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Tier 4 Visa Extension in the UK

UK Visas and Immigration made changes to the Tier 4 application system earlier this year and you will need to complete your application form on-line.  

If you have any questions then please contact one of our visa advisers by calling 0121 204 4567 or 0121 204 4007.  You can also email the visa advisers at issu@aston.ac.uk

Important news:  The visa application fees will increase from 6th April 2014 so that it will cost £422 to apply online and send your documents by post and £922 to apply in person at a Public Enquiry Office.

You need 40 points: 30 points are awarded for having a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) and 10 Points are awarded for having the correct level of funds available.

You can check that you have sufficient points to be granted entry to the UK before you make your application by checking using the UKVI self assessment tool.  You will need to scroll to the bottom of the page and select "start self assessment".  

A CAS is a Confirmation of Acceptance for Study: a unique code which links you to Aston University on the UK Border Agency database. Your CAS confirms that Aston University is your educational "sponsor". 

If you are already enrolled as a student at Aston UNiversity, then the immigration advisers in The Hub Advice Zone will be able to arrange a CAS for you. You will need to complete a short pre-CAS questionnaire about your previous studies in the UK and will also need to show that you have enough money available to meet the requirements for a Tier 4 General visa. 

CAS for new courses will be provided by the admissions staff in your School of Study at Aston University.

CAS must be no more than six months old on the date you apply for your visa.

You will need to show that you have enough money available to cover your living costs and tuition fees for your course.  You will need to show that this money has been available to you throughout a 28 day period that ends no more than one month before you apply for your visa.  The money must be held in an account in your name and this includes joint accounts.  You can also use money held in your Parents' bank accounts but you will need to send your original birth certificate (which must show your Parents' names) and an original signed and dated letter from your parent(s) confirming they are your parent(s) and they consent to their money being used to fund your UK studies. Please note: this can be very difficult and we strongly advise that you arrange for your money to be held in an account in your name. 

The amount of money you will need to show each month for your application will increase in July 2014.  If you already have a Tier 4 General visa and are applying for a visa extension then you will probably need to show that you have at least £1,600 (£1,640 from July 2014) available to you for living costs.  If you have completed less than 6 months of your current course at Aston University, or have just completed courses of less than six months' duration then you may need to show that you have £7,200 (£7,380 from July 2014) available to you for living costs.  

We recommend that you keep your maintenance money in your account whilst you are waiting for your visa application to be considered.

  • Tuition fees: you must be able to prove you have either paid your tuition fees in full or that the remaining fees owed to the University are in your bank account.

  • University accommodation fees: If you pay money to Aston University for accommodation fees then we can inlcude thsi information on your CAS.  The UKBA will be able to take up to £1000 of your accommodation fee payments into account which will reduce the amount of money you need to show in your bank account for living costs. 

Example bank statement: We now have an example copy of what your bank statements should include. Please note this is an example and must not be used with any visa application. 

You can prove you have these funds available by providing:

  • An original printed personal bank statement, no more than one month old, in your name OR
  • An original printed personal bank statement, no more than one month old, in your parents' name. You must also supply your birth certificate and an original signed and dated letter from your parent(s) confirming they are your parent(s) and they consent to their money being used to fund your UK studies OR
  • There are other methods but the above options are the most common. Contact us for information if you are a sponsored student.

The UKVI has strict guidelines about the format for your bank statements.  If the bank statement is printed in a Branch (ad hoc) then it needs to be printed on letter headed paper.  Electronic bank statements printed from an internet banking account can be accepted but they will need to be stamped by the bank on every single page. 

In all  cases statements must include the following information:

  • Transactions covering at least 28 days.
  • The name of the account holder.
  • The full account number.
  • The Bank's name and logo.
  • The amount of money available.

Any financial documents which do not fulfil these requirements may not be accepted by the UKVI and could result in your visa application being confused.

You must provide professional translations of documents which are not written in English.

If your bank account is not in the UK, you must include a conversion of the closing balance to Sterling quoting the OANDA website and the exchange rate that applies on the day you submit your online application. You will also need to provide an official translation of your bank statement.

UKVI will only accept evidence from some banks in India, Cameroon, Ghana, Pakistan, Philippines, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Iran.  UKVI has published lists of institutions in those countries that do satisfactorily verify financial statements. Please contact us if your money is in a bank account in one of these countries and we will check the UKVI list for you.

Students from some nationalities considered to be "low risk" may not need to send every document with their application.Evidence is always required but not always requested, so please contact us before you send your application if you think this applies to you.

Example bank statement: We now have an example copy of what your bank statements should include. Please note this is an example and must not be used with any visa application. 

There are a number of documents you need to include in your Tier 4 application.

UKVI will only accept original documents and you cannot send copies.  You will also need to provide professional translations of documents which are not written in English.

