Academic Registry

Overstayers Policy

You should always ensure that you either leave the UK or apply to extend your visa on or before your current expiry date. If you don’t you will become an ‘overstayer’, which is an illegal status in the UK.

You must ensure that you always have a current visa which allows you to study in the UK, and our International Student Support team can provide you with immigration advice, and information about Protecting your Tier 4 status.

If you overstay your visa i.e. you let it expire before you've made an application for a new visa, you will be come an 'overstayer', and the University has an Overstayers Policy which describes what steps we will take with students in this situation.

It's important to note that the rules around overstaying changed in November 2016 and are stricter than they were previously.  The current guidance says the following:

 
All migrants wishing to extend their leave must do so before their existing leave expires.

There are limited exceptions relating to overstaying previous conditions (remaining in the UK when the applicant’s leave to be here has expired). Any period of overstaying will not count against the applicant where either of these conditions apply:  
  1. the application is made within 14 days of the applicant’s leave expiring and the Secretary of State accepts there is a good reason beyond the control of the applicant, or their representative, preventing the application from being made in time, the overstaying will be disregarded. The reason for the overstay should be provided in the application
  2. the application is made following the refusal of a previous application for leave which was made in-time (or to which the exception at point 1 above applied) and within 14 days of: 
  • the refusal of the previous application for leave; or
  • the expiry of any leave which has been extended by section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971; or
  • the expiry of the time limit for making an in-time application for administrative review or appeal; or
  • any administrative review or appeal being concluded, withdrawn, abandoned or lapsed.
     

If you need advice about your immigration status or overstaying your visa, please contact an International Student Adviser: James Gordon, Joanne Chee or Claudine Grant, by emailing immigration@sussex.ac.uk