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British Citizenship - New Online Application

A section for posts relating to applications for Naturalisation or Registration as a British Citizen. Naturalisation

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doctorgo
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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by doctorgo » Tue Dec 04, 2018 9:26 am

gkuk wrote:
Wed Nov 28, 2018 4:11 pm
Hi,

I have filed for my daughter and wife for British citizenship via the new online process.

Will be booking an appointment with ukvcas and uploading the documents to their website soon.

I am not able to find any information about how to apply for the passport along with this citizenship, even though in Gov. UK website it clearly says you can apply for both together.

Has anyone give through this ? Any advice

Thanks in advance
G

Can you please describe the application process with UKVCAS lounge? Did they copy your passport and returned it to you? Or you had to submit your passport? What about the other docs...did they just check them in person, then scan and upload to UKVI and then hand you all the originals back?

TAd1
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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by TAd1 » Tue Dec 04, 2018 10:25 pm

Hi everyone,

I need some help.

I applied online for my naturalisation on Sunday and I have my appointment to submit my documents via the new service on 7 December (Friday).

For proof of living in the U.K. it says passport with stamps is sufficient. I have A LOT of stamps in my passport. Do I need to scan all the pages of my passport.

I also have employment letters for proof of living here. I only have my last two p60s but I have my p45. I also have my HMRC yearly tax code letters.

Do you think my proof of employment letters with p60s and p45 is sufficient? I have applied via marriage so I need to prove the last three years. My job I left in 2016 is the one I don’t have a p60 for or payslips as everything was electronic but they sent me a proof of employment letter that I requested for my application.

The closet open centre to me under the new service is the premium one which I had to pay extra for and they do a document checkin service too. When I paid it said I would get a next day decision after biometrics.

I will also keep you posted on the timeframes just worried about the proof of living here part.

Thank you for your help!

Trishna

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by arovbukay » Wed Dec 05, 2018 3:06 pm

So I went for my appointment on Saturday, I had paid premium service (£100) and Document check (£30), the whole process took approx. 30 mins.

They took biometrics, then checked the docs that I had uploaded - even though I received an email saying no action required from the document check the day before the appointment.

They also scanned each page of my passport that had stamps along with the 2 x referee letters with my picture attached, not sure why I needed to take a photograph and have my name written on the reverse if they were going to sign.

I asked how long before I know the result, the guy doing the checks didn't know and couldn't advise either. Just said please call the number. How do I know how long this will take, any ideas anyone?

Thanks

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alterhase58
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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by alterhase58 » Wed Dec 05, 2018 4:37 pm

arovbukay wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 3:06 pm
So I went for my appointment on Saturday, I had paid premium service (£100) and Document check (£30), the whole process took approx. 30 mins.

They took biometrics, then checked the docs that I had uploaded - even though I received an email saying no action required from the document check the day before the appointment.

They also scanned each page of my passport that had stamps along with the 2 x referee letters with my picture attached, not sure why I needed to take a photograph and have my name written on the reverse if they were going to sign.

I asked how long before I know the result, the guy doing the checks didn't know and couldn't advise either. Just said please call the number. How do I know how long this will take, any ideas anyone?

Thanks
The processing and deciding is still done by UKVI - and they have a standard assumption of six months - but could be just one to three months.
This is just my opinion as a member of this forum and does not constitute immigration advice.
Please do not send me private messages asking for advice - they will be ignored

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by nadworks » Thu Dec 06, 2018 12:38 pm

I just went through the "NEW SERVICE" on Monday and the experience was atrocious:

1. completed online application and payment on UKVI within which I had to decide between "new" and conventional service processing. Decided to use the new service after checking available of freshly opened centres in central London.

2. After payment was taken, I was forwarded to the Sopra Steria UKVCAS website to book an appointment. The three nearest centres to me (basically all London centres) had no appointments at all listed. Not a single one - not even premium ones or appointments way in the future. None. Zero options. Slight frustration set in. Last time I went through the process I simply booked an appointment with my local council, which was easy and fast. I was now regretting I'd opted for the new process and started to mildly panic.

3. As the system only works on a by-postcode basis, I was unable to bring up further lounges despite the fact that I was now even willing to drive across the country to find a lounge that could give me an appointment.

4. I was starting to bad quality postcodes in the south-east of England, just to get more options. Croydon always showed at the top, but the first available date was between Christmas and new year for £100. Kinda crazy after already spending £1,349.00 for the second time (previous application attempted was rejected).

5. phoned both UKVI (who just said "out of our hands" and "nothing to do with us") and Sopra (on premium number for £2.40). The latter advised me to keep refreshing the available centres page since new openings are being made available throughout the day. What an utterly ridiculous was of playing Russian roulette...

6. I eventually found an availability in Brighton (2 hours drive from here) for this coming Monday and at a premium rate of £100. I never took Sopra's advice and sat down to refresh the web page over and over to see if I could get in somewhere.

7. I uploaded the documents I had - however the upload categories did in no way match the checklist or requirements from the UKVI application process.