You will need to complete a "Tier 4 (General) student online application."  Our immigration advisers can help you with this application and can send the application through our Batch Scheme

You will need to send the following documents with your visa application:

  • Your current and previous passports

  • A printed and signed copy of your application form

  • Your police registration certificate, if you have one

  • Two brand new colour identical passport photos

  • Documents to prove you have the required funds (see section above) 

  • Your Biometric Residence Permit for the UK, if you have one 

  • Any qualifications that have been listed in your CAS

This is explained in our application guide; Ten steps to extending your Tier 4 General visa

If you want to send your application by post, you will need to complete a "Tier 4 (General)  on-line application".  You will need to create an account for the UKVI online application system and complete the Tier 4 General on-line application.  You can find a completed example which will help you to complete the application here.   It is very important that you check that all of the information in your on-line application form is correct.  It may not be possible to make changes after the application has been submitted! 

You will need to arrange an appointment to see an immigration adviser at The Hub Advice Zone so that we can check your application and arrange a CAS for you.  You will need to complete a short Pre-CAS questionnaire which you can collect from The Hub reception desk or download here.  You will also need to bring your login details and the following documents with you to your appointment with your immigration adviser:

  • Your current passport and any other passports that you have used to travel to the UK

  • Your Biometric Residence Permit, if you have one (this is your visa ID card). 

  • Your Police Registration Certificate (only if you are required to register with the police). 

  • Two recent identical colour passport sized photos with your name written on the back. 

  • Your bank statements or other financial evidence

  • Any qualifications that you used as the basis for your offer to study at Aston (only if you are applying for a visa for a new course or have not yet completed 6 months of your current course)

  • Your completed Pre-CAS questionnaire 

We will send your application through the Student Batch Scheme.

If you will be applying by post the we will normally send your application through The Student Batch Scheme.  This is a special scheme that is run between UKVI and Universities across the UK.  The responsibility for completing the form and supplying the correct documents is still yours, but an International Student Adviser will check your application and send it by recorded delivery to UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI). We will then act as your contact for the application. The person making the decision at the UKVI may contact us if they have any questions about your application before they make their decision.

After your International Student Adviser has checked your online application, documents and Pre-CAS questionnaire they will arrange CAS for you and ask to you make another appointment to submit your online application and hand in your documents.  We will send your documents to UKVI by recorded delivery with a printed and signed copy of your application cover sheet. 

Your documents, passport/s and new visa will be returned to The Hub Advice Zone, and we will email you when they have arrived. The letter from UKVI inviting you to attend a post office to give your biometric details may still come to your current address, as given on your application form but we will contact you by email if the letter is sent to The Hub Advice Zone. 

Not all Tier 4 students can bring their dependants to the UK with them.  You will normally only be able to have dependants with you in the UK if you are studying at Aston for a postgraduate course that lasts more than 12 months or you are a government sponsored students studying for a course that lasts at least 6 months.  There are some other special circumstances in which dependants that currently have or have recently had permission to be in the UK as a Tier 4 student’s dependant may also qualify but this is rather complicated and you should contact us for further advice. 

If you dependants are in the UK with you and will be applying to extend their visas at the same time as you, you will be able to include them in your Tier 4 (General) online application.  It currently costs £305 per dependant to apply online and send documents by post and £705 for each dependant when you apply in person at a Public Enquiry Office.  The visa application fees will increase from 6th April 2014 so that it will cost £422 for each dependant to apply online and send documents by post and £922 to apply in person at a Public Enquiry Office. 

You will need to show that there is enough money available to cover your dependants living costs in addition to your living costs and the tuition fees for your course.  You will need to show that this money has been available throughout a 28 day period that ends no more than one month before you apply for your visa.  The money must be held in an account in your name and/or the dependant’s name and this includes joint accounts. You cannot use money held in an account that is solely in your dependant’s name as evidence that you have enough money to meet your own maintenance requirements for your Tier 4 application. 

The amount of money you and you dependants will need to show each month for your application will increase in July 2014.  If you already have a Tier 4 General visa and are applying for a visa extension then you will probably need to show that there is at least £900 (£920 from July 2014) available for each dependant’s living costs.  If you have completed less than 6 months of your current course at Aston University, or have just completed courses of less than six months' duration then you may need to show that there is £4,050 (£4,140 from July 2014) available for each dependant’s living costs.

For example:

If your partner and child are in the UK as your dependants, you are applying to extend your visas together and you have already completed more than 6 months of your current postgraduate course at Aston you would need to show a total of £3,400 for you and your dependants’ living costs (£1,600 for you and £900 for each dependant).  You will also need to show that you have enough money to pay your tuition fees.  

Information checked and updated 02/04/14.  GB

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