UK Visas and Immigration

UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) is a division of the Home Office responsible for the United Kingdom's visa system. It was formed in 2013 from the section of the UK Border Agency that had administered the visa system.

UK Visas and Immigration
Agency overview
FormedApril 2013 (2013-04)
Minister responsible
Agency executive
  • Mark Thomson, Director General
Parent agencyHome Office
WebsiteUK Visas and Immigration


The then Home Secretary, Theresa May, announced the abolition of the UK Border Agency on 26 March 2013, with the intention that its work would be returned to the Home Office.[1] The agency's executive agency status was removed, and internally it was split, with one division responsible for the visa system and the other for immigration enforcement.[2] The responsible minister is the Minister of State for Immigration.[3]

Sarah Rapson, the Registrar General for England and Wales, was appointed as interim Director General of UK Visas and Immigration. Her position was made permanent on 5 March 2014.


UKVI operates the UK visa system, managing applications from foreign nationals seeking to visit or work in the UK, and also considers applications from businesses and educational institutions seeking to become sponsors for foreign nationals. It also considers applications from foreign nationals seeking protection or British citizenship.


UKVI is spread over nine buildings across the country.[4]

See also


  1. "UK Border Agency 'not good enough' and being scrapped". BBC News. 26 March 2013. Retrieved 19 March 2014.
  2. "UK Border Agency's transition to Home Office". UK Border Agency. 3 May 2013. Retrieved 12 May 2013.
  3. "Minister of State for Immigration". GOV.UK. Retrieved 26 June 2017.
  4. "Visa premium service centres". Retrieved 20 May 2017.

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