Bringing Your Family to the UK on Student Visa

Family members, also referred to as dependents, of a student may be eligible to apply to come to the UK and join or remain with them. However, in order for you to be able to bring your family to join you in the UK, you must be one of the following:

  • A full-time student in a postgraduate programme (RQF level 7 or above);
  • A new government-sponsored student enrolled in a course lasting more than six months and up to nine months;
  • Student of the Doctorate Extension Scheme.

Who is considered a family? Family members are:

  • Your husband, civil partner, or wife;
  • Your partner who is single;
  • Your child under 18 years old – including if they were born in the UK during your stay.

When they apply, they must provide proof of their relationship, such as:

  • A marriage certificate or civil partnership for your partner;
  • A copy of your child’s birth certificate;
  • If any of your children are born while you are in the UK, you must present the child’s UK birth certificate.

If your child is 16 or 17 years old when you submit your application, you must show that they are not leading an independent life, such as being married or participating in a civil partnership. You must also show:

  • If they do not live with you, you must state where they live, and the reason why that child is not living with you;
  • Any rent or upkeep they pay;
  • If they do not live with you, you must provide evidence that you provide for their financial needs.

If your child lives with you, you will need to provide any 2 of the listed documents below confirming their address:

  • A bank statement;
  • Credit card bills;
  • Driving licence;
  • NHS registration document;
  • An official letter from their university or college.

What Money will they Require to Support Themselve?
As an international student looking to bring your family over, you must be able to desmonstrate that your dependents are financially capable of supporting themselves in the UK.

You must also have enough money to support your family, plus each dependent must have a certain amount of money available to them. Their financial needs are determined by:

  • The duration of your course;
  • The location of the university in the UK where your course is;
  • And whether or not the course is finished or ongoing.

The amount of money your family will need to support themselves per person:

  • £845 a month (for up to 9 months) for courses in London;
  • £680 a month (for up to 9 months) for courses outside London.

If you are applying at the same time as your partner or child, you must show that you have the financial means to support yourself, pay for your course, and provide for each dependent.  If your partner or child is applying at a different time to you, they only need to show they can support themselves financially.

You must provide evidence that the money is available and has been in your account or the account of a dependent for at least 28 days prior to applying. If the funds are coming from a student loan or an official sponsor, it does not have to be made available 28 days in advance, but you must confirm when they will be.

When You Are Not Required To Provide Evidence That Your 
Family Can Support Themselves
If your partner or child has been in the UK for at least a year with a valid visa, they do not need to show that they have this money.

If you are applying simultaneously and your partner or child is from one of the nations with the “Differential Evidence Requirement,” they do not have to show they can support themselves financially. However, before they receive a response to their application, they might be required to present this proof. After they’ve submitted their application, UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) will get in touch with them if they need to provide it.

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If your dependant(s) are applying outside the UK
All applications must be submitted online, with the exception of those from North Korea. Each member of the family will submit their own application.  They must:

Download the application form and instructions; if they require assistance filling out the form, they can read the instructions because it will also tell you where you need to submit the completed form.

They will need their application number which is given when they apply.  This number is referred to as the Global Web Form (GWF) or a Unique Application Number (UAN) which you will find in emails and letters that you got from the Home Office about your application.

As part of their application, they will need to have their fingerprints and photograph taken for their Biometric Residence Permit {BEP) at a visa application centre.  This biometric permit should be collected within 10 days of when they said they will arrive in the UK.

If your dependent(s) are applying for an extension or switch in the UK
When applying to extend or switch their own visa, applicants should also submit an application for the visas of any dependents. Dependents may apply to extend or switch their visas at a later time if the applicant cannot do so simultaneously; however, this must be done before your current visa expires.

Your dependants cannot apply to switch in the UK if they have one of the following visas:

  • A visit visa
  • Short-term student visa
  • Parent of a Child Student visa
  • Seasonal worker visa
  • Domestic worker in a private household visa. 

Each person will need to pay:

They may need to pay £19.20 to have their biometric information (fingerprints and a photo) taken.

How to apply
Your child and partner must submit separate online applications. They must submit an application as either your child or partner. They will require the student’s application number, called the Global Web Form (GWF) or a Unique Application Number (UAN),  A Global Web Form (GWF) or Unique Application Number is what this number is known as  They will find it in emails and letters the Home Office sends them regarding their application.

As part of their application, they will be required to schedule an appointment at a UK Visa and Citizenship Application Services (UKVCAS) service location in order to submit their biometric information (fingerprints and a photo).  

Additionally, they must submit their supporting documentation, which can be scanned at their UKVCAS appointment or can be uploaded to the online service.  If they want a faster decision on their application, they should ask during the application and if they qualify, they can pay additional fees to fast-track their decision.

Until they receive a decision, they are not allowed to leave the UK, Ireland, the Channel Islands, or the Isle of Man. If they do, their application will be withdrawn.

What are the benefits of studying in the UK? 

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