Temporary Visa Extensions During Coronavirus to Last Until July 31st 2020
Since the Coronavirus pandemic continues to impact life in the UK, the Home Office announced on 22nd May that those whose leave expired after 24th January 2020 will be granted visa extensions lasting until 31st July 2020.
Initially, these temporary visa extensions were to remain in effect until 31st May. However, as we reach the end of May, it has become increasingly clear that further extensions are a necessity.
With travel restrictions and self-isolation measures still firmly in place across the UK and much of the globe, it would be unreasonable to expect migrants to leave the country at the end of the month.
Those whose leave expired after 24th January 2020 will be granted visa extensions lasting until 31st July 2020
With this in mind, the Home Office’s increased visa extensions are welcomed by all. This ensures that migrants do not find themselves unavoidably breaching the conditions of their immigration permission.
Announcing this further extension, the Home Secretary Priti Patel confirmed: “By extending people’s visas further, we are giving them peace of mind that they are able to stay in the UK until the end of July if they are unable to leave the country safely.”
Switching to a long-term visa from within the UK
Along with this increased visa extension period, those who wish to apply for long-term visas in the UK are able to do so from within the country as opposed to being subject to the typical requirement of applying from outside of the UK.
For example, those who are currently permitted to be in the UK under a Visit Visa would usually be required to leave the country prior to submitting an application for a long-term visa. However, in light of the Coronavirus pandemic, the Home Office has granted the ability to switch to a long-term visa from within the country.
“By extending people’s visas further, we are giving them peace of mind that they are able to stay in the UK until the end of July if they are unable to leave the country safely.”
It is important to note, however, that this exception only applies to those whose temporary leave is due to expire (or has already expired) between 24th January to 31st July 2020.
If you are currently in the UK with temporary leave and wish to apply for a long-term visa such as a Spouse Visa, IAS’ immigration lawyers are able to provide expert assistance.
Contact us on 0333 305 9375.
Is the increased extension period automatically applied to those with expired leave?
Unfortunately, the increased visa extensions are not automatically applied to those whose leave has/is due to expire between 24th January and 31st July 2020.
Since the UK’s Covid-19 outbreak, the Home Office has established a Coronavirus immigration team with the aim of assisting those who wish to apply for a temporary visa extension or who require general assistance with their immigration permission in light of the pandemic.
To ensure that you are protected by the government’s visa extensions (effective until July 31st 2020), you must apply via an online form to inform the team that your leave has expired. You will then be issued a temporary visa extension, allowing you to remain in the UK without breaching conditions.
Home Office announces increased visa extensions [Image: Gov UK]
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