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Immigration health surcharge (IHS) set to increase to £624 in October 2020

The UK government have just announced that the Immigration health surcharge will be going up from £400 to £635 in October 2020.

This move was confirmed by Chancellor Rishi Sunak during a budget presentation session. His accompanying policy document states:

This measure increases the Immigration Health Surcharge from the current level of £400 per year to £624 per year for each surcharge liable non-EEA temporary migrant (including dependents). The measure also increases the discounted rate for students, their dependents and those on the Youth Mobility Scheme from £300 to £470. The surcharge will also be set at £470 for all children under the age of 18.

This will be implemented in October 2020 and expanded to include future EEA temporary migrants at the increased rate from January 2021.

All UK visa applicants are required to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge as part of their application fee. This is to enable access to the National Health Service (NHS).

Students on discounted rates and their dependents or children below 18 years and persons on the Youth Mobility Scheme will be charged £470, this used to be £300.

This increase is in line with the Tory government's manifesto in 2019, where they promised to increase the IHS to increase funding to the NHS. So, in a sense, the increase was expected. What was not expected, however, is the timing of the increase as well as the manner in which this was going to implement.

Taxpaying migrants already pay for the NHS through their taxes, so this increase in a way represents a tax on UK visas. Other visa fees do not appear to be going up as well, so this will only serve to increase the total cost of visa applications to the UK in many regards.

Is Immigration Health Surcharge Refundable?

The surcharge is expected to be paid at the beginning of every visa application process and for applicants whose visa application processes were not successful will be refunded.

What Information Will I Need For The IHS Payment?

If you're applying online, you'll be asked for:

your start and end dates on your certificate of sponsorship

  • your course dates if you're applying as a student

If you're applying by post, you'll also be asked for:

If you're making an immigration application online you pay the healthcare surcharge as part of the application process. You must complete the payment and return to the online immigration application in less than 30 minutes.

If you're making an immigration application by post you must pay the healthcare surcharge before you complete your application.

There is certain information you will need to provide when paying for IHS, this includes;

  • Your email address
  • Full name
  • If you are applying outside of the UK you will need to provide your visa application center.
  • Your date of birth
  • If you are a student, the date of your course should be included
  • The type of visa you are applying for (i.e. student visa)
  • Your passport number
  • Nationality

Similar information will be needed for

  • dependents applying for a visa
  • or a family member in the UK you are planning to join. Included should be their immigration health surcharge reference number or their Leave expiry date.

For Legal advice and information on Business travels and immigration to the UK, feel free to contact our immigration solicitors on 020 3744 2797 or send us an email on

Related Article: Immigration Health Surcharge fully explained

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