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Durham University


Applying for a Dependant visa

If you come to study in the UK on a Tier 4 (General) visa, your family members (dependants) may be able to apply to join you while you are here, either by applying at the same time as you, or later.


Your family members may be able to apply for a visa to join you* in the UK if you are:

  • Coming to study a programme at NQF level 7 or above that lasts 9 months or longer
  • A new government-sponsored student on a programme that lasts 6 months or longer
  • On the Tier 4 (General) Doctorate Extension Scheme

In addition to the above, your family members can apply for a visa as your dependants if they are:

  • Your husband, wife or civil partner
  • Your unmarried or same-sex partner
  • Your child under 18 years old

Please note: Your family members should not apply for, or accept a Visitor visa if they wish to stay with you in the UK for longer than six months. If they do enter the UK as a Visitor they will have to leave after a maximum of six months.

*If you are already studying in the UK and your family members are applying to join to you, you must be present in the UK at the time they apply.

Applying for a Dependant visa in the UK

If you are already in the UK with your family on a Tier 4 and Dependant visas and you need to extend your stay in the UK, you can include your dependants on your own Tier 4 (General) visa application

Alternatively, if needed, your dependants can apply seperately at a later date, once you have extended your own Tier 4 visa (but before their own vias have expired).

Applying for a Dependant visa outside the UK

Your dependants can either apply for a visa at the same time as you (if you intend to travel together) or at a later date. In either case your dependants should apply for a visa online, separately

Applying for a visa for your new born baby

If you have a baby born in the UK who does not yet have immigration permission, it is legal for them to remain in the UK without applying for permission to do so.

However, if you plan to leave the UK at any point, you must decide whether to:

Apply for a visa on behalf of your child in the UK before you leave


Apply for a visa in your home country before you return

You can apply for a visa on behalf of your child providing that:

  • Your baby is born during your most recent Tier 4 visa granted for a programme of more than six months OR
  • Your baby is born within three months of the expiry of your most recent Tier 4 visa

Please note: Birth in the UK does not automatically make a baby a British citizen. The baby needs to have a parent with British citizenship or settled status in the UK in order to be born British.

Financial requirements

The table below shows how much money is required for each dependant before applying:

Time on main applicant / Tier 4 student's visa remaining Maintenance required
9 months or longer £680 per month x 9 (maximum) = £6120
Less than 9 months £680 per month x number of months remaining until end of visa

Further information

Read the PBS Dependant policy guidance for further details eligibilty and application requirements.

Additional advice all of the above is available from UK Council for International Student Affairs (UKCISA)

The University of Durham makes every effort to ensure that the information published on this page is accurate. However, the University cannot guarantee the information may not be altered owing to circumstances beyond the University’s reasonable control. Such circumstances include (but are not limited to) change in Government policy, or change of law. Any changes will be incorporated into the University’s website as early as possible.