In this article
Immigration law can be particularly frustrating to understand, especially for those wishing to move to the UK for work and study. In this article, we’ll be taking a look at biometric residence permits and how they allow migrants to temporarily stay in the UK.
Looking to cut to the chase? If you’re looking for a solicitor to help you resolve your immigration case, just call us on 0203 007 5500, or submit a contact form.
What is a biometric residence permit?
A biometric residence permit confirms your identity, right to study, and right to public services and any benefits that you are entitled to. It is a physical card that foreign nationals may require as proof of their UK immigration status. BRPs are a form of identification aimed at reducing illegal immigration and combatting illegal working in the UK.
As a foreign national, you will receive a BRP if you apply to come to the UK for longer than 6 months, extend your visa by more than 6 months or apply to settle in the UK. Transferring your visa to a new passport or applying for certain travel documents from the Home Office may also warrant one.
A BRP is different to a biometric residence card – a form of identification usually given to family members of someone from the European Union, or people without a visa.
What information is on a biometric residence permit?
Your BRP will include all your personal and biometric information – your name, date of birth, place of birth, fingerprints, and a headshot. It will also display your immigration status, and conditions for your stay. The permit displays your unique document number and contains a biometric chip to reduce the risk of forgery.
Depending on your visa status and the issue date, your BRP may not have a National Insurance number printed on it. In this case, you will need to apply for one from the Department of Work & Pensions. Without a National Insurance number, you will be unable to work, claim benefits, apply for student loans, or pay National Insurance contributions.
Talk to us now. Save costs further down the line.
Save yourself potentially thousands of pounds by seeking advice now. Speak to us today for more information.
Lines open 24/7
020 3007 5500
Why do I need a BRP?
Your BRP is a form of identification that you need to open a bank account, vote, or apply for a driving licence. Along with this prospective employers will check it, should you apply for work within the UK.
Once you have your BRP there is no requirement to always carry it with you. However, you will need to show it at the UK border with your passport when travelling outside of and returning to the UK. The permit remains valid for the duration of your leave, allowing you to stay, study and work within the UK until it expires.
How long is the process of getting a biometric residence permit?
This will depend on whether you submitted your application for a visa or immigration, within or outside of the UK. If you submitted your application within the UK, you will receive your permit in the post. You will acquire the permit within 7-10 days of receiving your decision letter – stating that you may remain in the UK – from the Home Office.
If you apply from outside of the UK, you must collect your BRP once you are in the UK. This must be within 10 days of your arrival. Your decision letter will state where you should collect your permit, with this being either a post office branch or a sponsor, depending on your chosen option when you applied.
Have an immigration case?
Do not worry, we are here to give the advice you need when you need it. Just contact us to arrange an appointment.
Lines open 24/7
020 3007 5500
How do children acquire a BRP?
Applicants for a BRP that are under the age of 16 are still required to give biometric information, but the process differs depending on their age bracket.
A parent or guardian over the age of 18 must accompany applicants under 16. The applicants must submit a headshot along with providing a fingerprint scan. However, they do not need to supply a signature. Children under the age of 6 do not need to provide a fingerprint scan.
Can I replace or renew a biometric residence permit?
You can replace and renew your expired or lost BRP, but this depends on which type of leave you had and whether you are in the UK. A new BRP is valid for the duration of your leave up to a maximum of 10 years. It is worth noting that replacing a BRP will not give you more time to remain in the UK if your leave is expiring. You will still need to apply to extend your leave to continue living and working in the UK.
- If you have indefinite leave to remain or enter you can use the BRP replacement service within the UK.
- If your visa is expiring, you will need to apply for an extended visa, which if granted, will come with a new BRP.
- If you are outside of the UK at the time of your BRP expiring, you can apply for a replacement BRP visa (costing £154) allowing you to enter the UK once. You must then apply for a replacement BRP once you return to the UK within 3 months of its expiry unless you have extenuating circumstances.
How can Britton and Time Solicitors help?
Whether you are applying for a biometric residence permit, or have a separate immigration case, we can help. With an initial consultation, our expert immigration solicitors can offer you:
- Unlimited time to go through the details of your case and ask any questions you may have
- An overview of your legal standpoint and your available options
- A precise time and fee estimate for your case
To arrange your initial consultation with our immigration team, simply call us on 0203 007 5500 or send an enquiry email to email@example.com