REMINDER: Overseas Criminal Record Certificates

We remind clients that, effective 1st September 2015, any new application for entry clearance to the UK as a Tier 1 Entrepreneur or Tier 1 Investor must obtain an Overseas Criminal Record Certificate.

Applicants and all accompanying family members aged over 18 will need to provide an overseas criminal record certificate for any country (excluding the UK) they have resided in continuously for 12 months or more, in the 10 years before they file their visa application. Detailed guidance on how to apply for the overseas criminal record certificates has been published on the Home Office website.

Costs of the certificates are reasonable, however some countries charge up to £80 and the turnaround time varies depending on the country where the request is being lodged. Newland Chase will be able to assist with obtaining the certificate in a number of countries.

Note that certificates are only valid if issued within 6 months of the visa application. Any certificates that are not in English must be accompanied by a certified translation. The requirement does not affect those applying for leave to remain in the UK under these categories.

This will be a mandatory requirement for these visa cases, and if the certificate is not provided with the visa application, the case will most likely be refused.

What to do?

Anyone considering filing a Tier 1 Investor or Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa application after 1st September 2015 will now need to obtain the criminal record certificate. Please be reminded that the date of application is the date that the visa fee is paid. In most countries, the visa fee is payable online and so the date of online submission and payment would be the date of application to rely on.

The requirement applies to all applicants aged over 18, even if they have not resided in countries other than their home country. Therefore, all applications from 1st September for Tier 1 Investor and Tier 1 Entrepreneur must be submitted with the criminal record certificate.

It is worth noting that many other countries apply similar requirements to those applying for visas. We understand that the Home Office will be rolling out this requirement to all visa applicants in due course.

If you have any queries on these changes please do not hesitate to contact us.

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