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5 issues you might face when applying for an Ancestry Visa (and how to avoid them)

Looking for Ancestry Visa guidance? This list has been put together to explore the main concerns raised by those who want to start making a UK Ancestry Visa application. It will also give guidance on how to deal with them.

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    UK Ancestry Visa Application

    UK Ancestry Visas allow anyone with ties to the UK through their grandparents to enter and reside in the UK for up to five years. After this time, they can transition to Indefinite Leave to Remain and then British citizenship. Many individuals, in places like India, Canada, South Africa, New Zealand and Australia have ancestral ties to the UK. However, they often feel concerned about their applications and choose not to undertake them.

    Many of the issues people worry about are easily resolvable.


    1. No documents

    One of the most common issues people come up against with Ancestry Visa applications is having the correct documents. They’re needed to prove their tie to a UK born- grandparent is legitimate. Birth certificates often get lost over time, particularly when migration is factored in.

    But if you don’t have your grandparent’s birth certificate, don’t despair. It is possible to source documents from the appropriate ancestry archives. This can be done by putting in a request for data and with an immigration lawyer, this is achieved quickly by submitting an official Subject Access Request for Data (S.A.R). The appropriate bodies will then locate the relevant grandparent’s birth certificate and have a copy sent to you.


    1. No money

    If you want to apply for an Ancestry Visa, you’ll need £1,200-£1,600 in your bank account 90 days before the application is submitted to the Home Office. This is to prove that you will be able to support yourself when you first arrive in the UK.

    Many people may be concerned about this when they are looking into applying for an Ancestry Visa, as they may be unable to access this money through their own income. However, what many people don’t realise is that you don’t have to raise this money by yourself.

    Many applicants secure their funds using a sponsor. This can be either a parent, colleague or friend – it’s up to you. To be able to do this, your sponsor will need to send a letter to UKVI stating that they will act as your guarantor during your time in the UK.


    1. No job

    While many people think that you need to have work set up for your entry to the UK on an Ancestry visa, this is not actually the case. To satisfy the application requirements, you need to be looking for work.  

    This means that you can make a UK Ancestry Visa application without having a specific job lined up. As long as you sign up for recruitment agencies and begin job-hunting when you get to the UK, you will meet the requirements.


    1. No prospects

    Are you hoping to study a subject or course before you enter the world of work? What many don’t realise is that this is a possibility with an Ancestry Visa. With this category of visa, you can study full-time in the UK providing you work in a part-time job while you are doing it.

    This job can be anything, from working in the research department of your University to working as a barista.


    1. No idea

    Many people avoid applying for Ancestry Visas because they are not sure if they are eligible. You can apply for a UK Ancestry Visa if you are a Commonwealth citizen. You will need to prove that one of your grandparents was born in the UK.

    The lawyers at IAS offer an eligibility assessment which will establish whether or not you meet these requirements, along with the other, more complex requirements necessary to make an application. Contact us now to arrange an assessment or for advice and application guidance. Assessments can be carried out at one of our offices, located in London and other areas of the UK, or over the phone.

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