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 The eVisa rollout – what you need to know
Immigration law

The eVisa rollout – what you need to know



Persons subject to immigration control in the UK need to be able to prove they are in the UK lawfully. Most individuals with permission to stay in the UK for periods of more than six months will have been issued with a biometric residence permit (‘BRP’). A BRP can be used to confirm the holder’s identity, immigration status and recourse to public funds. This is all due to change with the rollout of eVisas.

  • What is an eVisa?

An eVisa is an online record of your immigration status and the conditions of your permission to enter or stay in the UK. When fully rolled out, eVisas will replace physical immigration documents.

  • What physical documents are being replaced by eVisas?

The documents being replaced by eVisas are:

  • biometric residence permits (BRPs)
  • biometric residence cards (BRCs)
  • passport endorsements (such as indefinite leave to enter wet ink stamps)
  • vignette stickers in passports (such as entry clearance or visa vignettes)

Updating your physical documents to an eVisa will not affect your immigration status or the conditions of your permission to enter or stay in the UK.

  • I currently have a physical immigration document. How do I obtain an eVisa?

BRPs are currently being issued to 31 December 2024 at the latest, even when the holder has permission to enter to remain in the UK beyond this date. This is being done in anticipation of the digitalisation of the UK’s immigration system.

eVisas are accessed through an online UKVI account. Visa holders will therefore need to create a UKVI account to access their eVisa. Once set up, you will be able to use your UKVI account to view and prove your status, check what rights you have in the UK and update your personal details, including your contact information. You will also be able to access your account to get a share code to allow others, such as employers, to view your status.

The Home Office has started to send out email invitations to visa holders to create a UKVI account to access their eVisas. Emails are being issued in phases before the process opens to all BRP holders in summer 2024. If you receive an email, you should follow the instructions to create an UKVI account. If you have not been contacted yet, you do not need to do anything now. You will be able to create an account to access to your eVisa later in 2024.

  • I have a biometric residence card (BRC), how do I access my eVisa?

Those with a BRC who have been granted status under the EU Settlement Scheme (EUSS) will already have an eVisa. Details of how this can be accessed and used will be on your grant letter/email.

If you have a BRC and you have not been granted status under the EUSS, obtained another form of immigration leave, or become a British citizen, then your BRC is no longer valid due to the end of free movement, even if it has not yet expired.

If you are a family member of a relevant EU, other EEA or Swiss citizen, you may be able to make a late application to the EUSS if you meet the eligibility criteria. Our team can assist you in making a late application to the Scheme if you fall into this category. If you are in this position, you should make efforts to regularise your immigration status as soon as possible and you should not travel internationally until you have obtained proof of your status.

  • I have proof of my indefinite leave to remain in my current/ expired/ lost passport, how do I access my eVisa?

Those with indefinite leave to enter or remain whose status is confirmed in another type of physical document (such as a wet-ink stamp in their passport or a vignette sticker) will first need to make a ‘no time limit’ application to replace their visa with a BRP. We can assist you in making this type of application. If successful, you will receive a BRP which you can use to create a UKVI account to access your eVisa later in 2024.

  • Will I still need my physical documents when I travel?

You will need to continue travelling with your physical documents until the end of 2024, even if you have already set up a UKVI account.

  • Keeping updated

We expect that the government will continue to update their guidance on eVisas as the transition from physical documents to the eVisa is rolled out. Those affected should continue to look out for personal correspondence from the Home Office and/ or sign up for Home Office email updates.

  • How we can help

Should you require immigration advice in relation to the eVisa or any immigration, asylum or nationality matter please be in touch with Elizabeth or Ashley at:

[email protected] or [email protected].


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Speak to us today on 0330 159 5555

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Get in touch

Call us for free on 0330 159 5555 or complete our online form below to submit your enquiry or arrange a call back.