With the imminent hike in the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) set for 16 January 2024, applicants looking to secure a UK visa are advised to brace for significant changes. At Axis Solicitors, we are at the forefront to ensure you stay informed and prepared.
Understanding the IHS Fee Escalation
The current IHS fee for individuals above 18 is £624 annually and will increase to £1035. For children under 18, students, their dependents, and Youth Mobility applicants, the charge will jump from £470 to £776 yearly. Noteworthy, there remains no IHS for Health and Care Workers or applicants under the Ukraine Scheme.
|Category||2023 Yearly IHS (GBP)||New (2024) Yearly IHS (GBP)|
|Student, Student dependant, Youth Mobility scheme & applications made by children under 18||470||776|
|Other relevant immigration categories||624||1035|
The Financial Implications for Families
To illustrate the changes, let us consider a family of 5, with two adults and three children. With the main applicant applying for leave to enter for three years as a sponsored Skilled Worker and family members as dependents, the total cost of the Immigration Health Surcharge would become:
- £3744 for the two adults ( £624 x 3 x 2 = £3744)
- £4230 for the three children (£776 x 3 x 3= £4230)
Presently, the price for such a family aggregates to £7974.
From 16 January 2024 onwards, the immigration health surcharge for a family of 5 with two adults and three children will be:
- £6210 for the two adults (£1035 x 3 x 2)
- £6984 for the three children (£776 x 3 x 2)
Post-increase, the total expense escalates to £13,194, an eye-opening difference that could influence decision-making and budgeting for prospective skilled migrants.
Sponsors typically bear the brunt of these fees. Yet, there’s no universal rule to this effect, and often, visa applicants must allocate substantial funds towards the IHS, with their financial capability being a crucial factor.
Navigating the Changes
Who is obligated to pay the IHS? The simple answer: most individuals aiming to work, study, or join family in the UK for more than half a year, along with those seeking visa extensions or status variations.
Nevertheless, the IHS does not correlate with the actual NHS usage, health conditions, or the presence of private medical insurance. Instead, it is a static charge tied to visa length, impacting all alike.
How Axis Solicitors Limited Can Assist
As the immigration landscape to the UK evolves, the importance of expert legal guidance has never been more critical. Whether you plan to work, study, or join your family in the UK, our seasoned team is well-versed in immigration law. Therefore, we can help you navigate the complexities of any visa application, ensuring that you understand the financial requirements of your move to the UK, including the impending increase in the Immigration Health Surcharge.
A few of the areas we can assist you with are:
- Assessing your visa category and the corresponding IHS fees,
- Advising on the timing of your application to avoid the increased fees.
- Exploring any exemptions you may be entitled to.
- Review your visa application to ensure compliance with the latest regulations.
Contact Us Today
Keep the IHS increase from becoming an obstacle to your UK immigration plans. Contact Axis Solicitors Limited today to discuss how we can support you. Our team can assist you remotely or through one of our five offices across the UK with a free initial consultation. Axis Solicitors Limited has consistently ranked as the number one immigration law firm in the UK on Review Solicitors last year. We currently have offices in the following UK cities: Manchester, London, Birmingham, Chester and Newcastle.
Phone: 0800 048 7573
Let us guide you with clarity and certainty.