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Should You Consider Using the UK Immigration Priority Application Service?

Anyone who has applied for a Visa or indefinite leave to remain (ILR) will understand the frustration of waiting for weeks or even months for a final decision. The decision made by the Home Office will likely have significant implications for your life, family, and employment. For this reason, opting for a priority processing service for your immigration application can be of considerable value. There are additional costs, but simply having the confidence that your application will be handled within a set timescale can be highly advantageous.

What are the types of priority service available?

Priority services are provided by UK Visa and Citizen Application Services (UKVCAS) which is operated by an external company called Sopra Steria on behalf of the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI).

There are two tiers of priority service; the standard 'Priority' service and the 'Super Priority' service. The Priority service costs £500 in addition to your standard application fee and will ensure a decision is made within five working days (i.e. not weekends or bank holidays). The Super Priority service costs £800 and a decision will be made by the end of the next working day after your appointment with UKVCAS. If your appointment is on a weekend day, the decision will be made two working days later.

Can I use the priority service?

The priority service is not available to all UK immigration application types. Priority processing is available to those applying for (please note this list is not exhaustive):

Unfortunately, this service is not available for all ILR routes; for example, there is no priority or super-priority service available to Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa holders applying for ILR.

How do I apply for the UKVCAS priority service?

Having prepared your application and accompanying documentation/evidence, you will need to book an appointment with your local UKVCAS service point. These are spread across the UK - to find your nearest service point, refer to the UKCVAS website.

According to the UKCVAS website, appointments can be booked in two ways:

  • online - you will need to create a UKVI online account
  • phone - by calling UKVCAS on 0900 165 6600 (Note: calls cost £2.50 per minute)

There are three types of service point available depending on your specific needs:

  • core service points - these provide free of charge appointments and out of hours appointments bookable for a fee
  • enhanced service points - these provide additional services including document checking in advance of your appointment and document scanning
  • premium lounge - this is based in London and offers a more "personalised customer experience", according to UKVCAS

Appointment slots can be booked up to 28 days beforehand, and subject to availability can be for the same day or next day, including outside standard working hours and weekends.

It is highly recommended that prior to attending your appointment, your accompanying documents are all uploaded online with your application.

What happens at the UKVCAS priority appointment?

At your appointment, you will first be asked to show your appointment confirmation (showing the QR code on your appointment letter) and ID. You will then enrol your biometric information, including fingerprints, photograph and digital signature. UKCVAS will then ask for any additional supporting documents which yet to be scanned and uploaded.

To your appointment, you will need to take:

  • Your passport
  • Confirmation of appointment letter with QR code
  • Your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)
  • Your completed application form
  • Any supporting documents for your visa application - you should always take originals

Your appointment with UKCVAS should take no longer than 30 - 60 minutes; the time will be reduced if all of your documents have already been uploaded.

What happens after your priority appointment?

Following your appointment, you should receive a decision on your case by case within the target timescale. You will then receive your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) within 7 - 10 days. It is recommended that you are at home to receive and sign for your BRP when it arrives.

What if my priority Visa or application is delayed?

Using the Priority and Super Priority services does not guarantee your application will be handled in the timescale stated. There have been many cases of (often serious) delays. Delays are not typically related to UKCVAS, as their role is to ensure the required information is sent to UKVI who will make a decision on your application. In one case reported in the Guardian, a Canadian migrant who used the Super Priority service had to wait 38 days to receive their BRP (this should have been completed in 7 - 10 days).

The UKVI terms and conditions for the Super Priority service state "The super-priority visa service fee is non-refundable once your biometrics have been enrolled. It will not always be possible for UK Visas and Immigration to process applications within 24 hours. In these circumstances, we will let you know when you can expect your decision and whether your super priority visa service fee can be refunded. The amount paid for the super-priority visa service will not be refunded if the visa is refused".

As such, if your decision or paperwork is delayed, it may not be immediately clear if you will receive a refund as this is at the discretion of UKVI. Likewise, while they state they will let you know when a decision will be made if it is delayed, there are many examples of where no such communication has been received. In such circumstances, you can escalate the matter directly with UKVI or engage the services of immigration Solicitors who can take the matter up on your behalf with visa help uk.

Final words

While they offer no guarantee, the Priority and Super Priority services do have considerable benefits and will in most cases bring about a decision in a much tighter timeframe than it would otherwise. For this reason, we strongly advocate for their use where necessary and feasible. If you need assistance with using the Priority or Super-Priority services, we can help you with each stage of the process.

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ACQ5 Awards Award ACQ5 Awards Award
Lexis Nexis Lexis Nexis
Three Best Rated Three Best Rated
Department For International Development Department For International Development
University Of Cambridge University Of Cambridge
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O.L

Andy Tieu is absolutely amazing.

