When can I come to the UK?

If your student visa is for a course of six months or more (undergraduate or postgraduate courses), or for a pre-sessional English language course of less than six months, your visa will start one month before the course.

However, please note that it will not be possible for you to open a UK bank account until you are enrolled at the University so make sure you have enough money with you until enrolment. Make sure you arrive on time.

The start date of the course will be stated in the CAS email you receive from BCoT. You must make sure you are enrolled before the course start date or you may have to leave the UK and return home.

Can I bring my family to the UK with me?

Tier 4 Dependants

On 4 July 2011, the rules for Tier 4 dependants changed.

The UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA) have created a useful guide you can use to check if you are able to bring dependants with you to the UK:

UKCISA guide for Tier 4 family dependants

A few things to consider before bringing your family to the UK:

  • You should think carefully before deciding to bring your spouse and children with you to the UK. There are financial and emotional factors to consider.
  • It can be extremely difficult to look after family members while studying, particularly if they do not speak English.
  • Family accommodation can be difficult to find and there is no accommodation in the University's halls of residence for families.
  • Please also bear in mind that family accommodation is more expensive than that for a single person.
  • If you do decide to bring your family, we advise that you travel to the UK alone first to organise your accommodation. You may then arrange for your family to join you when you have settled in. You will be required by the immigration authorities to provide financial evidence to demonstrate that you have sufficient funds to support yourself and your family while in the UK.

I'm already studying in the UK, can my dependants stay with me?

If you have already been studying in the UK on a programme for longer than six months, your dependants will be able to continue to stay with you in the UK as long as you meet the following requirements:

  • you have a Tier 4 (General) Student visa or Pre-Tier 4 Student Visa
  • your current visa is for a programme of study longer than six months
  • your visa has not yet expired or it expired less than three months ago
  • you and your family apply for an extension of leave together
  • you are applying for a programme of study longer than six months
  • each family member has or most recently had leave as a dependant of a Tier 4 student
  • Who is classed as a dependant?

Under the Tier 4 immigration rules your 'dependants' are:

  • husband or wife
  • civil partner
  • unmarried or same sex partner (you must have lived together for at least two years)
  • children aged under 18 (on the date you are going to arrive in the UK).

How do my family apply outside of the UK?

If you are applying for a Tier 4 visa, your dependants apply as a 'Points Based System Dependant'. Each dependant completes a separate application form (VAF10), proving supporting documents and pays a separate fee.

For more information visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/application-for-uk-visa-for-pbs-dependant-form-vaf10

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