I might have just been unlucky, but after carefully planning my citizenship application in spring only to be rejected after realising I've been holding the wrong type of residency card for over a year, and being aware of the looming crash out of the EU in Match which will end my chance of dual citizenship, I was slightly against the clock.

To me this "new" process is a complete mess unless it drastically speeds up the acceptance process (which I don't think it does - but please correct me if I'm wrong). The lack of visibility of available appointment slots at the centres near you at point of decision-making which system to opt into is a serious weak spot.

It's another example of the government outsourcing and privatising a part of the process they don't want to deal with anymore and leaving the applicants at the mercy of private companies' chaos and greed.

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by trueblue1981 » Sun Dec 09, 2018 11:11 pm

Hello All,

Hope everyone is doing well.
I have a couple of questions about the new online application and would really appreciate some guidance.

1. I have been working on the online application since October (filling for four persons), I am almost done with the applications - but recently I saw that the form has been updated on 1st November 2018. Since I am working on the form since October my question is: should I start filling a new form from the start or just finalised the old form and the recent updates on 01/01/18 will be reflected in the form I have been using since October 2018?

2. How can I be sure that I was present in the country on a given date (date of application)? For example, If I am to submit my application on say 20 December 2018, how can I be sure that I was present on 20 December 2013 in the UK? I am asking this question because sometimes immigration in European countries have not stamped my passport and I do not have all my tickets or boarding passes going back to 2013.

2. Regarding processing times, I have been hearing that it is better not to apply very close to Christmas break and end of the year as cases can be ignored due to holiday rush and have been advised by a friend to instead wait and apply the 1st week of January when everyone returns to full work. Is there any truth to this logic or should I just apply before Christmas break? What do you think?

Best Regards,

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by nadworks » Mon Dec 10, 2018 9:39 pm

arovbukay wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 3:06 pm

I asked how long before I know the result, the guy doing the checks didn't know and couldn't advise either. Just said please call the number. How do I know how long this will take, any ideas anyone?
Did you by any chance get any type of confirmation that the process was completed successfully? In fact, any confirmation to take home that you have actually attended the appointment? I just returned from a trip to Brighton where I had to endure a few hours wait (despite being early from my appointment), because they experienced serious technical issues and had not been trained on the process. Lovely people, but not exactly assuring me that they knew what they were doing.

The procedure was the same as what you described, @arovbukay, but at the end there was nothing for me to "take home" as reference. And there's been no email either...

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by arovbukay » Tue Dec 11, 2018 9:21 am

No, didn’t get any confirmation “receipt”

What’s also a bit worrying is when logging on to the sopra site, it still shows my appointment as pending, no completion there etc

Do we just wait and hope something is emailed? Posted?

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by nadworks » Wed Dec 12, 2018 10:09 am

You are right. The ukvcas.co.uk website has not changed any of my details. The appointment (which is now in the past) can still be cancelled, new documents could still be uploaded, deleted etc.
This entire new process is a ridiculous shambles - a reflection of everything else happening in our country right now.

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by nadworks » Wed Dec 12, 2018 10:29 am

I just called the HO and was told that the issues with this new system have been widely reported and are known. Apparently, there is indeed no written or otherwise tangible assurance for a successful appointment completion and document upload. So the fact that we didn't receive anything (not even an email) is "normal" and expected.

The HO will contact an applicant upon not having received the uploaded/transmitted documents within 10 days. Should there be an issue, proof of booked appointment should be sufficient to demonstrate that the problem was on the side of SOPRA (note the word "should"). The person I spoke to was unable to walk me through a standard procedure for resolving such issues. The system is simply too new to have carved out a path for failed transmissions yet.

johnhkg
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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by johnhkg » Wed Dec 12, 2018 12:30 pm

arovbukay wrote:
Wed Dec 05, 2018 3:06 pm
So I went for my appointment on Saturday, I had paid premium service (£100) and Document check (£30), the whole process took approx. 30 mins.

They took biometrics, then checked the docs that I had uploaded - even though I received an email saying no action required from the document check the day before the appointment.

They also scanned each page of my passport that had stamps along with the 2 x referee letters with my picture attached, not sure why I needed to take a photograph and have my name written on the reverse if they were going to sign.

I asked how long before I know the result, the guy doing the checks didn't know and couldn't advise either. Just said please call the number. How do I know how long this will take, any ideas anyone?

Thanks
Amongst the many emails you receive from UKVI and UKVCAS at the time of submitting online application, you'll find one from UKVI that tells you that your application will normally be decided upon within 8 weeks.

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by johnhkg » Wed Dec 12, 2018 12:35 pm

nadworks wrote:
Thu Dec 06, 2018 12:38 pm
I just went through the "NEW SERVICE" on Monday and the experience was atrocious:

1. completed online application and payment on UKVI within which I had to decide between "new" and conventional service processing. Decided to use the new service after checking available of freshly opened centres in central London.

2. After payment was taken, I was forwarded to the Sopra Steria UKVCAS website to book an appointment. The three nearest centres to me (basically all London centres) had no appointments at all listed. Not a single one - not even premium ones or appointments way in the future. None. Zero options. Slight frustration set in. Last time I went through the process I simply booked an appointment with my local council, which was easy and fast. I was now regretting I'd opted for the new process and started to mildly panic.