As a lawyer myself I can categorically say that he knows his stuff, gentle, responsive, cares about you and not just about the money, very professional.
I mean I can go on and on!

Andy and the entire team at Reiss Edwards are amazing!

Thanks again Andy.

Kiran Sardar


I found Joe very helpful and tremendous patience which is a must in this professional as there are lots of emotions always involved in each and every case.

The way they dealt with my case during COVID19 Situation is highly appreciable. I would definitely recommend Joe D. and Anna F. Anna is an amazing lady, her patience is beyond my words.

Her hard work and professionalism have no boundaries. She is the right person for all type of cases.

Thanks to Anna and Joe for all your support and guidance which helped me fulfill my dream.

I would say Reiss Edwards is lucky to have Joe D. and Anna F. Great job Reiss Edwards.

thanks once again. Anna you’re a Gem and a Star.

Cheyam Shaked

"Anna Foley was the lawyer helping my partner obtain an EEA EFM visa. She was outstanding. Handling the case with constant correspondence over a lengthy, lockdown delayed 7-month application process. Her expert advice guided us successfully through some difficult times as a result of COVID-19. Some of the best service I have received for any service ever! Often replying to emails late at night, offering to send additional correspondence to the home office and going above and beyond in handling our case! Well done and thank you Reiss Edwards and thank you Anna!!".

Isaac .T

"Professional service. I was very impressed with the fact that my ILR application was successful 6 weeks after the submission amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. I also think the portfolio put together by the team at Reiss Edwards has played a big part in the quick turnaround of my application".

Jesse Lee

"Reiss Edwards did a great job, and so much work, for their reasonable fixed fee. I would heartily recommend them to anyone looking to secure a Visa and /or Visa renewal. I will use them again when mine needs to renew. Great value".

Majlinda Berisha

"The help, the professionalism, the kindness from this team is phenomenal. A massive thank you to Anna Foley.

I have had a really tough time with getting my husband’s visa. My last immigration lawyer made many mistakes that caused stress, disappointments and sadness.

I was weary about getting another lawyer as I thought I was going to go through the same experience but no, it turned out better than what I had hoped or even imagined.

What I received was: constant emails and calls updating me and asking if anything else is needed. If I called and they missed my phone call I would get a call back within 10 minutes. All of my documents were carefully checked and I would get a reply the next day if anything was missing or not correct. There were times that I was impatient and asked to just send the visa off, but was reminded that everything had to be perfect and correct before submitting the application. I was told about every option I had and discussed what the best would be. I was always spoke in a nice, calm, polite manner.

The overall intelligence of this team, especially Anna Foley for me, is outstanding. I am speechless. Anna done such an amazing job on my husband’s application that although we couldn’t apply for the fast service and was told to wait for 12 weeks, we got a reply within 5 weeks.

That alone shows what an amazing and talented team Reiss Edwards are. Thank you".

Christine .C

"I wholeheartedly recommend Reiss Edwards to anyone who is in search of immigration advice. I had the pleasure of speaking with Amar who has been very thorough in finding a solution to my enquiry, and followed up with additional information even after the consultation. I normally don't leave reviews, and this firm already has enough good reviews for me to need to my own anyways! However, in this instance, I do hope that my review can let anyone who reads it be aware that RE is a great choice, these people care enough to help you the best they can".

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"Knowledgeable, experienced, and relatable. Translated a complex process into steps that are easy to follow. Cruised to 3 successive wins on my Tier 1 graduate/entrepreneurship visa which allowed us to play our part in making the UK a better and healthier place!".

Khasan Vosijonov

"Thank you, Ms. Anna Foley! I am writing this with tears of joy.

As a family, we are all grateful to Anna Foley and her firm Reiss Edwards, for doing all the hard work and giving us the best support. Finally We found the best law firm".

Saira Lawson-Brown

"Highly professional organisation and really supportive solicitors. Ina Iteva the solicitor that was provided to us was a blessing in disguise, as our first solicitor was let go off due to pandemic. She was so supportive and understanding throughout the process, and my husband spouse visa was granted due to their effort and attention to detail. We constantly try to keep in touch with her and consider her as more of a friend now than a solicitor. Sure, to bother her and the firm more in the future".

Nora Nkechi

"My Tier 1 Investor Visa was dealt with quickly and without issue. Would recommend Reiss Edwards as an Immigration law firm in London. Thank you to the team".

Deepak Chartbhurjh

"This is the only firm that i spoke with that didn't ask for money before listening to me, will be using them again. I used Reiss Edwards for my Tier 2 visa application and it was successful. The team was ever present and happy to answer my question. The caseworker that dealing with my case went on holiday yet by case did not suffer one bit. Another lawyer stepped and took over the case without any hassle".

