structured and include all the relevant information in a clear and concise manner so it is easy to read, and correlates with the information on the application form and other supporting documents.
Ultimately, it is just one of many supporting documents you will need to submit for a successful application to get the visa granted.
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Should I Apply for a Fiancé(e) Visa or a Marriage Visitor Visa?
Reasons why UK Visitor Visa Applications get Refused
How to Apply for a Visitor Visa to visit the UK
Melanie Wong is a Senior Immigration Solicitor based in London, UK.
With over 20 years of legal experience , she has extensive knowledge and exposure of all areas of UK immigration law, with particular expertise in handling difficult and technically complex cases , including UK Settlement, Human Rights and British nationality law.
Melanie currently provides all her Legal Services as a Consultant Solicitor with Lexmark Legal Ltd , an SRA Regulated law firm, SRA Number: 647527 .
While every effort has been made to ensure that the information and law contained in this article is accurate and current as of the date of publication, we accept no responsibility for its accuracy or for any loss or damages arising from accessing, or the reliance, of this guidance.
Please also note that the information does not represent a complete statement of the Law and does not constitute legal advice .
If you would like specific professional advice about your UK immigration matter, please consider booking a consultation or one of my other legal services.
Making a UK Visa or Settlement application can be a stressful experience, and whilst there is a lot of ‘free’ information online, finding clear expert guidance that is up to date, and in line with your specific requirements can be a daunting task.
If you have any concerns about your case, it is recommended to reach out for advice from a trusted legal professional.
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- Visas for Friends and Family
Inviting Friends or Family to the UK (short visit)
Invite friends and family to visit the uk.
If your spouse or partner, family or friends, are coming to visit you in the UK, it is likely that they will need to apply for a visa.
From 1st January 2021, EU/EEA nationals (except Irish Nationals) will also be subject to immigration control and require visitor permission to enter the UK.
*Certain nationalities are not required to formally apply for a visitor visa before travel and can get stamped in at the border. If the nationality is not listed in appendix 2 of the visa national list found here , then they are a non-visa national and can likely get stamped as a visitor at the border. If unsure, please check with us before travelling.
We recommend that those following this route still carry the same documentation ready to show at the border as evidence of your intention to visit.
If your guests are visa nationals and require a visa- whether they are family or friends - they may apply for the Standard Visitor Visa if they intend to visit you for less than 6 months.
Please be aware that under this visa category your guests are not permitted to undertake any work, and it would not be possible for them to switch into another visa category within the UK.
You can find full information about the Standard Visitor visa on the Home Office website .
If your guests are planning to visit the UK in order to accompany you for your graduation, we have specific advice about inviting guests to attend your graduation .
Your friends and family can apply for their visas online on the UKVI application website .
For those countries where it is not possible to apply online, the paper application forms are available to download from the Home Office website .
Your friends and family will need to prepare some or all of the following documents before their application. Please make sure to read the guidance the Home Office website too.
- The visa fee in local currency
- Evidence that they have enough money to support themselves whilst in the UK, for example, bank statements, payslips, or a letter from their employer.
- If you intend to support them financially during their visit they will also need to provide (i) your bank statements with their application, and (ii) a letter from you confirming that you are able to maintain and accommodate them during their stay.
- If they will be staying with you, you may also need to provide proof of your accommodation and that they have permission to stay with you.
- A short invitation letter from you, confirming your relationship with them and the reason you are inviting them to come to the UK.
- A letter from the University which confirms you are enrolled at Aston. You can request this letter via MAP for collection from The Hub Advice Zone.
- A photocopy of (i) your passport (the photograph page), (ii) your current student visa or biometric residence permit and (iii) your police registration certificate if you have one. Do not send originals.
- Evidence that your family have every reason to leave the UK at the end of their visit. For example, a letter from their employer to show they will be returning to their home country.
