On 11 January 2016, the Government announced proposed changes to the fees for visas, immigration and nationality applications and associated premium services for 2016-17.
The proposed fee changes are likely to apply from 6 April 2016. With these changes, the Government intends to reduce taxpayer contributions towards the Border, Immigration and Citizenship system and ensure that by 2019-20 the system is self-funded by those who access services.
The main changes are:
- Citizenship and settlement applications will be subject to a 25% increase
- Visitor, work (including Tier 2 and Tier 1 categories) and student visa applications will be restricted to a 2% increase
- Targeted increases to optional premium services. This would include an increase in fees for super-premium and premium services overseas and also the same day premium service and priority postal service within the UK.
In addition to the above, the Government has proposed some new fee categories. These include the following:
Fee category/2016-17 proposed fee
- Electronic visa waiver (currently open to Oman, Qatar and United Arab Emirates passport holders) - £15
- Administration of Secure English language Testing (SELT) - £200
- Processing of an application or claim which is subsequently rejected as invalid - £25
- Out of hours premium service appointments - £63
The Government has also proposed to introduce a three month trial of the ‘Premium Sponsor Scheme’ for Tier 2 and Tier 5 sponsors. The fee for this trial will be £6,250 for a large sponsor and £2,000 for a small sponsor. There will be no other changes to fees for sponsorship categories.
The full proposed fee table can be found on the UKVI website.