As current ECAA Turkish Businessperson visa holders know, the UK government stopped accepting applications for the Turkish Businessperson visa after Brexit. Luckily, the halting of the Turkish Businessperson visa program will not affect current visa holders in the UK, who will be allowed to serve out (and even extend) the duration of their original visa-period. However, current Turkish Businessperson visa holders with families will likely be anxious to learn how the demise of the visa-program will affect their dependents. If you are in the UK on a Turkish Businessperson visa, and you were planning on having your family join you in the country, the question remains, “Can my family come to the UK as dependants of a Turkish Businessperson visa holder if the government is no longer accepting applications for that visa category?”. Happily, the ban on new applications does not affect the family members of anyone already on a Turkish Businessperson visa. What this means is that family members of someone on a Turkish Businessperson visa can continue to apply for UK immigration as dependents of the original visa-holder. Today’s blog will therefore address family members of Turkish Businessperson visa holders in the context of the ending of the UK’s membership of the EU. Read on to learn how family members of Turkish Businessperson visa holders can come to the UK, and for information on how to satisfy the requirements for a Turkish Businessperson visa holder’s family.
Turkish Businessperson visa after Brexit
- The UK immigration process fundamentally changed when Britain officially left the European Union, on January 31st of last year.
- After Brexit, the UK shifted to a point-based immigration system, which now guides all immigration routes, including the Turkish Businessperson visa.
- For years, Turkish nationals have achieved their UK immigrations dreams through the Turkish Businessperson visa. Since Brexit, however, the Turkish Businessperson visa holder program has been cancelled, meaning that if you are a Turkish national, you will no longer be able to apply for UK immigration through the program.
- If you already achieved UK immigration through the Turkish Businessperson visa, however, and you were planning on bringing your family with you to the country once you settled, that option is still available to you.
- The ending of the UK’s membership of the EU has not affected the visa validity period for current Turkish Businessperson visa holders, who can continue to stay in the county for up to 3 years, with the possibility to extend.
Family members of Turkish Businessperson visa holders
- The short answer to the question “can my family come to the UK as dependants of a Turkish Businessperson visa holder” is yes.
- Family members who are outside the country can still apply to become dependents of Turkish Businessperson visa holders, while current dependents of Turkish Businessperson visa holders (i.e. those who are already in the country as dependents of Turkish Businessperson visa holders) can still apply to extend their visas.
- However, while Turkish Businessperson visa holders can indeed bring their family to the UK, there are limitations on who they can bring, how long they can stay in the country, and who can be classified as a dependent.
- The conditions for would-be dependents are outlined below. In general, acceptable dependents are spouses and children of the visa holder. More specifically, they are the following:
- Husbands/wives, civil partners, and unmarried partners (you can bring over your unmarried partner so long as you prove that you have been in a relationship with them and cohabitating together for a minimum of two years).
- Children who are 21+ (only those who are already in the country as dependents of the visa holder).
- Children younger than 21 years old.
- All children, regardless of which of the above categories they fall into, must also:
- Be unmarried (and also not in a civil partnership).
- Be childless.
- Reside in the home of the visa holder (children who are boarding at high school, college, or university are exempt from this requirement).
- Please note that if you had a child while you were in the country on a Turkish Businessperson visa, and your child’s other parent is also not a British citizen, you will have to apply for a dependent visa for that child, who does not receive British citizenship simply because she was born in the country. Failing to apply for a dependent visa for a child in this scenario could result in them being denied re-entry into the country should they travel abroad, and, should they reach 18-years old prior to you applying for them to become a dependent, jeopardize their ongoing residency in the country.
- The following materials and documents are requirements for a Turkish Businessperson visa holders’ families. Every family member who is applying to become a dependent of a Turkish Businessperson visa holder from inside the country (i.e. those who are applying to extend their dependent visa) will therefore have to present one of the following:
- Biometric Residence Permit (known as a BRP)
- Evidence that the visa holder can financially afford to house and provide for the dependents throughout his/her visa validity period.
- (For would-be dependents younger than 21 years old) Evidence that the Turkish Businessperson visa holder assumes total responsibility for the dependent (Please note that this only applies in the event that the Turkish businessperson visa holder represents the child’s only UK-based parent).
- Please note that children who reside with the visa holder will also need to present proof of this through one of the following documents/materials:
- Valid letter from student’s school
- NHS registration
- Credit card statement
- Bank statement
- Driver’s licence
How to apply
- Spouses and children can apply (or their parent can apply for them) to become dependents of Turkish Businessperson visa holders by contacting us through this link.
- Dependent Turkish Businessperson visa applicants will need access to the original Turkish Businessperson visa holder’s Unique Application Number (UAN) or Global Web Form (GWF), which the visa holder received as part of his or her original application for the Turkish Businessperson visa.
- While the majority of the application process takes place online, please note that applicants will likely also have to submit their biometric information (photo and fingerprints) as part of providing evidence of their identity on their application, for the ultimate purpose of receiving a Biometric Residency Permit (BRP). This will involve going in person to a UK Visa and Citizenship application services (UKVCAS) location. Alternatively, applicants may be allowed to demonstrate evidence of their identity by accessing the online official UK gov app, known as the UK Immigration: ID Check, and scanning an acceptable ID.
- Applicants usually receive a decision on their application—whether their application is to either 1) become a dependent of a Turkish Businessperson visa holder or 2) extend their visa as a dependent of a Turkish Businessperson—in six months or fewer. Please note that expediated processing times are occasionally available, for a fee.
- Please note that the application for dependents of a Turkish Businessperson visa holder is free.
- However, applicants do assume costs associated with biometric data collection (usually £19.20 for applicants applying from within the country).
How long can they stay?
- Family members of ECAA Turkish Businessperson visa holders who successfully receive a dependent visa to enter the UK can remain the country for as long as their partner/parent’s visa is valid for. Therefore, when a Turkish Businessperson visa holder’s visa period ends, the visas of all of his/her dependents will also end.