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Bringing Family to the UK

Please note the information below is for guidance purposes only. Students are advised to consult the Gov.UK website and Tier 4 policy guidance prior to making any application.

Who can be a Tier 4  dependant? 

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

  • Husband or wife
  • Civil Partner (same sex relationship only)
  • Unmarried or same sex partner (you must evidence that you have been living in a relationship 'akin' to a marriage for two years)
  • Children under the age of 18 (upon arrival in the UK)
IMPORTANT: When bringing Tier 4 dependent children BOTH living parents must normally be coming to the UK or extending their leave in this capacity. If only one parent is applying to come to the UK, please speak to an International Student Adviser at the college because there are very limited exceptions to this requirement.

Who can bring dependants?

You can bring your dependant to the UK if:

  • you are studying a postgraduate level course, lasting 9 months or more, or
  • you are fully sponsored by your government for a programme of study lasting more than six months
  • Applying for the Doctorate Extension Scheme.

Where can a Tier 4 dependant apply? 

Dependants can apply online from within* and outside the UK.
Outside the UK

Each dependant must complete a separate application online at the UK Government website.

    Within the UK

    Each dependant MUST apply BEFORE their current visa expires.

    • If you are applying at the same time as your dependant(s) you will need to use this form.
    • If your dependant partner is applying later than you use this form.
    • If your dependant child, for example a new baby born in the UK is applying later than you use this form.

    As part of the application process, each dependant will need to provide evidence that they can be financially supported in the UK. Each dependant of a student studying in inner London is required to show £845 per month for living costs, for nine months. This money must have been held in a bank account in either the Tier 4 applicants or the dependant's name for a period of 28 consecutive days prior to applying. This money is in addition to the money that the main Tier 4 applicant must show.

    If the Tier 4 applicant has a scholarship that is covering the cost of their family being in the UK, the scholarship letter must confirm this and state how much money is allocated to each dependant.

    Children born in the UK

    If you are a Tier 4 student and you are pregnant, it is very important that you talk to one of our Student Advisers as soon as possible. Your baby does not have automatic rights to British citizenship. To be classed as a British national he or she must have a parent with British citizenship or settled status in the UK.  Your baby won’t need a visa while he or she remains in the UK.  However, once they’ve left the UK they will need a visa to re-enter.

    If you are applying inside the UK, the form you need to use will depend on whether you are applying as the same time as your baby or not. The application form will ask if you want to add a dependant child (your baby) to the application: 

    Healthcare for children born in the UK

    We advise that students who have babies born in the UK seek to make an immigration application for them as soon as possible after their birth to avoid potential liability for NHS charges in any period between three months after they are born (when free treatment is automatically allowed)

    Can my dependants work in the UK?

    Yes – details of the type of work that they can do can be found on the UKCISA website.

    Further information

    For further information on applying to bring your family to the UK, please visit the UKCISA website.