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The decision of the UK to leave the European Union has unquestionably had a detrimental effect on students who do not hold settled or pre-settled status. The UK government has changed the rules on EU student visas in order to make them more similar to those of other international students. Now, all overseas applicants must apply for a visa before entering the UK to study courses over 6 months.

The UK’s visa process for overseas students has been made easier since late 2020. It has streamlined its visa process for overseas students following an increase in the number that requires visas. With the introduction of a new graduate visa, students will have more visa options for post-graduation as well.

Here are a few key changes:

Simplified Application Process

The UK has introduced a new application process for student visas which will make it easier to deal with a large number of applications from European Union citizens. The Home Office launched its “UK Immigration ID Check App” in order to speed up the process. With the new app, you can use your biometric data from an EU passport or current UK Biometric Residence Permit to make a visa application. The app will allow visa applicants to use their biometric data without having them attend an appointment at the centre.

The initial problems with processing applications made via the app at the start of the academic year 2021/22 have been largely resolved ahead of this academic year. This year, the 5-day Priority Processing service was reinserted and both EU students and students with UK visas were able to use this app as a means to speed up their student visa application process.

The app grants you an electronic immigration status that can be accessed using a code generated on your mobile.

Relaxed Financial Requirements

The post-Brexit student visa rules introduced at the end of 2020 allowed individuals to apply from within the UK without showing that they have enough money for themselves if they are living in the UK for more than one calendar year prior to the application.

The Home Office has eliminated the most complicated element in visa extension or switched from another UK immigration category for students. The financial documentation you previously submitted is no longer required for Home Office to process the application which also means no need to work about refusal or delays due to financial documentation!

Graduate Visa

The UK launched a new visa category on 1 July 2021. It was to attract international students educated at universities in the country to stay in the UK to build up their carrier. This graduate visa will allow you to extend your permission for 2 years to stay in the UK without sponsorship from either university or an employer.

Graduate visa holders will be able to take any work opportunities that are available and develop the skills necessary for their careers. You will not be able to get permanent residence through this route but if offers a lot more opportunities to oversea students compared to pre-Brexit.