Delays in UK Visa processing seems to be the talk of 2018 in the Home Office. Why is this happening? There are several reasons for this but obviously, if you are one of the victims of terrible delays in your UK Visa applications, then the reasons are secondary for you. What you need now is for someone to tell you what you should do next. Which is why our associates at The Smart Move 2 UK have put together a list of things you should do now if you feel paralyzed due to no concrete information about what is going on with your visa application.
We have followed this list up with a list of possible reasons for these delays in UK visa processing in 2018. If you feel that your application could be delayed due to one (or more) of the reasons mentioned, then it would help you take the necessary course of action. Even if that means just waiting patiently, which could very well be the case.
But before we get to that, here’s a quick checklist of what you should do next if you are facing an unusually long wait in hearing back from the Home Office regarding your UK Visa.
Paid Service Inquiry
You may contact the UKVI (United Kingdom Visas and Immigration) directly, provide them with your details, and ask them what is causing the delay. This is the most effective course of action, as the chances are highest for you to understand why your application is taking so long. There is a good chance that a talk with the UKVI should put your concerns to rest. And if not, at least you’ll know it. However, like all good things, the paid service inquiry isn’t free. Sitel UK is the new commercial partner to the Home Office responsible for service inquiries, and any email or phone call to Sitel will be chargeable. (An email to Sitel will cost you £5.48)
Contact an MP
If you are already residing in the UK on a valid visa, but are waiting for a response on your extension application, or if you are waiting for a Spouse Visa application response, you may contact the local Member of UK Parliament of the area of your residence (or your British Spouse’s residence). MPs in the UK are a great source for tackling any grievances regarding immigration related issues, or other things. You should have a clear picture of why your application is taking so long if you have a chat with an MP.
While the Judicial Review is used to review any decisions made by the Home Office regarding certain visa applications, you may also call for a Judicial Review if you feel that a due process is not followed. An unspecified delay in a response for your UK Visa application may be a case of not following the due process for the same. Therefore, you may file for a Judicial Review in certain cases of prolonged delay in reciprocation by the Home Office. See next point for more information on the same.
Consult a professional
If you believe that your application is taking longer than required, with no justifiable reason for the same, you may, of course, choose to follow any one of the above-listed options. However, in order to be absolutely sure that you not only choose the right option but also go about the option in the right way, it’s always best to rely on guidance from people who are well versed in immigration matters and law of the UK. In other words, consult a professional immigration consultancy or a UK immigration law firm, in order to have an authority’s opinion on the matter. This could end up saving you a lot of unnecessary procedures and other hassles.
Before following through with any of the options listed, however, it is important to have a look at some general reasons why your UK Visa application may be taking longer than expected. We recommend that you have a look at the list below, to have a better understanding of why your particular application may be caught up:
1) Improper paperwork: The documentation that you submit must be complete, and well organized. Any trouble for your assessing officer in finding the relevant information in order to process an application could potentially lead to major delays in your visa application.
2) Non-Payment of fees: We are not saying that you have deliberately not paid for the application. However, it is possible that you inadvertently may have left out paying certain fees. Please ensure that this is not the case. If you do feel you may have not paid all the fees you were required to, you may consult a professional immigration advisor who would guide you on the same.
3) Verification of information: Depending on the type of visa application you fall under, the assessing officer might have to contact various departments in order to ensure that the information you have provided is verifiable. This process may take longer than you might think.
Be smart, and empower yourself with the required knowledge of UK visas and immigration procedures. The best way to tackle issues like these is to stay up to date with the latest happenings.
Interesting Note to keep in mind regarding these Delays:
Most of the time delays seem to be from specific countries with a history of immigration abuse. If you look at statistics from India, there seem to be a lower chance of severe delays. This implies that if your application from India has been taking longer than you expected, it’s probably because of one of the reasons mentioned above that you can fix.