- An itinerary (plan) for their visit. You can write this down and give it to your visitors. For example, Day 1: Collect from Birmingham airport. Day 2: Tour of Birmingham shops. Day 3: Visit Worcester by train. Day 4: Coach trip to Warwick Castle etc. You can include hotel or tour bookings if you have any.
The following nationalities when arriving in the UK are permitted to use the “E-Gates” for quicker entry into the UK.
All EU/EEA nationals (from 1st January 2021)
- New Zealand
- South Korea
This means that if you are a national of any of the above countries you can choose to use the E-Gates at a UK airport instead of waiting in line to see a Border Officer. This is regardless of whether you have applied for your visa before travel or were planning to get stamped in at the border. It is not mandatory to use an E-Gate and you can still see a Border Officer if you want. More information here .
All other nationalities still must see a Border Officer and present their visitor visa/passport in person when entering the UK.
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- Visas and immigration
- What you need to do
How to apply for a visa to come to the UK
Choose a visa.
You may need a visa to come to the UK to study, work, visit or join family.
There are different visas depending on:
- where you come from
- why you want to come to the UK
- how long you want to stay for
- your personal circumstances and skills
Before you apply, you must check if you need a visa and what type you need. Depending on your nationality, you might not need a visa to visit or transit through the UK.
Your application must be approved before you travel.
You do not need to apply for a visa if you’re an Irish citizen.
If you want to visit the UK
Apply for a Standard Visitor visa to visit the UK for up to 6 months. For example:
- for a holiday or to see family and friends
- for a business trip or meeting
- to do a short course of study
You must apply for a Marriage Visitor visa if you want to visit the UK to get married or register a civil partnership.
If you have a visitor visa you cannot take a job in the UK.
If you’re travelling through the UK
You might need a visa if you’re travelling through the UK on your way to another country, for example if you have a layover between flights.
Apply for a visa to travel through the UK .
If you want to study in the UK
Your course length, type and place of study affect which visa to apply for.
A Standard Visitor visa lets you do a short course of study that lasts no longer than 6 months.
A Short-term study visa lets you come to the UK to study an English language course that is over 6 months and up to 11 months.
A Student visa is usually for a longer course. You must be sponsored by a licensed college or university and have a confirmed place. You may be able to do some work on this visa.
A Child Student visa is for 4 to 17 year olds who want to study at an independent school. If you’re 16 or over, you can do some work on this visa.
If you want to work in the UK
You can work in the UK on a short or long-term basis with a work visa. There are many types of work visa .
The visa you need depends upon:
- your skills and qualifications
- if you have a job offer and sponsorship
- if you want to bring your family with you
- what you’ll be doing - for example sporting, charitable or religious work
You can set up a business with an Innovator Founder visa .
If you want to join family in the UK
If you’re a spouse, partner or family member of someone who has British citizenship or settlement in the UK, you can apply for a family visa to join them. They may need to show that they can support you financially.
You may be able to apply for indefinite leave to remain ( ILR ) after a set amount of time living in the UK.
If your family member is in the UK on a visa
You may be able to apply for a visa to join a family member who’s in the UK on a visa. They must be either:
- your spouse or partner
- your parent if you’re 18 or under
Check what visa you’ll need to join them.
Family reunion visas for refugees
If you were separated from your partner or child when you were forced to leave your country, they can apply to join you in the UK.
Your family members can apply if you have been given asylum or 5 years’ humanitarian protection, and not have British citizenship.
If your family member is from the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein
You can apply for a free EU Settlement Scheme family permit to come to the UK if you have a close family member who:
- was living in the UK by 31 December 2020
- has pre-settled or settled status
- you had a relationship with by 31 December 2020 (unless you’re applying for a child who was born or adopted after this date)
Close family members include your spouse or civil partner, child, grandchild, parent or grandparent.
A family permit lets you live, work and study in the UK for up to 6 months. You can apply to the EU Settlement Scheme to stay in the UK after your family permit expires. You usually need to apply within 3 months of arriving in the UK.
