If your child is aged between four and seventeen years old and you want them to come to study in the UK at an independent school, then immigration law provides for this through a Tier 4 (Child) Student visa. There are various eligibility criteria which must be fulfilled surrounding the age, status, length of time the child may spend in the UK, and their funding during this period; and specialist immigration lawyers from Oratto will be able to explain all the details to you.

Basic criteria for a Tier 4 (Child) Student visa

In order to apply for this visa, the child must have:

  • a confirmed place on a course
  • the consent of a parent or guardian
  • sufficient money to cover living costs and course fees

Oratto and child student visas

Applying for a Tier 4 (Child) Student visa through an Oratto member immigration lawyer is a quick and simple process. Oratto is an online method of linking those who need specific legal services under immigration law with high end solicitors skilled in this specific area. Having accurate and experienced advice on your visa application will give you the best chance of securing the result that you need.

To connect quickly and easily with an immigration lawyer you can select one from the list on this page or send your details to Oratto and we will use our Match function to identify the best solicitor for your individual needs.

Maintenance requirements

There are stringent requirements in terms of being able to pay for course costs, for support of the child and payment of living costs while they are studying in the UK. As well as demonstrating that you can pay for the course, the following criteria must be fulfilled:

  • have £560 minimum per month to accommodate and care for the student if you are the intended carer in the UK, up to a maximum of nine months
  • if the student is under 12 and a parent or guardian is accompanying them, then they must prove that they have available a sum of £1535 per month, for a maximum of nine months, as well as the full amount of the school fees. If there are additional children then there must be an extra £615 per month to cover living costs
  • if the child is 16/17, and living independently, then they must prove that they have £920 per month, if studying in central London, or £715 per month if studying elsewhere. It's also possible for this class of students to demonstrate an "established presence" in the UK. This will only apply if the child has completed a period of study for a minimum of six months during the previous leave period, or if they have applied to continue to study on a course and six months has already been completed. In this scenario you need only prove two months' worth of maintenance funds

Tier 4 (Child) Student visa rules and restrictions

You can:

  • apply from outside the UK
  • begin studying at an independent school
  • submit an application to extend your stay

In terms of employment, if the child is aged 16 or over then they may work for up to ten hours a week during term time and full time during the holidays. They can also participate in a work placement scheme if it is part of their course, but only for a maximum of 50% of the entire course time.

With this visa, the holder cannot:

  • spend any time studying at a state school (local authority funded school) or at a college for further education
  • be self-employed or have a full-time, permanent job
  • undergo any training to be a dentist or a doctor
  • undertake work as a professional entertainer or sportsperson
  • settle permanently in the UK
  • bring any other family members into the UK

If you are the parent of a child coming to study in the UK and you want to accompany them, then you can apply for a Parent of a Tier 4 (Child) visa.

If you have any questions about the visa application process, or you want some guidance on applying, contact immigration lawyers from Oratto today.