As a Standard Visitor, you can stay in the UK for up to six months at a time. Accepted reasons for travel include tourism, seeing family or friends, layovers, business (in some cases), studying, and medical treatment. In this blog, we will discuss the maximum number of visits to the UK per year, and what happens if you overstay during your visit.
Standard Visitor Visa: Overview
The UK government does not restrict the number of times per year one can visit the UK on a Visit visa. However, immigration policies are subject to change, and it is crucial to consult official resources for the most accurate and up-to-date information. Whilst this visa grants access to the UK for a specific period, it is essential to be aware of the restrictions associated with the frequency of visits. You must not live in the UK for extended periods through frequent or successive visits or make the UK your main home.
You are also prohibited from receiving benefits, working for a UK company or being self-employed, living in the UK for long periods of time (even through several visits), or getting married. You can submit visit visa applications for 6 months or 2, 5, or 10 years, subject to meeting the requirements. Even if you have a long-term visit visa, it is important to note that your maximum stay is restricted to six months at a time.
In some exceptional circumstances, your stay in the UK can be extended for another six months. For instance, if you have only been given permission to stay in the UK for less than six months and are receiving medical care, working in academia, or you are a graduate re-taking the Professional and Linguistic Assessment Board (PLAB) test or doing a clinical attachment, you may be eligible to extend your permission for another six months, subject to meeting the requirements.
Can I get another UK visa if I overstay the permitted 180 days?
Overstaying in the UK refers to staying beyond the authorised period granted by your visa. If you do not leave the UK after 180 days, you may find yourself in a particularly delicate situation entailing severe consequences that may impact your ability to return to the UK in the future.
Repercussions of Overstaying: Overstaying in the UK for an extended period can lead to serious consequences, including:
- Bans and Penalties: You may face bans of varying lengths, restricting your return to the UK. Penalties can also be imposed, affecting future visa applications.
- Immigration Offense: Overstaying is considered an immigration offense, and you may be detained or deported, adding significant complications to future travel plans.
- Impact on Applications: Overstaying can adversely affect subsequent visa applications, making it challenging to obtain approval.
The chances of obtaining another UK visa after exceeding the 180-day period of stay granted by your visit visa are significantly diminished. The UK government takes immigration violations seriously, and overstaying for an extended period raises concerns about compliance with immigration laws.
It is recommended that you seek legal advice from immigration professionals or legal experts who can provide guidance based on your specific circumstances. It may be possible to explore legal avenues or present compelling cases for visa consideration.
How Gherson can assist
Gherson’s Immigration Team are highly experienced in advising on all UK visa matters, including issues associated with overstaying, and making compelling discretionary representations to the UK authorities. If you have any questions arising from this blog, please do not hesitate to contact us for advice, send us an e-mail, or, alternatively, follow us on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn to stay-up-to-date.
The information in this blog is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be comprehensive or to provide legal advice. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the information and law is current as of the date of publication it should be stressed that, due to the passage of time, this does not necessarily reflect the present legal position. Gherson accepts no responsibility for loss which may arise from accessing or reliance on information contained in this blog. For formal advice on the current law please do not hesitate to contact Gherson. Legal advice is only provided pursuant to a written agreement, identified as such, and signed by the client and by or on behalf of Gherson.