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Child Dependent visa: Basic requirements caring for children under 18 yrs. old living in the UK

Updated: Jul 27

General Application Guidance: Basics You Need to Know

If you read this guide in full to the end you will gain a better understanding of the application requirements relating to Child dependent visa applications.

If you believe your application requirements are more complex and need help now.

family enjoying social time together
bringing parents & their children together

Author Bio

Marc Gibson a Registered Immigration adviser with OISC (Office Immigration Services Commissioner). Marc founded MYG Ltd in 2005 as a sole practitioner.

Marc specialises in Family Immigration Advice and Citizenship Services, his aim is to help individuals, families and businesses navigate the complex UK Immigration rules and procedures. His mission is to ensure those who meet the visa application requirements can be reunited with their families, start their own businesses, or study in the UK.

If you are applying to come or remain in the UK to care for a child living here. You will need to apply for a parent carers visa commonly referred to by UKVI as a Child Parent visa. If you are an overseas national and the parent of a child living in the UK you can apply to come to the UK via "entry clearance" or "switch" if you are already here.

You cant switch into this category if:

When looking for help to apply selecting the right legal representative is a key part of any visa application process and it’s an important one to get right when considering using an immigration adviser or Solicitor to help submit your application for you.

To apply on your behalf for a Child dependent visa you first need to meet the following core application requirements.

Applying for a Child Dependent Visa for a Child in the UK:

What you need to demonstrate:

The financial & Language requirements:

How long can you stay:

Natural progression to permanent residence:


Applying for a Child Dependent Visa Who's living in the UK:

You can apply to live in the UK to care for your child if.

  • They are under 18 years old on the date you apply (or)

  • They were under 18 years old when you first acquired leave to enter or remain

  • They have not become married or entered into a civil partnership, have children of their own, left home, or living an independent life

One of the following must apply when your child is living in the UK

  • Your child is a Irish or British national

  • Your child is an overseas national who has settled in the UK holding indefinite leave to remain, Settled Status or Permanent residence

  • Your child is a EU national , Swiss, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein national with pre-settled status and were living in the UK before 1 January 2021

If you apply from within the UK

  • Your child must have lived in the UK for 7 years continuously and it would be unreasonable for them to be expected to leave with you and live outside the UK

  • You must demonstrate you have sole or shared parental responsibility for your child, when under shared responsibility your child's other parent can not be your partner or spouse.

  • When shared responsibility applies the child's other parent must be an Irish, British Citizen or someone with settled status in the UK.

  • When joint custody applies and your child lives with their other parent you must demonstrate you have instigated right of access to your child in person under agreed terms with their other parent, carer or by court order.

For more information about all aspects of Dependent visa applications visit our designated website page for dependent visa applicants.


What you need to demonstrate:

You need to show you are taking an active role in your child's upbringing and you intend to continue doing so after you have applied. This requires confirmation in writing by 3rd party sources such as their school, GP, dentist or health worker or your child's other parent confirming you take an active role in their upbringing.


The financial & Language requirements:

You can financially support yourself, your child & any other dependents without accessing public funds. If you have other dependents you will need to demonstrate your accommodation is adequate to accommodate everyone staying within your household

If English isn't your native language you will need to demonstrate you have knowledge of English by passing an SELT English Test or demonstrate you can claim an exemption.


How long can you stay:

When applying to come to the UK for the first time you will receive an entry clearance vignette visa in your passport normally allowing travel into the UK for 28 days. You normally receive a BRP card 10 days after entry at your disclosed UK home address confirmed on your visa application form. Family visas are normally issued for 33 months when applying from outside the UK. If you extend or switch into this visa category your visa is extended for 30 months.


Natural progression to Permanent Residence:

Before your "Entry clearance" or "Further Leave to Remain" expires you will need to apply for an extension visa if successful you will receive a further 30 months.

The earliest amount of time you need to have remained in the UK to acquire Indefinite leave to remain is 60 months, you can apply for Indefinite leave to remain otherwise know as settlement or permanent residence provided you can demonstrate you have meet ILR eligibility requirements.

Once you receive your PR and depending on your personal circumstances you may be eligible to apply for Naturalisation (British Citizenship) immediately after receiving your Permanent Residence BRC ID card.

Lets get your application started together

Disclaimer: The information provided above is for general purposes only relating to Immigration visa application procedures and these rules change regularly. I highly recommended you contact me directly for more in-depth advice and assistance. All enquiries receive a free initial application assessment to clarify how you meet the general application requirements of the above application route.

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