South Africans face UK visa delays

South Africans should prepare for delays in processing their settlement visas for the United Kingdom. According to Move Up, a UK specific immigration consultancy, South Africans applying to live and work in the UK are already experiencing considerable delays with their visa applications.

The UK ranks among the top locations South Africans immigrate to each year. According to Business Tech, 45,000 South Africans were granted work visas in 2018.

South Africans UK visas delayed

The delay in visa approval has been been attributed to the change in administration of the UK Visas and Immigration Service (UKVI), which occurred earlier this year. This means that settlement visas are no longer processed locally but are rather sent to the UK head office in Sheffield.

Read more: 6 ways Africans are unfairly denied UK visas

There have also been inconsistencies with some English testing centres in South Africa which don’t supply UKVI reference numbers as others do overseas. Move Up identifies this as being another reason why some South Africans have been denied visas.

‘There are global inconsistencies that applicants cannot be held liable for. However, this dynamic seems to be causing inconsistencies in their decision-making process,’ said Ryan Rennison, Move Up’s Managing Director, in a statement. ‘From what I can tell, the Sheffield team has adopted a strict interpretation of settlement visa rules, whereas the Pretoria team was far more lenient. However, from the consistently delayed visa processing times, it seems that Sheffield’s newly implemented team of decision-makers are taking strain.’

Move Up has told their clients to physically go into the visa centre to check on their application status rather than wait for the notification online while this issue persists.

Image source: Unsplash

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