For a successful UK Visitor Visa Application, an applicant needs to have sufficient funds for UK visa to support the expenses associated with the trip, without recourse to public funds in the UK. At times, a family member or friend may also undertake to sponsor a trip to the UK so as to cover the cost of travel, living and accommodation in the UK even for such applicants, especially family members like parents, who either have limited income or no bank account.
Accordingly, this post explains the details of UK visitor visa maintenance funds, UK visitor visa accommodation proof and UK visitor visa sponsor documents in terms of Paragraphs V 4.2 (Sufficient Funds), V 4.3 (Funds, maintenance and accommodation provided by a third party) and V 4.23 (a) (Conditions for leave to enter or an extension of stay as a visitor).
UK Visit Visa Maintenance Funds
In terms of Paragraph V 4.2(e) Appendix V of the Immigration Rules, a visitor needs to have sufficient funds for manifesting his/her genuine intentions to visit. Therefore, an applicant must have a ready access to sufficient funds and resources to maintain and accommodate himself/herself and dependants adequately during the visit to the UK or for the duration of an extension of stay.
Immigration Rules Appendix V
Genuine intention to visit
V 4.2 The applicant must satisfy the decision maker that they are a genuine visitor. This means that the applicant:
(e) must have sufficient funds to cover all reasonable costs in relation to their visit without working or accessing public funds. This includes the cost of the return or onward journey, any costs relating to dependants, and the cost of planned activities such as private medical treatment.
No Recourse to Public Funds
If a visitor is able to meet the requirements then a visitor visa is issued with the condition of No Recourse to Public Funds as per Paragraph V 4.23(a) of Appendix V for visitors.
V 4.23 Visit visas, leave to enter or an extension of stay as a visitor will be subject to the following conditions:
(a) no recourse to public funds;
UK Visitor Visa Accommodation Proof
For entry clearance at the port, i.e. airport, the immigration officer is authorised to ask questions relating to the whereabouts of an applicant’s accommodation in the UK and details of access to funds for meeting the costs that an applicant will be incurred during the period of stay in the UK.
UK C Visit Visa Extension
For initial and extension applications, the details relating to accommodation and maintenance costs are required to be disclosed in the application form.
UK Visitor Visa Funds Requirements
Applicants are not required to show any prescribed level of funds for their maintenance and accommodation in the UK. An applicant needs to enclose the supporting documents such as bank statements, payslips, tax documents, dividend vouchers, etc. to indicate that he/she has sufficient funds to cover the cost of living, accommodation, travelling and incidentals.
How Much Bank Balance to Show for Visitor Visa?
Since the minimum cost of a week’s trip for a single person to UK inclusive of an airline ticket is GBP 1,200-1,800/-. Therefore, an applicant should be having more than GBP 2,500/- in the bank account. If an applicant is travelling with a spouse then the min balance should be GBP 4,000-5,000/- so as to cover the cost of tickets, travelling, living and accommodation expenses in the UK. The availability of funds for the trip should be a reflection of:
Income enables an applicant to meet the cost of the stay in the UK. The sources of revenue and income can be many such as salary, profits, dividends, capital gains, annual bonus, rents, income from agricultural produce, etc. The income needed to put in the application form is the Net Income i.e. Gross Income minus Personal Income Tax. For instance, if the Gross Income is £1000/- per month and the Personal Income Tax rate is 20% then the Net Income will be £800/- per month.
These are ongoing financial commitments/liabilities that an applicant has to fulfil in his/her home country- even during his/her leave of absence from the native country and stay in the UK. There can be various types of financial obligations that an applicant is liable to fulfil such as business expenses, rent, mortgage payments, maintenance of dependants (spouse, children, elderly parents, relatives) that are required to be looked at for yielding net monthly savings.
The net disposable income or savings, exclusive of the financial commitments, should be sufficient to meet the costs of visiting the UK and the expenditure should be reasonable vis-à-vis financial circumstances of an applicant.
Account Turnover and Origin of Funds
In case an applicant provides documents that show sufficient funds for the planned stay in the UK; however, either all or the majority of available funds are not held in the account for a long duration of time then an applicant needs to provide the details of the origin of the available funds.
Third Party Funds
In case the funds are provided by a third party then these should be in agreement with the immigration rules on maintenance and accommodation. If the funds from the third party do not conform to the immigration rules, then there is a likelihood that the application would be refused. If the applicant fails to declare the third party support – for instance on the application form- and is unable to show that the funds genuinely belong to him/her then the funds will not be counted in the assessment process.
Children under 18 Years of Age
A child under 18 years of age applying to come to the UK as a visitor or seeking to extend stay, is not expected to have funds in his/her name. They may fulfil the maintenance requirements by showing access to funds from their parents or a bonafide third party. An unaccompanied child, at the border, may be asked for source/evidence of maintenance and accommodation during the trip to the UK.
UK Visitor Visa Sponsor Documents
In terms of Paragraph V 4.3 of Appendix V, a third party such as a family member, friend, a business associate can provide for maintenance and accommodation in support of a visit visa application. Moreover, any other person with whom an applicant has a genuine personal or professional relationship can also act as a third-party whether in the UK or outside the UK.