Other ways to get permission to live in the UK
If you’re from the eu, switzerland, norway, iceland or liechtenstein.
If you started living in the UK by 31 December 2020, you may be able to apply to the free EU Settlement Scheme instead of applying for a visa. The deadline to apply was 30 June 2021, but you can still apply if you can show reasonable grounds for the delay in applying.
Check if you can still apply to the EU Settlement Scheme .
You can only apply from outside the UK if you have a valid passport or national identity card with a biometric chip.
You can apply for an Ancestry visa to work in the UK if you have a British grandparent and meet other eligibility criteria.
You may have right of abode to live in the UK.
If you’re a Commonwealth citizen and cannot prove your right to be in the UK, read about the Windrush scheme .
If you had indefinite leave to remain ( ILR ) and left the UK for more than 2 years you’ll need to apply for a Returning Resident visa to come back.
There may be another visa that’s right for you based on your circumstances. Check if you need a visa and what other visas you’re eligible for.
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Inviting family to the UK
You can invite your family member(s) to the UK if they want to visit you for a short period of time, or be here to attend your graduation.
The family member(s) you wish to invite to the UK must apply for the Standard Visitor Visa . These are usually issued for 6 months, however, your family should only stay in the UK for the duration of time that they outlined in their application. Holders of this type of visa cannot work or study in the UK.
Applications should be submitted via the U K Government website and the application fee is £93.
Your family member will be required to provide a number of original documents to support their application, details of these can be found on the UKVI website .
The following documents can also be forwarded by you to your family member(s) for them to use in support of their application.
Letter inviting your family member to come to the UK
You write this letter including the information below:
- address the letter ‘To Whom it May Concern'
- details of your course of study
- the name of the person you are inviting to the UK, and their relationship to you, for example, mother, brother, wife, husband, father etc
- your family members passport numbers
- your family member's start and end dates of travel
- the address they will be staying at while in the UK
- What you plan to do whilst they are here
Student Confirmation Letter
You can download this yourself from the Student Portal under the student record tile and it will be sent to you by email. You can also print off your online graduation registration confirmation plus a list of the graduation ceremonies and dates from our website .
Photocopy of your passport and visa
A copy of your passport identity page and a copy of your current UK visa.
Must be original bank statements and not copies but online statements can also be used as long as they provide relevant details of the account holder.
You are only required to provide these if you are paying for the trip. Your bank statement should show that you have sufficient funds to support your family member(s). There is no set amount you must have available so you must calculate how much they will need when they are in the UK.
1. If you have booked accommodation for your family you should provide confirmation of this, for example hotel or guest house reservations.
2. A letter from your landlord or accommodation agency confirming permission for your family member(s) to stay with you.
3. If you would like your family member(s) to stay with you in your Halls of Residence, you will need to check with your Warden. Please note that your family member(s) is only allowed to stay in your room for a maximum of 3 days. After this they will need to find alternative accommodation.
Student information desk
Our administration staff are available to answer your enquires through the Student information desk . You can also view frequently asked questions (FAQs) for many topics related to the student lifecycle.
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UK Visa Guidance: Visitor Visa for Parents and Family
As an international medical graduate (IMG) working in the UK, one of the toughest things that we have to deal with is homesickness, distance, and our separation from friends and family back home. There are only two ways you can alleviate that- 1) Racking up your annual leaves to visit home. 2) Apply for the UK visitor visa for your family and parents. Let’s talk about the second option in detail.
Table of Contents
What type of UK visa can parents apply for?
It is commonly misunderstood that parents of an independent child (i.e. you) can apply for ‘UK Family Visa’ . No, they can not. UK family visa as a parent can only be applied for if the child is <18 years of age and has either British citizenship or has ILR or some other specific circumstance.
For parents of an independent child who doesn’t hold a permanent visa in the UK (most of us), the only way they can come to the UK is via the ‘Standard Visitor Visa’ . It is the same visa you may have applied for if you took the PLAB 2 exam .
