Applying inside the UK
Extending your Tier 4 visa - applying in the UK
If you are coming to King's and currently hold a Tier 4 visa for another institution, you must apply to extend your visa before you will be able to enrol with us. This is because, under Tier 4, visas are issued for study at a particular institution. Once you are able to show that you have made an application for a visa for King's College London you will be able to enrol, even if a decision is yet to be made on your application. For more information, see the Tier 4 policy guidance.
If you hold a visa that is not a Tier 4 visa, check that you are allowed to extend your visa from within the UK. You can also choose to apply for entry clearance from your home country rather than extending your visa in the UK (for example, if you are returning home for a holiday).
You need to start preparing your application a minimum of two months before your expiry date. You must submit an application before your visa expires. Please make sure that you complete all the stages of the application, including completing the biometric enrolment process. Failure to do so will result in your application being rejected.
Please note that both the PBS Dependant application form and Tier 4 application form (for applications made in the UK) are updated regularly. Always check that you are using the most current version of the application form before sending it.
Making a Tier 4 application
In order to make a Tier 4 application you must have Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) number which you can request from a Student Services desk. You must also fulfill the maintenance requirements as stipulated by the UK Visas & Immigration (UKVI).
Please note that all the rules are subject to change and you should always check the most current guidance with UKVI. UKCISA also provides guidance on how to complete the form. Please contact an adviser if you have any questions about the form and the immigration rules. If you would like to have your application form checked by the Advice & Guidance Team before you send it or make an application in person, please book an appointment through Student Services. Please note, at busy times students can wait up to two or three weeks for an appointment so please prepare your application in plenty of time.
Please note that applicants applying to extend their visas in the UK may now be required to attend a credibility interview. If you are invited for interview you must attend, or your application will be refused. You will be asked a few short questions about your choice of course and institution, so the Home Office can be certain you are a genuine student.
Completing the form
An important update: UKVI have introduced a new type of visa application processing service (known as UKVCAS), which involves attending an appointment at a UK Visa Service Centre to submit your biometrics and verify your identity. You can book this appointment after you have submitted the online visa application form and made the payments for the visa application fee and Immigration Health Surcharge. For more information, please view the gov.uk webpage on the new services.
When you are submitting your application online, it is vital to ensure you complete the correct form!
The UKVI website is confusing - you need to click on "extend" or use the link below.
If you click "apply" you will complete the form for applying from outside the UK, and your application will be invalid.
- If you apply in the UK you will need to use the Tier 4 online form.
- We have produced additional guidance for the online form.
- You should ensure you also read the Tier 4 guidance carefully before submitting an application.
- You should be aware that when you're using the online form, the date you are deemed to be applying is the date you submit the form online and pay the application fee. Any documents you upload or provide to the UKVI must have met the requirements on the day the application was submitted.
You should follow the online instructions very carefully when making your application. UKCISA has lots of useful information that will help you make your application.
You will be required to submit evidence of maintenance (see below) and evidence of your qualifications which were used to obtain the offer. As of 5th November 2018, these documents can be originals or copies (with the exception of your passport and BRP, which must always be the originals). If you are a "low risk national" you may not need to include everything, but you will need to declare that you have the documents available, and may be asked for them at a later date.
We would strongly recommend that you upload PDF scans of all of these documents online when prompted by the Sopra Steria website, after you have booked your appointment to submit your biometric information at the Visa Support Centre.
If you don't upload your documents in advance, bringing your documents to your biometrics appointment and having them scanned and uploaded by the staff at the Visa Support Centre incurs an extra fee.
If you are planning a trip home before your visa expires then you can apply for new entry clearance from there. This is cheaper and sometimes quicker than applying in the UK. You need to meet the same rules, but the form you need to complete is different.
You should always read the Tier 4 guidance carefully when preparing your application. We recommend that, where possible, you book an appointment with the Advice & Guidance Team to check your application before submitting it.
You are required to show that you have a minimum amount of funding to cover your course fees and living costs. If you are self-funding money must be in your account for a consecutive 28 days before you submit your application and cannot drop below this amount at any point during this period. This money then needs to stay in your account until your visa application has been decided, as the Home Office may check with your bank that you still have the money. We recommend you read our guidance for further information.
If you are self-funding this must be in a bank account in your name or, if this is not possible, a parent’s name. If you use a parent's account you must also submit a letter from them confirming you may use these funds, and your original birth certificate. You should check the guidance for exactly what documentation is acceptable. If you are being funded by an international company, government or scholarship agency you will need to provide a letter. You must check the Tier 4 guidance for what needs to be included in the letter.
If you're applying for the Doctorate Extension Scheme you will need to have £2530 in a bank account for 28 days without dropping before applying.
The financial requirements are quite complicated. If you are missing any documents or they do not fully meet the Tier 4 requirements your application is likely to be refused. If you have any queries check with the Advice & Guidance Team. You might also find UKCISA's website useful.
If you are required to have an ATAS certificate in order to undertake your course you must have obtained this before you submit your visa application. You should ensure you apply for ATAS in plenty of time as it can take several weeks for the certificate to be issued at busy times of year.
If you are extending your student visa in order to complete your course and you require an ATAS certificate you must obtain a new certificate for the purposes of your application. This includes PhD students who are writing up their theses and who required ATAS in the past, and students extending for the Doctorate Extension Scheme who required ATAS (except for those applying within the final 28 days prior to the date of award).
If you do not supply it when you submit your visa application, then your application will be incomplete and will be refused.
You may find our ATAS Advice Guide useful.
Keeping your details up to date
It's very important that UKVI has up to date details for you. If they do not, you might miss important correspondence. You may also be fined if your details are out of date.
You may have given a temporary address, or the the institution's address, when you applied for entry clearance in your home country, in which case you must report a change of address to the Home Office once you have a proper UK postal address.
Likewise, any correspondence address that you use when making a Tier 4 application in the UK will become your permanent contact address in the Home Office's records until you make another application. If your address changes while your visa application is pending, you should update your address with UKVI using their online address change form.
If you need to report a change of address after the outcome of your application is decided and you have your new BRP, we recommend that you report a change of address using the paper Migrant Change of Circumstances form [^].
You must also report your change of address to:
- your Tier 4 sponsor, who is obliged to hold current contact details for you
- the police, if you have a Police Registration Certificate.
- your official financial sponsor, if you have one
- your home country's Embassy or High Commission, if they require it.
Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information herein, King's College London can accept no responsibility for errors or omissions.
King's College London is not responsible for the content or reliability of the linked websites and does not necessarily endorse the views expressed within.