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Undergraduate Student Visa and young dependents

Customer Question
I am applying for a...
I am applying for a study visa for myself to do an undergraduate course in the UK. I understand that I cannot bring my dependents which are a 6 yr old an a 2 year old infant. So I plan to apply or a visa or my 6 year old since I want her to attend a private American school in the UK while I complete my 3 year degree program. I had also planned the same for my 2 yr old and secured places for them in a really good American School for which I have the means to pay. I now understand that since the baby is not yet 4, she is not eligible to apply for a tier 4 student visa like myself and my older daughter, so what am I to do? I can't leave her in America until i grt back or she turns 4 and the UK laws won't let her go to pre-school in the UK essentially even though I will be paying fees. How can I bring my children with me to the UK while I undertake my studies. Financial support for them is not an issue for me and I think this new law simply discourages mature students from seeking to gain qualifications from the UK. About 29 years ago, I studied in the UK for an MBA. Today, as a mother of two young children, I want to study for a degree in Silversmithing, Goldsmithing and Jewellery. I have a passion for creativity and I was fortunate to have been able to secure a place on this program. I do not want to miss the opportunity, neither do I want to abandon my children to family here in the US when they can be with me during my course.
Submitted: 5 years ago.Category: UK Immigration Law
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Answered in 3 hours by:
5/5/2012
Solicitor: UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor replied 5 years ago
UKSolicitorJA
UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: UK Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 4,312
Experience: English Solicitor and UK Immigration Law Expert
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Hello,

I am happy to deal with your UK immigration law issues.
What passport do you hold?

Thank you
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Customer reply replied 5 years ago
US Passport - My two girls and I.
Solicitor: UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor replied 5 years ago
Thank you.

You are eligible to bring your children to the UK as your dependants as you are applying for an undergraduate course at a UK higher education institute under the Tier 4 (General) student category.

You may simply apply for a dependant visa for the 2 year old, see this policy guidance for further information: http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/sitecontent/applicationforms/pbs/pbsdependantspolicy1.pdf

Hope this helps.

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Customer reply replied 5 years ago

Copied from the UKBA site.....

From 4 July 2011, you cannot bring your dependants to the UK unless you are:

sponsored by a higher education institution on a course at NQF level 7 or above which lasts 12 months or more; or
a new government-sponsored student following a course which lasts longer than 6 months.

Unless I am mistaken, NQF 7 is the equivalent of a Masters or postgraduate degree. Undergrad is listed as NFQ 6.

This is why I asked the question in the first place because I'd searched the net already and concluded that the new laws discourage mature students from studying undergrad degrees in the UK, because they will not be allowed to bring their dependent with them. I am no closer to getting an answer unfortunately.
Solicitor: UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor replied 5 years ago
My apologies, I overlooked the fact that you will be doing an undergraduate level course in which case it does seem that your 2 year old baby will be locked out.

Is there any way your proposed education institution can structure the course so that it is deemed to be NQF7?
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Customer reply replied 5 years ago
Relist: Other.
What I needed was a person with experience in immigration matters. I had more knowledge and facts than the expert and had to correct him on the inaccurate answer he gave me. I am dissapointed in the quality of expertise.
Solicitor: INC, Solicitor-Advocate replied 5 years ago
INC
INC, Solicitor-Advocate
Category: UK Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 11,864
Experience: LL.B, Pg.Dip, LL.M, M.B.A (Pending), Solicitor-Advocate. UK Practising Certificate issued by SRA., DIFC Courts Registered (Dubai)
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Hi,

Thanks for your question.

If I have provided you with an answer, kindly click ACCEPT.

Hi,

I may be able to assist with this.

How is your course structured? By this, I mean how often will you have a break from studies?
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Customer reply replied 5 years ago
My course is structured over 3 years, with 2 semesters, per year,4 days a week on campus. During each semester, there are normal school breaks Christmas, Mid session, public holidays etc.

My two daughters have admission in the American school, but as I said, the toddler is only 2 so unlike her older sister who is 6, she does not meet the minimum age requirement for the Tier 4 student visa.

My dilemma is this what am I expected to do with my 2 year old? I'm assuming myself and older daughter will get study visas (PBS). We all have US passports.
Solicitor: INC, Solicitor-Advocate replied 5 years ago
Hi,

I have checked the rules and the guidance notes and to be completely honest with you I am at a loss as to what type of Visa your two year old can apply for.

The only thing I can suggest, and I am not sure how practical this is; and this is why I asked how your course was structured, is to have the 2 year old enter initially on a Visitors Visa which is valid for 6 months. As US Citizens, you do not need to apply for Visas, and are generally granted Leave to remain for a period of 6 months. Then at the end of the 6 months, you will have to leave the UK and then return after a short time away, when you return to the UK, she will have to obtain another visitors visa for 6 months.

The other thing I can think of is that you apply for a multi-entry visitors visa for 2 - 5 years. This would allow the 2 year old 6 months at a time in the UK after which she would have to leave and can then return for another 6 months.

The rules do not specify what duration of time a person on a multi-entry visa has to be outside of the UK although the 'Guidance Notes' do suggest a period of 3 months. However, 'Guidance Notes' are not law, following the decision in the case of Pankina , and therefore one could always argue that even a short break away is sufficient.

Once the child attains the age of 4, you will then be able to apply for a Child Student Visa.

I understand that this may not be the most practical solution, but it is some sort of solution to your problem.

I hope this helps. If so, kindly click ACCEPT.

If you wish to discuss, please feel free to ask further questions.

Kind regards,
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Customer reply replied 5 years ago
I have searched the UKBA site and I cannot find anything that would allow my two year old to come to the UK, unless under the visa waiver program which allows her 90 days at a time or to go the Visitor visa route which would allow her 6 months at a time. In the later, she would have to apply as a child visitor in which case she has to have an adult included in her visa, which is me, the prospective student who plans to study in the UK for 3 years. I can show financial support for her etc, but with a visitor's visa, can she attend what really amounts to nursery school. I could keep her at home, but that's so wrong because for our family, school starts at 2+ 6months. I cannot deprive her of early education. If we can attend school on a 6 month multiple visa, i would seriously go the six month multiple visa route because ordinarily we travel overseas every 2-3 months anyway for short breaks away from the US. That way, we all go in and out on the same kind of visas. My only concern with that is this - are the schools prohibited from allowing us to enroll and attend because we don't have student visas.? If we can, then I have no problem, because it would be for only one yr, after which my husband plans to apply for an investor visa which would include us all.
Solicitor: INC, Solicitor-Advocate replied 5 years ago
Hi,

I have checked the rules again and discussed the matter with a couple of colleagues who have agreed that the rules do not specifically state that you cannot place the younger child in a nursery.

The issue I see is whether the UKBA deem nursery care to be studying, in my opinion, I would argue that it does not as it is not full-time education but a care service which you will have to rely upon whilst you are studying yourself.

This would mean, however, that you would have to leave the UK every 6 months before returning for another 6 months.

I hope this helps. If so, kindly click ACCEPT.

If you wish to discuss, please feel free to ask further questions.

Kind regards,
INC
INC, Solicitor-Advocate
Category: UK Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 11,864
Experience: LL.B, Pg.Dip, LL.M, M.B.A (Pending), Solicitor-Advocate. UK Practising Certificate issued by SRA., DIFC Courts Registered (Dubai)
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INC and 87 other UK Immigration Law Specialists are ready to help you
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Customer reply replied 5 years ago
Thank you very much, you've been very helpful. Much appreciated.
Solicitor: INC, Solicitor-Advocate replied 5 years ago
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