Decisions on visa applications are usually delayed. Many people who want UK visas and those who want to become British citizens (naturalise) encounter delays in getting a decision from the Home Office. Due to the uncertainty surrounding the application’s approval, such delays could happen for many reasons and are likely to be stressful for everyone involved. Additionally, it could cause longer-than-expected family separations and conflict with personal and professional plans.
The UK visa and Immigration huge workload at the time and staff shortages could be to blame, OR it could be due to outside circumstances like the war in Ukraine and the COVID-19 epidemic. However, delays are frequently brought on by errors in the field applications. The Home Office frequently rejects applications that are not complete and take longer to process. For example, when applicants submit the wrong document(s) or information or fail to state in their visa application earlier immigration status or criminal history.
What are the times for processing UK visas from inside the UK & outside the UK?
The time it takes the Home Office to process a visa depends on several factors, including the kind of application and whether it is submitted from within the UK or from abroad (for example, entry clearance versus permission to remain). Therefore, you should consult UK Visa and Immigration’s most recent guidance on processing timelines to determine if your application is still within the specified standard timeframe. There are various processing times for applications submitted inside the UK vs outside the UK.
On average, most out-of-country entrance clearance applications take around 3 weeks to process, starting when the Home Office gets your biometrics and supporting documentation. Some visa types, such as spouse/family visas, are more complicated and require longer processing times of up to 12 weeks. The Home Office estimates it usually takes 3 weeks to process some visa categories, like the innovator visa. In reality, though, Home Office often needs several months or even more to process some Innovator applications.
Common Reasons For Delay in UK Visa Processing Time
There are several reasons why your UK visa application can be delayed, as we just discussed in the first sentence of this article. Sometimes, the Home Office may be at fault. However, based on our experience, the candidate and the merit of their application are usually the cause of the issue. Usually, the application had an error or necessary supporting documentation was missing.
The applicant often submitted their application, and the Home Office took more supporting documentation. Such requests increase the time it takes to process a visa. Additionally, candidates frequently skip to check their emails and do not reply to messages from the Home Office. Additionally, they sometimes send the requested documents to the incorrect email address. Those things may cause a visa application to be rejected or, at the very least, delayed.
It is essential to keep an eye on the email account you used to submit your application to the Home Office. In a few cases, people have changed their phone numbers without telling the Home Office of the change. They consequently missed important Home Office communications.
What to do if your application for a UK visa is delayed
Complicated Home Office processes are common, and delayed visa applications are no exception. When a decision about your application for a visa or British citizenship is delayed, there are actions you can take. You should start by looking for any messages from the Home Office. Making sure that nothing has been missed by reviewing all of the Home Office’s emails is never a bad idea.
Next, determine if your application is beyond the Home Office processing time guidance. For information about the application or updates, contact the Home Office.
When contacting the Home Office, you should have your case reference number. You may find Home Office’s contact information here. You can reach them by phone, email, or both.
There could be a little cost involved. Make contact with your local MP so they may raise the issue with the Home Office. Finally, if all of the above have failed and the Home Office decision has still not been made, you may choose to file a formal complaint with the UK Visas and Immigration.
Delays in UK visa processing times are often a result of a combination of factors, ranging from administrative challenges to security concerns. By hiring skilled immigration advisors like My Legal Services, applicants can significantly enhance their chances of a smoother visa application process. Their specialised knowledge, particular document review, and proactive approach can help you navigate the complexities of the process, ultimately leading to a more efficient and successful outcome. Don’t let processing delays deter you—take advantage of immigration advice to make your UK visa journey as seamless as possible.