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Latest phase of student visa rule changes come into force 4 July | Immigration Matters

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The UK Border Agency has published the latest set of changes to the Immigration Rules, affecting Tier 4 students, which were laid in Parliament this week.

The new restrictions, which will mainly hit private colleges, will come into effect on 4 July 2011.

The Home Secretary announced changes to the Immigration Rules in a statement to Parliament on 22 March, which follow the first set of changes on 21 April.

The border agency (UKBA) said that the ‘aim of the revised Immigration Rules is to deliver a strong migration system which tackles immigration abuse, while allowing genuine students to study at genuine colleges’.

From 4 July the UK Border Agency will:

  • restrict work entitlements to migrants studying at higher educational institutions (HEIs) and publicly funded further education colleges only;
  • restrict the sponsorship of dependants to those studying at postgraduate level at HEIs on courses lasting at least 12 months, and government-sponsored students on courses lasting at least 6 months;
  • require education providers to vouch that a new course represents genuine academic progression;
  • ensure that maintenance funds are genuinely available to the applicant, by introducing a declaration on the visa application form;
  • commit to publish a list of financial institutions that we consider, on the basis of experience, do not verify financial statements to our satisfaction in more than 50 per cent of a sample of cases;
  • introduce a streamlined application process for low-risk nationals applying to attend courses with Highly Trusted Sponsors;
  • extend the list of courses for which students must receive ATAS clearance;
  • restrict the ability to deliver accountancy courses accredited by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) to those sponsors accorded platinum or gold status by ACCA; and
  • clarify the position of overseas universities with campuses in the UK.

A revised version of our policy guidance document for Tier 4 migrants, and a statement of intent summarising the new student visa policy, can also be downloaded from UKBA website. You can find the revised guidance for Tier 4 sponsors in the Sponsor guidance section of the UKBA website.

The UKBA also announced that the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA) and the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) will extend their activities to cover privately funded providers, in line with their commitment that all privately funded sponsors would be inspected or reviewed by one of the publicly recognised bodies by the end of 2012. Source: UK Border Agency.

The changes will be seen as a major blow for private colleges, already competing against government owned providers at a disadvantage.

According to Home Office figures published by the BBC yesterday the student visa changes could cost the UK economy £2.4bn.

The changes will not affect Bulgarian and Romanian students who wish to come to the UK to study and work on a Yellow Card.

See also:

Student Visa crackdown could cost UK £2.4bn say Home Office

Top British academics launch £18,000pa private college in London

Why do international students choose to study in the UK?

Free service launched to help overseas students study at UK Universities

New Tier 4 Student Visa rules implemented 21 April 2011, but will students applying to private colleges be allowed to work?

Student visas can be cancelled if a student changes college without permission

International student numbers soar as UK remains an attractive place to study

If you need any immigration advice or are worried about the new immigration rules or need help with Sponsorship or Work Permits, Visa, ILR/Settlement, Citizenship, dependant visa or an appeal against a refusal please email: or visit

Looking for a college or University?

UKUS is a free University and College Admissions and advice service based in London, UK. Students interested in studying abroad can complete the Online UKUS Registration Form for more details.

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8 Responses to “Latest phase of student visa rule changes come into force 4 July”
Read them below or add one

  1. A comment to sular I don’t know if you are a genuine student when it took you 10 years still studying.I think you are here working keeping your visa extended maybe illegally so better’ve been studying for 10 years but your english still not good.

  2. […] Latest phase of student visa rule changes come into force 4 July […]

  3. Asylum seeker are enjoying full benefit on tax payer, claim public fund on fake dox. Working on cash payment withouy tax. Unique system and policies.Most of the students away from their family, struggling for better futrue but all in vain… just spoiling the life in most civilise country.

  4. I am like in London since 2001. I have complete my study and working on student visa last 5 year. My employer refuse to offer me proper documents to work. Working 8 to 14 a day 6 days in a week and minimiun wages is GBP 800 PM.

    I hv complete 9 year and 8 month on studnet visa.Every time it cost me GBP 500 to 1000 to renew my visa.

    There is 4 month behind to complete 10 year. What is my future in London. Is it possible I will be entitle to indefinated or proper document to works.
    Most of the employers are cheating the students paying less and lenghtty working hrs.



  5. jimeet patel says :

    hi, my name is jimeet patel. and i have already finished my b2 level course exam but my result still not come, so how can next process. and immigration office declair 4th june change the visa rulse. how can i next step.pls give me further information.

  6. […] this week the UK Border Agency published the latest set of changes to the Immigration Rules, affecting Tier 4 students, which were laid in Parliament. The new restrictions, which will mainly hit private colleges, will […]

  7. […] estimate the new measures, and Immigration Rule changes to student visas set to come into force on 4 July, will cut net migration by 230,000 by the end of the current […]

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