The Immigration Health Surcharge is to now be applied to Australians and New Zealanders after April 2016. Previously citizens of these countries didn’t have to pay any IHS fees due to a reciprocal agreement between the governments of these countries. Unfortunately, despite no changes with the Austrailian and New Zealand governments, the Home Office will be implementing this charge to these migrants that come to the UK.

Does everyone from Australia and New Zealand have to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge?

Previously, no one from these countries had to pay the IHS. Now, those coming to stay in the UK for more than 6 months have to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge. Those on visitor visas or who are just coming into the UK for a visit since these nationals don’t require a visa for the UK, won’t need to pay for the IHS. If you are from Australia or New Zealand and come to the UK longer than 6 months on a visa such as a Tier 4 student visa, Ancestry visa or Tier 2 General visa, you will be required to pay the fee.

How much is the Immigration Health Surcharge?

This depends on the visa you are applying for. Basically, students pay £150 per year and everyone else pays £200 per year. Here is an example of how those fees could apply.

Case 1: John is from New Zealand and wants to do a Master’s degree in the UK. A Masters degree lasts 1 year and John would need to apply for a Tier 4 General visa. As the visa is one year in length his IHS fee will be £150 after April 2016. This fee is paid at the time of application. Without an IHS number the application will be refused.

Case 2: John changed his mind and wanted to take a course that lasts 2.5 years. He wants to know if he only pays £150x2.5=£375. The answer is that John has to pay £450. He has to pay for full years so any part year has to be paid as a full year.

Case 3: Amber is from Australia and comes from Australia. She is offered a Tier 2 General work visa for 3 years to work for a Law firm in London. She wants to know how much her IHS fee will be. Her visa is 3 years so her IHS fee is £600. If Amber extends her visa after 3 years for another 3 years then she will pay £600 again.

How much do other non EEA-nationals have to pay for Immigration Health Surcharge fees?

The fees mentioned above apply to all those from non-eea national countries so all students pay £150 per year for IHS fees and all workers or spouse visa applicants pay £200 per year. If there is a part-year then you pay for a full year for your immigration health surcharge fees.

If you are making an application to extend your stay in the UK or from overseas feel free to contact WM Immigration to help you understand the Immigration Health Surcharge fees and visa rules that apply to you.

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