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Low risk nationalities

From 4 July 2011, as updated on 07 Apr 2019, UK Visas & Immigration(UKVI), a division of the Home Office, has introduced differentiation arrangements for students of certain nationalities that they deem to be low risk.

The visa application process is simplified in that they require much less documentary evidence to be submitted with their Tier 4 visa application.

For TIER 4 Dependants requirements, please read the information at the bottom on the page.

A Tier 4 student qualifies for the differentiation arrangements if they:

  • Are sponsored by a sponsor with Tier 4 Sponsor status, such as the University of Warwick
  • Are applying for entry clearance in their country of nationality, country of residence, or for leave to remain in the UK

Documents that you are NOT required to submit with your visa application if you meet the above criteria:

  • Evidence of finances,
  • Academic qualifications,
  • English language certificate (SELT),
  • Evidence of academic progression (successful completion of the previous course in the UK while holding a Tier 4 visa)

You will, however, be required to confirm on your application form that you meet the requirements set out in the Policy Guidance and that you hold the documentary evidence in the format required.

If you submitted any or all of the above documents, your visa application will be considered on the basis of the documents submitted and your visa application may be refused if any of the documents do not meet the requirement, for example, if it is evident that monies have not been held for 28 days.

If you submitted partial evidence, for example, you submitted financial documents but not academic qualification, the caseworker will use discretion when considering your application and will require full documentation if they consider necessary.

Documents that you are still required to submit with your visa application:

Mandatory Documents:

Other Documents:
  • TB certificate - If you have resided for 6 months or more in a country that attracts the TB Certification
  • ATAS certificate - If your course is ATAS registered
  • Financial Sponsor's unconditional consent letter - If fully sponsored by a government or an international scholarship agency over the last 12 months
  • Parental consent - if you are under the age of 18 on the date of application
  • English translation - If any of the above document is not written in English language

    Information for Dependants of a low risk national

    If you are the dependant of a Tier 4 Student who qualifies for the UKVI's differentiation arrangements because you are considered to be “low risk”, you will be required to provide fewer evidential documents when submitting your application.

    Where you are exempted from having to provide a document - or a group of documents - under the UKVI differentiation arrangements, this will be specifically stated in their guidance.

    The Home Office reserves the right to request these documents from you in all cases.

    You qualify for the UKVI's differentiation arrangements if:

    • The Tier 4 student is sponsored by a Tier 4 Sponsor
    • You are applying for leave at the same time as the Tier 4 student
    • You are applying for entry clearance in your country of residence or for leave to remain, in the UK
    • You and the Tier 4 student are both nationals of one of the countries listed at Appendix H of the Immigration Rules.

    The Home Office will sometimes ask a low risk national to send them the documentary evidence, random check or where you have complex immigration history/security concerns/criminal records.

    They will usually give you 7-10 working days to provide the documents.

    Failure to provide the evidence when requested by the Home Office will result in your application being refused.

    • If dependents are not applying at the same time as the student, then they will not qualify as 'low risk applicants'.
    • If two low risk applicants apply together, for example, a husband from Argentina and a wife from Brunei they must be of the same nationality to qualify as 'low risk applicants'.

    If you will be submitting your application via the Student Immigration & Compliance Application Checking Service, we will require you to provide all documentary evidence, including the ones that you are not required to submit, at the time you submit your application with us.