Previously there was a separate family visitor visa which is now all absorbed in the standard visitor visa .
How to apply for a UK visitor visa for parents
The process of UK visa application is all very streamlined via the GovUK website. This is the link where you have to click ‘apply now ‘ to start a standard visitor visa application . The whole process has the following steps:
Online application fill-up
Once you click apply now in the above link it will ask you a series of questions and finally, you will be able to submit that.
Registering with your local visa application centre (VAC)
GovUK will determine which service deals with UK visa applications in your country and will forward you their service/website once you have submitted the online application.
Submitting supporting documents and biometrics
VAC in your country will give you the option to either upload or submit the evidence and supporting documents as well as let you book an appointment to provide biometrics (fingerprints and photo).
UK visitor visa requirements for parents
Online application form fill-up.
The following information is needed to successfully complete the online application form. Remember these questions have to be answered from your parents’ point of view , not yours, even if you are filling the application form.
- Parent’s name (according to passport) and address (an address that you can provide evidence for)
- How long have you lived at this address? – In my mother’s case, it was in the years since she got married
- Passport details
- Nationality, country and date of birth
- What is your employment status? – If you say one of your parents is employed , remember you will have to show no objection certificate for travel from their employer as well as sufficient bank statement and employment certificate to prove employment.
- Do you have another income or any savings? – It is very likely your parents will have some sort of savings.
- How much money are you personally planning to spend on your visit to the UK? – For a 6 months visit it’s safe to assume that the total cost will be £4000 – £5000. Even if you are sponsoring the whole amount as they have some savings, they personally can plan to spend one-fourth or one-fifth .
- What is the total amount of money you spend each month? – For my mother, it is around 15000 BDT taking into account different bills, food, and medications.
- Will anyone be paying towards the cost of your visit? – Yes. Someone I know (for example, family or friend) – then you add your name and address and the put the rest amount three-fourth or four-fifth of the total amount.
- Your planned travel information – This is very important . The visa will very likely start from the date as you put as planning to arrive in the UK. So make it as close to the real travel date as possible.
- What is the main reason for your visit to the UK? – Tourism and then Visiting Family.
- Give details about your first parent – So you have to know the details of your grandparents. Names and dates of birth.
- Do you have any family in the UK? – Yes. Give your details here again. And if you have a Tier 2 visa like me – you have a temporary visa.
- Will you be travelling to the UK as part of an organised group? – In my mother’s case, it was no as she will travel independently.
- Staying with family – Tick box your name and provide your contact details. The date you will arrive at this address can easily correspond to the date of arrival in the UK.
- International travel history
- Breach of immigration law, war crimes, terrorist and extremist views, employment history, a question about good character etc will all hopefully be no.
That’s it. These are all the information you need to have prior to starting this online application.
What’s the duration I should apply for?
If it is the first application, I would go for a 6-month visa. Later on, you can apply for a longer duration (2, 5, or 10 years) to minimize the hassle of the visa application. Remember- your parents cannot make the UK their main home by frequent and successive visits. If they are caught, they may get banned from visiting the UK entirely.
UKVI has no strict rule that states you can only stay ‘6 months in a year’, but for any visit the maximum your parents can stay is six months at a stretch . So the safe frequency will be a few months in a year and clearly spending more time outside the UK than inside.
Required documents for visitor visa application
The list of documents that I attached for my mother’s visit visa to the UK :
- Cover letter
- Her bank statement showing her savings
- Her nationality certificate proving her address
- An invitation letter from me
- My passport copy
- My last 6 months bank statement (which serves as a proof of my address)
- If you are renting , then also add a copy of your tenancy agreement.
- An employment letter from my trust.
Cover letter for UK visitor visa for parents
It does not have to be elaborate. Keep it simple, keep it short. If your parents have any income or major transaction, make sure you explain it here in brief.
