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Low risk nationalities

Last updated on 14 Oct 2020, 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 Student visa application.

Where an applicant qualifies under the differentiation arrangements, they are not usually required to provide some document (see next section). However, applicants should still hold the required documents as UKVI reserve the right to request evidence from the applicants. The list of differentiated nationals:

  1. (a) holds a valid passport which shows they are registered as a British National (Overseas), or which was issued by the competent authorities of Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR or Taiwan (which includes the number of the identification card issued by the competent authority in Taiwan); or
  2. (b) is a national of any of the following:
    · Australia
    · Austria
    · Bahrain
    · Barbados
    · Belgium
    · Botswana
    · Brazil
    · Brunei
    · Bulgaria
    · Cambodia
    · Canada
    · Chile
    · China
    · Croatia
    · Republic of Cyprus
    · Czech Republic
    · Denmark
    · The Dominican Republic
    · Estonia
    · Finland
    · France
    · Germany
    · Greece
    · Hungary
    · Iceland
    · Indonesia
    · Ireland
    · Italy
    · Japan
    · Kazakhstan
    · Kuwait
    · Latvia
    · Liechtenstein
    · Lithuania
    · Luxembourg
    · Malaysia
    · Malta
    · Mauritius
    · Mexico
    · Netherlands
    · New Zealand
    · Norway
    · Oman
    · Peru
    · Poland
    · Portugal
    · Qatar
    · Romania
    · Serbia
    · Singapore
    · Slovakia
    · Slovenia
    · South Korea
    · Spain
    · Sweden
    · Switzerland
    · Thailand
    · Tunisia
    · United Arab Emirates
    · United States of America

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

Applicants who meet the requirements of differentiation will not normally have to submit:

  • Documents used by the student sponsor to assess academic ability (degree/qualification)
  • When applying in the UK, evidence that they have completed their previous
  • Course (this will be noted on the Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies (CAS)
  • English language tests or documents used by the licensed Student sponsor to assess English language ability
  • Documentary evidence of their funds (Financial requirements for visa. Click here for more information)

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 qualifications, the caseworker will use discretion when considering your application and will require full documentation if they consider it 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 documents is not written in English language

Please refer to our Apply for Student visa page for full information.

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 (University of Warwick is a Tier 4 sponsor), and
  • You are applying for leave at the same time as the Tier 4 student, and
  • You are applying for entry clearance in your country of residence or for leave to remain, in the UK, and
  • You and the Tier 4 student are both nationals of one of the countries listed in the first section

The UKVI will sometimes ask a low risk national to send them the documentary evidence for a 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.

Please note:
  • If dependants 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 will quality if they are both of low risk nationality.

If you will be submitting your application via our 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.