All Articles: Fees

The Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) is a fee levied on the majority of UK visa applications. The Immigration Health Surcharge is on top of other Home Office immigration fees and designed to land in a different government pocket. Also sometimes known as the NHS surcharge, it essentially adds £1,035 per...

6th February 2024
BY John Vassiliou

With the news that the immigration health surcharge will be going up dramatically, potentially in the next few weeks, it makes sense for people already in the UK or looking to move here soon to look at whether an early application is possible. As a reminder, the increase is from...

8th January 2024
BY Alex Piletska

The House of Lords’ Secondary Legislation Scrutiny Committee has published a report criticising the Home Office on two fronts. This is in relation to Draft Immigration (Age Assessments) Regulations 2023 and linked Draft Justification Decision (Scientific Age Imaging) Regulations 2023, and the Immigration and Nationality (Fees) (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulations...

30th October 2023
BY Sonia Lenegan

The government has published the new application fees previously announced earlier this year. The statement describes the increase as being made “to pay for vital services and allow more funding to be prioritised for public sector pay rises”. The explanatory memorandum provides a bit more detail: “an increase of 15-20%...

18th September 2023
BY Sonia Lenegan

The government has announced massive increases in immigration fees and the immigration health surcharge. Abolition of some fees has also been announced. The normal rate for the immigration health surcharge will increase from £624 to £1,035 per year. This will be paid by workers entering for a period of six...

13th July 2023
BY Colin Yeo

A Syrian refugee who paid £440 to secure settlement appointments despite being heavily in debt has lost a High Court bid to get his money back. The case is R (MS) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2022] EWHC 1413 (Admin). Home Office policy says that applying for...

19th July 2022
BY CJ McKinney

Immigration applications are extremely expensive. Most requests for permission to stay in the UK (other than under the Points Based Immigration System) now cost £1,048. In addition, applicants may need to pay an Immigration Health Surcharge (£624 a year for adults and £470 for children). On average, therefore, migrants will...

12th July 2022
BY nathgbikpi

The Home Office has published guidance on fee waivers for entry clearance applications (in other words, when it is possible to get a visa for free). This is important as the fees are set at a level that is prohibitive for many families. The waiver application form is here. The...

30th June 2022
BY Sonia Lenegan

Families who can’t afford British citizenship for their children can now get it for free. A new “citizenship fee waiver for individuals under 18” policy was published today. It allows under-18s to apply to have the £1,012 fee on applications for registration as a British citizen waived. The policy applies...

26th May 2022
BY CJ McKinney

Sponsoring a foreign worker isn’t cheap. Application fees and visa taxes typically run to thousands of pounds. Since the UK left the European Union, the costs of sponsorship have also applied to employers who want to hire EU workers under the Points Based Immigration System. Some of the fees are...

27th April 2022
BY Nichola Carter

Update: new fees apply from 4 October 2023, the details of those are here. The updated list of fees for immigration and nationality applications that apply from 6 April 2022 shows that most visas and extensions are up £15. Citizenship and sponsor licence rates are unchanged.  Headline application fees had...

7th April 2022
BY Colin Yeo

The Ministry of Defence and Home Office have jointly announced that the government will be waiving settlement fees for foreign citizens who have served in the UK armed forces for at least six years or been discharged due to an illness or injury attributable to their service. The change will...

25th February 2022
BY Sarah Pinder

The Supreme Court has dismissed a challenge to the level at which the government has set the fees for children to register as British citizens. The court held that the government has been authorised by Parliament to set the level of the fees as it chooses. Currently, the fee is...

2nd February 2022
BY Colin Yeo

The immigration inspector has welcomed an increase in free appointments at visa centres in the UK following a report showing that they have been consistently unavailable. David Neal found that Home Office attempts to keep appointments free despite outsourcing them had “not yet been achieved”. The result has been an...

30th November 2021
BY CJ McKinney

It’s been a very long time since most UK live music and theatre “sponsors” have had to issue paperwork for overseas artists to come into the UK. For most, it’s been 16 months and counting. Since then, we’ve had Brexit, dragging EU acts into the same category as US, Australian,...

3rd August 2021
BY Steve Richard

In this edition of “have I got immigration news for you”, we look at the case of Mahabir v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2021] EWHC 1177 (Admin), in which the High Court found that the Home Office had caused a “colossal interference” with the right of a...

11th May 2021
BY Bilaal Shabbir

The updated list of fees for immigration and nationality applications that apply from 6 April 2021 shows that all remain unchanged from last year. This marks the third financial year running that headline application fees have been largely frozen, having last increased significantly in April 2018. There is a catch: the...

6th April 2021
BY Colin Yeo

In another blow for the Home Office on visa application fees, the department has been forced to concede that its policy on fee waivers for entry clearance applications is unlawful.  Fee waiver policies At time of writing, the relevant guidance states that applicants outside the UK can only be granted...

8th March 2021
BY Mary Atkinson

Upholding an earlier High Court decision, the Court of Appeal has confirmed that the Home Office’s £1,012 fee for registering children as British citizens is unlawful. The case is R (Project for the Registration of Children As British Citizens & Anor) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2021]...

19th February 2021
BY John Vassiliou

The list of fees for immigration and nationality applications was updated on 1 December 2020 to reflect the new or rebranded visa routes introduced on that date. The actual amounts are unchanged, though, and indeed application fees have mostly been frozen for the last two years. But there is a catch:...

8th December 2020
BY Colin Yeo

A recent report on the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) people in Wales has urged the Welsh government to lobby the UK government to reduce visa costs, especially for those whose income is too low to sponsor their spouses or children.  What is the link...

