The new UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI)’s proposed immigration fee changes will be enacted as of 6 April 2018. The new immigration and nationality fees had been laid before and approved by Parliament in March 2018. The raise in fees comes shortly after the announcement to increase the mandatory NHS surcharge later this year. This surcharge applies to all non-EEA nationals wishing to settle in the UK. The cost of applying for a UK settlement partner or spouse visa and purchasing an optional priority service fee is per applicant, including any dependents. The Home Office application processing fee is non-refundable regardless of the outcome and separate from the NHS healthcare surcharge.
The UKVI processing fees for settlement applications in the fiancée, spouse, de facto partner and dependent child categories submitted from outside the UK will rise to £1,523 per applicant (currently £1,464). Postal applications for further leave to remain (FLR) under the partner visa route will rise to £1,033 (currently £993). Applications for indefinite leave to remain (ILR) for partners and spouses of British Citizens and UK legal permanent residents (i.e. right of abode and ILR holders) with no children, will increase to £2,389 (postal applications) and £2,999 (same day applications made in person), respectively. It is currently taking the UKVI three to five months to process postal FLR and ILR applications, which explains a high demand for the same day appointments at the UKVI Public Enquiry Offices (PEO) across the UK. Leaving the visa renewal and booking a PEO appointment to the last minute can result in having to travel further away from a preferred location due to overbooking at the local PEO. Some applicants living in London must travel to Wales or Scotland to apply in person due to not being able to get a local appointment in the London area.
Applicants within the UK requiring an urgent decision on a partner or spouse visa application, must make an appointment to attend the local UKVI Public Enquiry Offices (PEO) in Croydon, Sheffield, Liverpool and other locations throughout the UK. Same day PEO appointments can be booked up to 45 days in advance. This service will cost additional £610 (currently £590) which must be paid on top of the standard application fees as listed in the categories above. The UKVI priority service is also available for applicants seeking a family visa to enter the UK. The UKVI settlement priority (fast track) visa service fee for spouses, partners and dependent children applying outside of the UK will be increased to £573 (currently £551) per applicant.
Dependent children must pay a separate fee.