You can download a template of cover letter for parent’s UK Visa here.
Invitation letter from you
This also does not have to be lengthy. You should explain the nature of their visit, which is a short family visit and mention your visa status and accommodation arrangement currently.
Find a redacted copy of my invitation letter here .
Employment letter from your trust
If you drop a line to your HR representative that you will require an employment letter because you are sponsoring a visit visa for your parents, they will happy to do so.
Make sure you ask them to mention the following:
- The date of your job commencement
- The contract duration
- Your job title
- Your salary
The letter has to be addressed to whom it may concern and printed in a headed paper containing trust’s official seal and HR rep’s contact information.
Visa fees for parents’ visitor visa
A standard visitor visa costs £95.
The fee for a long-term Standard Visitor visa depends on its length:
- 2 years – £361
- 5 years – £655
- 10 years – £822
There are also other costs associated with the services that you can buy from your local visa application centre.
How long does it take to get a UK visitor visa for parents?
The time frame may vary from country to country, but generally, a standard visitor visa application only takes 2 weeks to give you a verdict. You should not apply more than three months before the intended travel date.
You may get a verdict on the application early if your VAC has the option of a premium visa application.
Can I bring my parents permanently in the UK?
As long as you have a temporary visa (tier 2) , you can’t think of that. Why? You are not even permanent.
After working for 5 years you can apply for a settled visa (indefinite leave to remain) and 1-2 years after that, you can apply for UK citizenship. So, after 5-6 years of service in the UK, you can think about bringing your parents permanently.
But this elderly dependent visa application has a high threshold and evidential bar to be reached. The list below is not exhaustive, but you have to prove the following:
- Any parent or grandparent who is wholly dependent financially and emotionally on the permanent UK resident
- There is constant contact with the parent and grandparent
- The applicant has no close relatives in their home country that can be relied upon for support (very difficult to prove as close relatives may be sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, grandchildren, uncles, aunts and possibly nephews, nieces or in-laws)
- The UK relative has appropriate accommodation for the applicant as well as any dependents the applicant may bring to the UK
Evidence under this category needs to be provided by the applicant to prove that their circumstances are true and, most importantly, there is either financial dependency on the sponsor or most exceptional circumstances exist.
More often than not this type of applications are done via immigration agencies in the UK to the court. So the bottom line is, there is a way to bring you elderly parents to bring permanently in the UK, but it may not be applicable or achievable by many.
Frequently Asked Questions
Zhow quickly i can apply for this visit visa for my parents and family.
I would wait to have a minimum of 6 months’ salary into your UK account before sponsoring your parents to visit the UK.
How long parents can stay on a visitor visa in the UK?
As mentioned already, for any visit, the maximum a visitor can stay is for 6 months. But utmost care should be taken so that the UK does not appear to be their home by frequent and successive visits.
What is the maximum stay a UK visitor visa allows?
How much bank statement is required for uk visit visa.
The key here is to prove you have regular income in your bank account which is quite easy as you are getting paid from the NHS every month. There no hard and fast amount that has to be in your account to sponsor.
A maximum of 6 months at a stretch.
Can I extend the visitor visa for my parents while they are in the UK?
The only case that applies to your parents would be if they paid for any private medical treatment and they have to stay for that. Read more here.
Is a return ticket required for my parents to come to the UK with a visitor visa?
Yes. For any visit, having a return ticket solidifies your intention to visit only, not for breaching immigration law.
Can I sponsor a visit visa for my other family members (siblings, cousins etc)?
Yes. It will be the exact same process.
Can my parents avail of NHS services while on a visitor visa?
As they are not residents, the NHS will not be free for them, so it’s a good idea to bring overseas travel health insurance with them when they come to visit.
A Doctor’s Pay in the UK: NHS Salary Structure
How to open a UK bank account
Your First Home Abroad in the UK as an IMG
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We’re a married couple from the Philippines who have gone through the process of immigrating and settling in the United Kingdom. Here you will find what our 6-year journey looked like; we hope that what we’re sharing here can guide you in yours.