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"I used Reiss Edwards immigration lawyers to assist with my immigration matter and that of my family. It was an EX1 application. They dealt with the matter properly and even when complications were coming up from the Home Office, they helped resolve the issue properly. They are very professional and are very popular in London. I am happy to have worked with them".

Top Notch Immigration Service

"Reiss Edwards is a top notch immigration service company. The way they handled our documentation and also the list of documents they sent was efficient and top quality. They helped us professionally throughout the process. We are very happy with the immigration advice we received from the team. We highly recommend them".

Mo Hussein

"I have been using Reiss Edwards for three years now for my family's immigration application. Both for my initial application and extension. They are really affordable. The team of solicitors at this firm are probably one of the most efficient and economical in terms of cost. They offered free advice over the phone and spent good time with us before inviting us for consultation".

Gallagher Jones

"I contacted Reiss Edwards to help me with my wife's UK settlement visa. They acted with utmost professionalism throughout the entire application. I spoke with Joe Dinh, he is an immigration solicitor and he is one of the best solicitors out there. He ensured that there was little to no room for error. At some point I thought he was over cautious. He remained calmed and continued to assure us on our immigration matter. Most people in his position would have panicked but he was calmed and continued to assure us. We received out positive outcome very quickly".

Richard Stone

"I have just had British Citizenship application approved. Prior to making the application, I was not sure which law firm i should hire to facilitate the paperwork. After a few hours of research, i decided to go with Reiss Edwards and i must confess that I wasn't disappointed. The immigration lawyers at Reiss Edwards handled my case well and they really knew what they were doing. They were fully aware of what documents I needed and it was easy for them to tell if my case was going to be easy or not. At the end of the day, I have not received my British citizenship within 3 months. If anyone is looking for a good immigration lawyer to handle their case, contact Reiss Edwards".

Fong Li

"Investing over 2 million pounds is definitely not a routine decision. We had to make sure that the Tier 1 investor immigration lawyers that we'd be picking has to be one of the best within the Tier 1 investor category. We contacted Reiss Edwards and they were able to get us not only the Tier 1 investor visa but also suggested profitable investment portfolios in addition to what we already had in mind".

Nancy Jacquard

"It's a shame that you don't have an 'Excellent' star rating on here, as my experience with Reiss Edwards is nothing short of an excellent rating. They handled my application for an Indefinite Leave to remain in April 2014 and did my husband's one very recently including my daughter. Every time i have approached them, they have continued to treat me with courtesy, respect and patience. Amar was indeed a very thorough and professional gentleman. He is very knowledgeable, corporative and engaging. He responded to my emails, calls and enquiries promptly. He was always reassuring. I could not have asked for a better Immigration service. I would recommend them over and over again for anyone looking for an immigration advice. They gave me a free immigration advice when i called them, and the quality of the advice was something other charge thousands for. If you need a particular, name, Amar would be it. He exemplifies, for me, the true, professional gentleman. He is a valuable asset to Reiss Edwards".

Florence Giwa

"I am glad that i instructed Reiss Edwards on my visa matter. It started with a 20 minutes free immigration advice. I met with Amar to discuss my ILR refusal. He gave me a great deal of quality advice and decided to take on my messy case. I had doubts on the merits of my case by he was relatively convinced he could win it. That made me quite secure. To be honest, things did not start as quick as I would have wanted, but they kept on communicating the process and state of things to me.A big thank you to Verusha and Foram. They were also very helpful. Brilliant and informative. Their fee was fair and reasonable, especially if you compare them to other law firms and immigration law firms in London; some of whom even told me that i would not be able to get an indefinte leave to remain in this country. The process was long but was worth it. In the end, a big thank you to Reiss Edwards".

Salisu Ibrahim

"Fantastic Solicitors!!! My wife's spouse visa extension application was refused by the Home Office and they gave her 14 days to leave the country. We contacted Reiss Edwards and they said "OK don't worry we will sort this out". They put together the list of documents for me to obtain and they prepared a bundle which was as thick as the printer it came out from.We followed everything they asked us to do and in the end we won our appeal and got our spouse visa. We can't recommend them enough and we have promised ourselves never to make any more UK visa applications without them".

Amir Sandeep

"The team of lawyers at Reiss Edwards are very professional and friendly people. Their experience in and around UK immigration law is quite extensive; be sure that you application is in safe and competent hands. My immigration matter was an indefinite leave to remain application based on Tier 1 on a self-employment basis. The immigration lawyers at Reiss Edwards made sure that the application was perfect and ready to be accepted. I got a positive decision and I recommend them highly for anyone who needs a UK immigration help".

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