News article

Changes to settlement visa applications submitted in Pakistan

On 18 July 2016, we changed the process for submitting documents to support settlement visa applications made in Pakistan.

From that date, passports should be submitted at the Visa Application Centre, but all supporting documentation should be sent to UKVI in Sheffield (UK) by the sponsor/applicant.

The change has been introduced by UK Visas and Immigration as part of its commitment to continuously improve performance and maintain excellent customer service. It will benefit sponsors of customers applying from Pakistan to settle in the UK, as it will mean that they will be able to submit supporting documents within the UK, and have them returned to them in a much shorter timeframe.

Visas and decision notices will be returned to the customer via Gerry’s as normal along with the passport. Supporting documents will be returned to the sponsor in the UK.

Settlement applications will continue to be decided within UKVI’s customer service standard of 60 working days.A Settlement Priority Visa Service is also available to eligible customers which guarantees the application will be processed ahead of standard applications.

Where should I send supporting documents

The address for supporting documentation to be sent to is:

UK Visas and Immigration International
Po Box 5852
SHEFFIELD
S11 0FX

What to include in the supporting document bundle

  • Sponsors should ensure that the GWF reference number (generated when the application is completed online) and the location of the visa application centre where the application was lodged (Islamabad, Karachi, Lahore or Mirpur) are both marked clearly on the outside of the envelope and at the top right hand corner of the first (top) page of the enclosed documents
  • Please also include a photocopy of the applicant’s passport at the front of the bundle.
  • We recommend you provide A4 photocopies of all the documents you submit to assist us process your application quickly. Please do not staple any documents.
  • You should submit your documents along with a suitably sized pre-paid, self addressed envelope so they can be returned to the sponsor in the UK.

Failure to provide this information may result in a delay to the assessment of the application. Please note that your supporting documents may be returned to your sponsor before you receive a decision on the application. This is a normal part of the process and there is no need to contact us further.

What will happen to my passport

Your passport will remain at the British High Commission, Islamabad throughout the process.

What does my sponsor need to do?

All the supporting documentation that your sponsor wishes to submit to support your application should be sent direct to Sheffield.

What will happen to my documents?

Supporting documents will be returned directly from the Sheffield visa section to the sponsor in the UK.

My sponsor sent my documents to Islamabad, will I get refused?

There will be a small transition period after the change, so if your sponsor sends the documents to Islamabad during this time they will be forward on to Sheffield.

Will it take longer for my visa to be processed?

No, we will continue to processes visa applications in line with our customer service standard, which is 60 working days for a settlement application. A Settlement Priority Visa Service is also available to eligible customers which guarantees the application will be processed ahead of standard applications. Where we are unable to resolve an application within our service standards, we will continue to write to applicants to explain why.