Funds, maintenance and accommodation provided by a third party
V 4.3 A visitor’s travel, maintenance and accommodation may be provided by a third party where the decision maker is satisfied that they:
(a) have a genuine professional or personal relationship with the visitor; and
(b) are not, or will not be, in breach of UK immigration laws at the time of decision or the visitor’s entry to the UK; and
(c) can and will provide support to the visitor for the intended duration of their stay.
V 4.4 The third party may be asked to give an undertaking in writing to be responsible for the applicant’s maintenance and accommodation. In this case paragraph 35 of Part 1 of these Rules applies also to Visitors. An applicant will normally be refused where, having been requested to do so, the applicant fails to provide a valid written undertaking from a third party to be responsible for their maintenance and accommodation for the period of any visit.
UK Sponsor Documents
In most of the cases, documents needed to sponsor visitor visa UK relates to proof of accommodation and sponsor bank balance. However, a sponsor needs to write a letter of invitation for the proposed trip, which is essentially undertaking in accordance with Paragraph 35 Part 1 of the Immigration Rules.
What Documents Do I Need to Invite Someone to the UK?
In case of a family member or a friend inviting an individual to visit the UK then evidence of sponsor’s immigration status in the United Kingdom is required such as a copy of the British Passport or residence card. For business visitor visa, a formal invitation letter on the letterhead to indicate the verifiable business credentials of the sponsor.
Proof of Accommodation UK Visa Sponsor
In order to proof accommodation, a sponsor may furnish an evidence of the residential property, where a visitor will live during the trip to the UK. The evidence could be a copy of property deed, mortgage statements, tenancy agreement, accountant’s letters, land registration document or any related document proving the details of a sponsor’s ownership or possession of the immovable property. Sponsor’s utility bills and council tax bills are not necessarily required.
UK Visitor Visa Sponsor Bank Balance
In case the sponsor is a friend or a family member then the sponsor must demonstrate that he/she has ample financial and economic resources that in addition to supporting the applicant’s visit to the UK, the sponsor can adequately support himself/herself and his/her dependents. In case the sponsor either fails to provide adequate evidence or there are some doubts about sponsor’s intentions to support the applicant then the application is likely to be refused.
A sponsor may also provide the latest bank or building society statements as a proof of funds to show that he/she can maintain the visitor in the UK.
UK Visitor Visa No Bank Account
At times elderly parents living in India, Pakistan, Nigeria etc. have No Bank Account in their name so as to prove ready availability of funds for the proposed trip to the UK so as to meet their son or daughter in the UK. Therefore, the evidence of funds by a sponsor is critical to demonstrate support funds required for visiting the UK.
Sponsor Inside the UK
The third party in the UK should not be in violation of the immigration laws at the time of application submission and its assessment. If the third party is in breach of the immigration rules/law, then the support will not hold sway.
Sponsor Outside the UK
A friend, family member or business associate outside the United Kingdom can provide financial support if he/she meets the following conditions:
- the third party has a genuine relationship – professional or personal – with the visitor; and
- the third party is in a position to bear the cost of accommodation and maintenance of the UK trip;
Establishing Genuine Relationship with the Third Party Sponsor
The genuineness of the relationship with the third party and intentions of the third party to support an applicant’s UK trip can be gauged by:
The previous history of the third party of ‘sponsoring’ visitors – for instance, past failures to support visitors may raise questions about the intentions and ability of the third party to do so for this application as well.
Nature of Relationship
The nature of the relationship between an applicant and the third party, for instance, where the applicant and the third party first met and how frequent and by what means and ways they communicate with each other;
Non-Financial Support by a Third Party
For a UK Visit Visa Application, the third party support for ONLY the provision of maintenance and accommodation are entertained under the immigration rules.
However, at times, third parties such as Member Parliaments provide undertakings in support of a visit visa application. Such commitment could be considered relevant for establishing an applicant’s credibility and intentions, but these are neither considered as evidence of funds nor a guarantee that a visitor will conform to the immigration rules. Moreover, the immigration officer neither actively seek out such undertakings nor accept an offer by an applicant to provide such a commitment.
Undertaking: UK Visa Invitation Letter
As per Paragraph 35 Part 1 of the Immigration Rules, a sponsor can provide UK Visa Sponsorship Letter to a visitor for maintenance and accommodation in the UK.
35. A sponsor of a person seeking leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom may be asked to give an undertaking in writing to be responsible for that person’s maintenance, accommodation and (as appropriate) personal care for the period of any leave granted, including any further variation or for a period of 5 years from date of grant where indefinite leave to enter or remain is granted. Under the Social Security Administration Act 1992 and the Social Security Administration (Northern Ireland) Act 1992, the Department of Social Security or, as the case may be, the Department of Health and Social Services in Northern Ireland, may seek to recover from the person giving such an undertaking any income support paid to meet the needs of the person in respect of whom the undertaking has been given. Under the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 the Home Office may seek to recover from the person giving such an undertaking amounts attributable to any support provided under section 95 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 (support for asylum seekers) to, or in respect of, the person in respect of whom the undertaking has been given. Failure by the sponsor to maintain that person in accordance with the undertaking, may also be an offence under section 105 of the Social Security Administration Act 1992 and/or under section 108 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 if, as a consequence, asylum support and/or income support is provided to, or in respect of, that person.