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Inviting friends and family to come visit you in the uk.
In this chapter I’ll detail:
Standard Visitor visa
Valid reasons for visiting the uk, proper and appropriate accommodations, access to sufficient funds to support themselves, strong ties to their home country, genuine relationship with you.
Your friends and family might wish to visit you in the UK so that you can spend time together as well as see and experience the various attractions around the country. If they are not exempt (this depends on their nationality), then they will need to apply for a Standard Visitor visa.
The full requirements are available on the official UK Government page for Standard Visitor visas which also details what the visitors can and cannot do in the UK. The documents they will need to provide is extensive, as they will have to prove that (among other things) they have:
- Access to sufficient funds (either self-funded or by a third-party, such as you) to support themselves
- Strong ties to their home country where they will return to after their UK visit (i.e. they will not illegally over-stay in the UK)
- A genuine relationship with you
As a supporting document you should provide them a letter of invitation that they will include as part of their application. This is important especially if you’re helping them apply, as it establishes your relationship with them and makes clear what kind of support you will be providing them during their visit. A letter of invitation will strengthen their application, giving it a better case for approval.
I’m sharing the template I use; download the letter of invitation in support of a visitor visa application here . The template has placeholders for all the information noted above, and guidance on how to fill-out and print the document. Edit it accordingly, and send it (along with other required evidence from you) to the visitor so they can include it when they submit their application.
Visitors generally can perform tourist activities as well as business-related (not work – this is different) activities as outlined in the UK Government’s Visitor Rules . What they cannot do are:
- Do paid work
- Do unpaid work
- Live in the UK for long periods of time through frequent visits
- Get public funds
- Marry or enter into a civil partnership, or provide notice of marriage or civil partnership
A detailed guidance for visitors can be found at the official Visit Guidance by the UK Government.
You must ensure that the invitation letter clearly indicates the reasons the visitor is coming to UK, and that those reasons are valid.
If you are accommodating the visitors in your home then you’ll need to prove that:
- You legally live where you claim to live: this can be your lease agreement or your council tax bill
- Your residence is physically sufficient to house you and your guests: this can be your lease agreement showing the number of bedrooms your residence has, or a letter from your agent or landlord
If your visitors will be staying in paid accommodations then they will need to show that they can afford this on top of the other expenditures for their trip as well as their other expenditures in their home country while they are away.
Your visitors will need to show they have enough liquid funds to support themselves during their visit, and that they have had access to these funds for some time.
As the cost of living varies wildly in the UK depending on location, it is not prescribed how much these funds should be. The visitor should demonstrate that they understand what the costs are for where they are going and what they are planning to do, and that they have funds in excess of this, on top of the money set aside for regular expenditures (such as mortgage) in their home country. Additionally, they should be able to show that this money has been available in their account for some time; this duration is not prescribed but six months is a safe figure to use.
If you are paying for their visit then you’ll need to show that you can afford this on top of your own day-to-day costs of living in the UK.
The UK wants certainty that visitors will go back to their home country after their visit, and not stay in the UK illegally. Visitors thus will need to provide evidence that they have strong ties to their home country. This can be shown in a number of ways:
- The visitor has a stable job in their home country
- The visitor owns properties or businesses in their home country
- The visitor has other relatives that depend on them, living in their home country
All of these will have to be evidenced and included as part of their application. You should reiterate in your support letter that the visitor will return to their home country after they visit you in the UK.
You need to show how you are connected to the visitor. If you are friends or colleagues, you need to provide more detail (as opposed to if you were family); for instance, how you first met, or how long you have known each other.
If there are any problems with this page, be it in terms of factual inaccuracies, mistakes in spelling or grammar, technical website issues — anything at all — I would truly appreciate it if you let me know here so that I can get it corrected.