Between March 2019 and March 2020, 715,000 people moved to the United Kingdom, and the numbers are expected to rise over the coming years. For many people, the thought of taking a holiday to the UK -–or migrating there for good – is exciting. But there are some essential things to know before you start the relocation process.
Forgetting to do the necessary research can cost you more or make your move very challenging. So, what are some of the key things you need to be aware of? Here are a few.
Apply for your visa
Visa application is one of the main requirements in legal and migratory settings. If you’re a non-EEA member or citizen, you can’t gain legal entry into the UK without a visa permit. The visa application process, coupled with their respective fees and types, can be daunting for a first timer. Particularly so, the post-Brexit complexities make this process even more stringent.
For starters, the visa type you receive largely depends on the purpose of your move. If you’re migrating to the UK to seek employment, that’ll be entirely different from going for educational purposes.
Check online ahead of time to gain a better understanding on how the visa process works for your specific situation. For example, if you’re moving to the UK to join your spouse who’s a British citizen, be aware that your visa will depend on a series of verification tests to ascertain your marriage’s authenticity.
Due to the increasing reports of marriages for convenience, the immigration process seeks to cut back on these while allowing genuine spouses to join their partners. For more information on this, you can simply do a Google search for ‘spouse visa uk’ and read advice only from reputable websites.
Find an immigration lawyer
Believe it or not, you’ll find an immigration lawyer’s services worth your time. However, it’s advisable to seek legal expertise from immigration solicitors already based in the UK for best results. This will come in handy because their timely counsel can save you from wasting resources on your immigration process.
It’s always better to have an experienced immigration lawyer assess your eligibility to apply for permanent residency, rather than going through the mill only to be rejected in the long run.
It’s also worthy of note that due to Brexit, you may not enjoy the hitherto right to free movement to the UK if you’re moving from the EU. In due course, if you plan on staying beyond a required period, you’ll have to apply for a UK immigration status as indicated by the government. Fortunately, with an immigration lawyer, you have access to first-hand information on this stage’s requirements.
Are you moving to the UK with any pets? According to UK laws, you’ll need to ensure that your pet observes a quarantine period of six months. There is also a pet passport system when bringing your pet from various countries.
Moreover, vaccination shots must be up to date, coupled with blood testing to quell any suspicion of an active or dormant infection.
Keep in mind, too, that not all airlines permit pet transport, so you should search carefully.
Lastly, it helps to know the differences between England, Great Britain, and the UK. Did you know that the UK is an abbreviation of the United Kingdom of Great Britain? There are four UK countries, England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.