eVisa: Apply for Online UK Immigration Status

by | May 28, 2024 | Indefinite Leave to Remain, UK Immigration, Work Visa

The UK government is transitioning from physical immigration documents to digital records known as eVisas. An eVisa is an online record of your immigration status and the conditions under which you are allowed to enter or stay in the UK. This shift aims to make it easier, faster, and more secure to prove your immigration status. In this post, we discuss key aspects relating to the new eVisa system.

The Home Office has published the following video on what an eVisa is:

Why is the UK Switching to eVisas?

Starting 01 January 2020, the UK began issuing Biometric Residence Permits (BRPs) with an expiry date of 31 December 2024. This was initially due to European Union requirements for next-generation encryption technology.

Despite the EU lifting these requirements in January 2021, the UK Home Office continued to plan for digitalisation, resulting in all BRPs being valid only until the end of 2024. This aligns with the broader plan to replace physical documents with eVisas by 31 December 2024.

What Documents are Being Replaced?

The following physical documents will be replaced by eVisas:

  • Biometric Residence Permits (BRPs)
  • Biometric Residence Cards (BRCs)
  • Passport endorsements such as indefinite leave to enter (ILE) stamps
  • Vignette stickers in passports (e.g., entry clearance or visa stickers)

Since 2018, many people have received an eVisa, particularly through the EU Settlement Scheme.

How to Get an eVisa

If you have a BRP, the Home Office will contact you with instructions on creating a UKVI account before your BRP expires on 31 December 2024.

If you haven’t been contacted yet, you will be able to create your account later in 2024. Keep an eye out for updates from the Home Office.

Who Needs a UKVI Account?

You need a UKVI account to access your eVisa and share information about your immigration status. This account is essential for proving your right to work, rent, or access public services in the UK.

Creating a UKVI Account

To access your eVisa, you must create a UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) account. This account will allow you to:

  • View and prove your immigration status
  • Check your rights in the UK (e.g., right to work, rent, or claim benefits)
  • Update personal details, such as your contact information

If you have not yet been contacted about creating an account, you’ll be able to create your account and access your eVisa later in 2024. You may sign up for updates to keep up to date on when you’ll be able to access your eVisa.  

The Home Office has published the following video on how to create an account and access your eVisa:

Benefits of an eVisa

Switching to an eVisa has several advantages:

  • Security: Unlike physical documents, eVisas cannot be lost, stolen, or tampered with.
  • Convenience: You don’t need to wait for or collect a physical document after your application is decided. However, you might still need to provide biometric information in person.
  • Ease of Use: It’s quicker and easier to prove your status at the UK border and share your status with employers or landlords.

Proving Your Immigration Status Online

Using the View and Prove service, you can get a share code to prove your status to others, update your details, and check your rights in the UK. This service requires you to have a UKVI account. You would have a UKVI account if you applied to the EU Settlement Scheme or used the UK Immigration: ID Check app to prove your identity when you applied for a visa. 

To view or prove your immigration status, you will need details of your identity document (such as your passport or BRP card), your date of birth and access to the mobile number or email address you used to sign in to your UKVI account. 

Specific Scenarios and Actions Required

If You Have a BRP Expiring on 31 December 2024:

  • Wait for instructions from the Home Office on creating a UKVI account.
  • Ensure you create your account before your BRP expires.
  • Use the “View and Prove” service to access your eVisa.

If You Have a Biometric Residence Card (BRC) Under the EU Settlement Scheme:

  • No action is required. You already have an eVisa.
  • Continue carrying your BRC when traveling internationally.

If You Have a Passport Endorsement (Wet Ink Stamp or Vignette Sticker):

  • Apply for a No Time Limit (NTL) application to get a BRP.
  • Once you have a BRP, create a UKVI account to access your eVisa.

Travelling to the UK with an eVisa

Until the end of 2024, you must continue to carry your physical immigration documents when travelling. Starting in 2025, your eVisa will suffice for travel, but ensure your UKVI account is updated with your current passport details.

What to Do If You Encounter Problems

If you need help sharing your status, updating your details, or correcting an error with your eVisa, contact the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) contact centre.

Contact Details:

  • Telephone: +44 (0)300 790 6268 (select option 3)
  • Telephone: +44 (0)203 875 4669 (if you cannot dial 0300 numbers)
  • Hours: Monday to Friday, 8am to 8.30pm; Saturday and Sunday, 9.30am to 4.30pm

Key Takeaways

  • By the end of 2024, physical immigration documents in the UK will be replaced by eVisas.
  • You need to create a UKVI account to access and manage your eVisa.
  • The transition to eVisas enhances security and convenience for both immigrants and the UK authorities.
  • Keep your UKVI account updated and ensure you follow Home Office instructions to avoid any issues with your immigration status.

For more information, check out the Home Office’s eVisa guidance and sign up for updates to stay informed about the transition to eVisas.

How we can help 

For assistance with applying or extending your UK immigration status, contact our friendly professional team today on +44 208 757 5751 or use our contact form

Frequently asked questions

Why is the UK switching to eVisas?

The UK is transitioning to eVisas to enhance security, convenience, and efficiency. This aligns with the plan to replace all physical immigration documents with eVisas by 31 December 2024.

What documents are being replaced by eVisas?

eVisas will replace Biometric Residence Permits, Biometric Residence Cards, Passport endorsements (e.g., indefinite leave to enter stamps) and Vignette stickers in passports.

What Our Clients Say

Request a FREE assessment from our experts

Receive your assessment via:

Privacy Policy

Skilled Worker Visa 2024

Skilled Worker Visa Requirements 2024

The Skilled Worker Visa offers a route for international professionals seeking employment in the UK. Replacing the Tier 2 visa, it aims to attract...