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The rules that apply to students who are neither British nor EU nationals are now dealt with under the Home Office’s Tier 4 Points-Based System.   

This category is designed to allow both children and adults from non-EU countries to live and study in the UK and gain recognised qualifications from UK colleges and universities under the Tier 4 Points-Based system.

Subject to satisfying the Home Office requirements upon completion of studies in the UK an individual may then switch into another immigration category which can lead to indefinite leave to remain in the UK.

In order to obtain a Tier 4 visa, generally the applicant must gain 30 points for obtaining a Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies letter from their prospective university or college. The applicant will have to demonstrate that they have been offered a place at the college or university and also that they have the requisite English language skills as specified by the Home Office. An applicant must also produce documents which demonstrate that they have sufficient funds to cover their course fees for the first year of their studies and maintain themselves whilst in the UK. Obtaining a Tier 4 visa is also dependent on the applicant having a proven track record in studying, including a qualification equivalent to National Qualification Framework in the UK.

The spouse and / or children of the main applicant may also apply to enter the UK as dependents as the main applicant.  A child may also apply to study in the UK and but must demonstrate that he or she is able to pay their school fees and have funds in place to maintain themselves for the period that they are in the UK.

There are many different rules that may apply to a student in the UK or a potential student and we therefore advise that you contact one of our experienced immigration solicitors by using this link to arrange a consultation.

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We specialise in every aspect of immigration, asylum and human rights law involving migrants and have been involved in several cases that have played a part in shaping the interpretation of the law in the UK.

We employ expert immigration solicitors and benefit from having experienced in-house counsel to consult. Our firm offers a range of legal services, including advocacy at the Immigration and Asylum Tribunals, the High Court, the Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.


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