In an effort to shorten the wait times for UK visa applicants and those with appeals before the Immigration Tribunal, the UK Government has announced two measures aimed at hastening immigration decisions.
Priority Service Reinstated For Pending Application
The Home Office has set an efficient 12-week timeline for deciding applications from those outside of the United Kingdom who wish to settle in the UK to reunite with a family member or partner. Whilst the Home Office is working to prioritize applications for the Ukraine Visa Scheme, family visa requests submitted from outside of the UK may take up to 24 long weeks for processing.
If you have already applied for a family visa entry clearance in the UK, then there is good news! As of 9 January 2023, applicants will be able to upgrade their application to a priority service, enabling them to receive decisions on their visa applications much faster. Whilst there is currently a suspension of super priority and priority services for those applying for family or partner visas from abroad.
All current applicants with a partner or family visa application in the works will be notified by email and given the chance to expedite the processing time of 3 weeks through an upgraded, 15 working-day priority service. The fast-track option will get your answer on your partner or family visa application within 15 working days or 3 weeks for just £573.
Despite the reintroduction of priority service for a pending partner and family visa applications submitted from outside the UK, many individuals who are considering applying must still wait up to 24 weeks, before receiving an answer on their application.
The Home Office is excited to announce that a priority visa service for outside the UK will become available in early 2023, significantly reducing waiting times of up to 24 weeks down to as little as 12 weeks.
More Immigration Appeals To Be Heard
In order to speed up immigration decision-making, the Government has announced plans to hear thousands more migration appeals at the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal before the end of March 2023!
The UK Government has made a significant commitment to addressing the backlog of immigration and asylum appeals. Through an investment of £5 million, UK Government plans to expand operations at the Immigration Tribunal so that up to 9,000 extra cases can be heard by March 2023.
With over 25,000 immigration cases awaiting resolution in the immigration appeal system, a significant backlog of individuals is waiting on decisions that will determine their future.