30th June 2020
BY Cryton Chikoko

The Upper Tribunal has found that the Home Office’s policy for waiving the immigration application fee for destitute immigrants — the fees can add up to thousands of pounds for a family — is unlawful and needs to be widened. The judgment is R (Dzineku-Liggison & Ors) v Secretary of...

21st May 2020
BY Colin Yeo

The Immigration and Nationality (Fees) (Amendment) (No. 2) Regulations 2020 (SI 2020 No. 294) come into force on 6 April 2020. They introduce a handful of fee tweaks, with the most significant changes being for children whose natural father is a man other than the man married to the woman...

23rd March 2020
BY John Vassiliou

This week we finally got to see more detail about the 2021 Points Based Immigration System. The government’s announcement confirms that every organisation in the UK — from businesses to charities, schools to local shops — will need to become an “approved sponsor” to employ EU citizens who are new...

21st February 2020
BY Nichola Carter

The High Court has ruled that charging a citizenship fee of over £1,000 to children is unlawful. The decision will be widely welcomed by campaigners who have long argued that the fee charged to register a child as British, which is set far above the administrative cost of processing applications,...

19th December 2019
BY CJ McKinney

In July 2018, a Ghanaian lady named Florence* received a call to say that her 12-year-old son was about to be left on the streets of Accra unless she came to take him. The boy had been in the care of Florence’s sister, who had recently died. Florence dropped everything...

22nd November 2019
BY Bethan Lant

The cost of making an immigration or nationality application has risen extremely steeply in recent years. Annual increases of 20% or 25% per year became standard, bringing the current cost of an application for indefinite leave to remain (aka settlement) to £2,389. The actual cost of processing such an application...

3rd September 2019
BY Colin Yeo

Consistently the most popular article on Free Movement, somewhat depressingly, is the list of immigration and nationality fees. The fees charged by the Home Office for processing visa, settlement and nationality applications are high, set far above the actual administrative cost to the department. Fees constitute a significant source of...

4th April 2019
BY CJ McKinney

The updated list of fees for immigration and nationality applications that apply from 29 March 2019 shows that most remain unchanged from this year. The amount the Home Office has been charging to process visa, settlement and citizenship applications has risen steadily above inflation for many years. This year, against expectations,...

12th March 2019
BY colinyeo

Last month, for the first time in my career, I took a client’s appeal to the media instead of the immigration tribunal. Mozaffar Saberi and Rezvan Habibimarand are an elderly Iranian couple (83 and 73) living in Edinburgh. They have four adult British children, 11 British grandchildren and a British great-grandchild....

25th February 2019
BY John Vassiliou

The British Nationality Act 1981, which took effect on 1 January 1983, introduced British citizenship into UK nationality law. In doing so, it removed the principle of jus soli – the principle by which citizenship is acquired by being born on the territory – from the operation of that nationality...

4th September 2018
BY Steve Valdez-Symonds

Home Office profit on the fees charged to children exercising their right to British citizenship comes to nearly £100 million over the past five years, Free Movement analysis has shown. The controversially high fee for the citizenship process known as registration — set this year at £1,012 — is far...

4th July 2018
BY Colin Yeo

When asked why the fees for visa applications are so expensive, the Home Office traditionally responds that the immigration system should be “funded by those who benefit from it”, in order to reduce taxpayer expense. This is a convenient political argument. It has justified enormous increases in application and other...

2nd July 2018
BY Nick Nason

The ill-treatment of Commonwealth soldiers may no longer make headlines, but scandalously high immigration fees are depriving many of those who have served this country of their right to settle in Britain, writes Vinita Templeton of Duncan Lewis. The new Home Secretary, Sajid Javid, recently announced that the £2,389 fee...

18th May 2018
BY Vinita Templeton

Like Commonwealth citizens unable to pay for residence cards, children entitled to register for British citizenship are prevented from taking up their rightful status in the UK by swingeing Home Office fees, write Solange Valdez-Symonds and Steve Valdez-Symonds. The Home Office fee for residence cards has been one part of...

20th April 2018
BY Solange Valdez-Symonds

Stateless people in the UK face enormous hurdles in the road to becoming British citizens. One of those barriers is the extraordinarily high cost of acquiring British citizenship, writes Asylum Aid’s Cynthia Orchard. The UK government has taken some steps to ensure its approach to statelessness complies with international law....

5th October 2017
BY cynthiaorchard

In a surprising but very welcome development, the Government has reversed the 500% increase in fees for immigration appeals which took effect on 10 October 2016. Fees will instead be charged at the old rates and those who have paid the higher fees in the last few weeks will have...

25th November 2016
BY Colin Yeo

What do you get for your money when you pay for an oral over a paper hearing in the immigration tribunal? Since the introduction of much higher appeal fees in October 2016, the price difference is now between £490 for an “on the papers” decision and £80o for a proper oral...

16th November 2016
BY Colin Yeo

As of today, 10 October 2016, it now costs £800 to lodge an appeal against an immigration decision where a proper oral hearing is requested. The change was announced on 15 September 2016 and the necessary legal change, the First-tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) Fees (Amendment) Order 2016, was laid at the same time...

10th October 2016
BY Colin Yeo

Fees for judicial review applications hare risen yet again from today, Monday 25 July 2016. A new fees order was quietly laid last Friday: The Civil Proceedings, First-tier Tribunal, Upper Tribunal and Employment Tribunals Fees (Amendment) Order 2016. The fees going up are for the permission stage and they rise by 10%. Other fees remain as...

25th July 2016
BY Colin Yeo
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