Tier 4 (General) allows students from all over the world to study and take advantage of educational opportunities available in the UK.
This tier puts the onus on colleges/universities to govern and manage their own students and to report any students who fail to reach certain bench-mark standards including class attendance.
How to qualify
In order to qualify to apply for a Tier 4 Student visa, an applicant will need an electronic Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies Unique Reference Number (CAS) from a licensed education provider and to show that they have sufficient funds and maintenance in their bank accounts to support them during their studies.
“Sufficient funds and maintenance” depends on the location of the educational institution as there is a set amount of monies needed for different parts of the UK.
In order to qualify for an extension, the same criteria applies, save that the demonstration of sufficient funds and maintenance differs.
Students are restricted to studying at a certain ‘level’ for a specific amount of time. This prevents students from abusing the system by prolonging studying at a basic level to avoid completion of their studies.
In addition, to study below degree level, a student has to demonstrate that their English language capability is at a certain level. This is in order to avoid students paying substantial course fees for courses that they may not actually be capable of following. This can be demonstrated in a number of ways – we can of course advise and assist further in these regards if necessary.
Length of stay and right to work
The Tier 4 Student visa will normally be granted for as long as the course for which the confirmation of acceptance of studies (CAS) has been granted.
You will be limited to working 20 hours a week during term time if studying a course at degree level or above, and 10 hours a week during term time if studying a course below degree level. You are however allowed to work as much as you like during holiday time, up to a maximum of 3 months.
Spouses and dependants
Immediate family members will be allowed to join or accompany the student, but only if the student is studying a course of twelve months or more at postgraduate level (above degree level). The rules in this regard have been revised recently so do contact us for further advice and clarification in this regard..
Please also note that family members accompanying a student on this type of visa will not be allowed to work if the student is studying a course below degree level and/or if the course that the student is intending to follow is less than 12 months in length.
As this is a temporary visa it does not lead to permanent residence. However, other options are available upon completion of studies. Please contact one of our consultants for more information.