30th October 2018

New UK Visa and Citizenship Application Service

On the 23rd October 2018, the Home Office released further information the new streamlined Visa and Citizenship Application Service (UK VACS) which has been outsourced to Sopra Steria. More details are yet to come…

Summary of the new system

  • Set to replace the existing postal applications and in-person submissions.
  • Reliance on technology, including online application forms, digital document submission and biometrics appointments.
  • During the appointment, passports will automatically be checked, their biometric details captured, and copies of the applicant’s supporting documents can be uploaded digitally. The applicant will usually be able to retain their original passport whilst the application is processing.
  • Appointments at the following cities will be free: Manchester, Birmingham, Glasgow, Cardiff, Belfast and Croydon. 50 local ‘user-pay’ service centres will be in libraries and a new premium service centre will be available in central London.
  • The new centres are set to start accepting application from 5th November. During the November implementation period the existing system will remain operational.
  • The Home Office have pledged that the system will be more flexible and provide additional premium “on-demand” services (previously Super Premium) and mobile application services, for example at university campuses, employers’ offices or individual customers’ homes.
  • Seven dedicated Service and Support Centres (SSCs) will offer free appointments for those considered vulnerable or need additional assistance, from January 2019.

Contact your Santa Fe representative or the UK Immigration team at UKImmigration@santaferelo.com for further information.

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