3. As the system only works on a by-postcode basis, I was unable to bring up further lounges despite the fact that I was now even willing to drive across the country to find a lounge that could give me an appointment.

4. I was starting to bad quality postcodes in the south-east of England, just to get more options. Croydon always showed at the top, but the first available date was between Christmas and new year for £100. Kinda crazy after already spending £1,349.00 for the second time (previous application attempted was rejected).

5. phoned both UKVI (who just said "out of our hands" and "nothing to do with us") and Sopra (on premium number for £2.40). The latter advised me to keep refreshing the available centres page since new openings are being made available throughout the day. What an utterly ridiculous was of playing Russian roulette...

6. I eventually found an availability in Brighton (2 hours drive from here) for this coming Monday and at a premium rate of £100. I never took Sopra's advice and sat down to refresh the web page over and over to see if I could get in somewhere.

7. I uploaded the documents I had - however the upload categories did in no way match the checklist or requirements from the UKVI application process.

I might have just been unlucky, but after carefully planning my citizenship application in spring only to be rejected after realising I've been holding the wrong type of residency card for over a year, and being aware of the looming crash out of the EU in Match which will end my chance of dual citizenship, I was slightly against the clock.

To me this "new" process is a complete mess unless it drastically speeds up the acceptance process (which I don't think it does - but please correct me if I'm wrong). The lack of visibility of available appointment slots at the centres near you at point of decision-making which system to opt into is a serious weak spot.

It's another example of the government outsourcing and privatising a part of the process they don't want to deal with anymore and leaving the applicants at the mercy of private companies' chaos and greed.
I totally agree with you Nadworks. I am about a week behind you. Submitted my online application this Monday. Paid all fees upfront, and then find that there are no appointments available in any of the UKVCAS centres near me. What a shambles!!! I'm also facing a two hour trip to Croydon next Monday, and two hours back again. In the past I had a choice of two NDRS venues within 20 minutes drive!!!

How did it go at your appointment at Brighton?

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by nadworks » Wed Dec 12, 2018 4:03 pm

I arrived 1hr early (just in case), so was ok to wait until my actual appointment time when they mentioned there was a massive backlog.

The staff were very nice (Brighton Library staff - who told me they had no more than 5mins training/induction on the system).

When my actual appointment time came along, I was told that they had not even started on people who had their appointment 2 hours ago, that there were problems with the system and that they were in a phone support queue to get it fixed.

2 hours later it was finally my turn, the 2 members of staff looked extremely stressed and overwhelmed. I felt sorry for them. The process looked like a nightmare - even to me, a web developer. It took approx 30mins, but could have been 10mins had the system been more reliable without crashing every so often. Each time it happened, it forced them to start again from the beginning.

This whole experience caused me to mistrust that my application was actually submitted correctly.
They told me that they had a family from Pakistan with a young child there the day before whose application took six (6!!!) hours to put through the system.

Shocking.

johnhkg
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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by johnhkg » Thu Dec 13, 2018 1:58 pm

nadworks wrote:
Wed Dec 12, 2018 4:03 pm
I arrived 1hr early (just in case), so was ok to wait until my actual appointment time when they mentioned there was a massive backlog.

The staff were very nice (Brighton Library staff - who told me they had no more than 5mins training/induction on the system).

When my actual appointment time came along, I was told that they had not even started on people who had their appointment 2 hours ago, that there were problems with the system and that they were in a phone support queue to get it fixed.

2 hours later it was finally my turn, the 2 members of staff looked extremely stressed and overwhelmed. I felt sorry for them. The process looked like a nightmare - even to me, a web developer. It took approx 30mins, but could have been 10mins had the system been more reliable without crashing every so often. Each time it happened, it forced them to start again from the beginning.

This whole experience caused me to mistrust that my application was actually submitted correctly.
They told me that they had a family from Pakistan with a young child there the day before whose application took six (6!!!) hours to put through the system.

Shocking.
Thanks for that, Nadworks. This may explain why no appointments are available at the newly opened library centres at Reading and Wimbledon (the most convenient ones for me). I expect they are now getting the training and practical experience needed before handling real applications (or at least I hope they are...)

I'm now much happier knowing my appointment is at the Croydon Core Centre (Sopra Steria offices) which has been operating for over a month now and other posters report a reasonably quick process.

trueblue1981
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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by trueblue1981 » Thu Dec 13, 2018 10:21 pm

Can anyone advise?
trueblue1981 wrote:
Sun Dec 09, 2018 11:11 pm
Hello All,

Hope everyone is doing well.
I have a couple of questions about the new online application and would really appreciate some guidance.

1. I have been working on the online application since October (filling for four persons), I am almost done with the applications - but recently I saw that the form has been updated on 1st November 2018. Since I am working on the form since October my question is: should I start filling a new form from the start or just finalised the old form and the recent updates on 01/01/18 will be reflected in the form I have been using since October 2018?

2. How can I be sure that I was present in the country on a given date (date of application)? For example, If I am to submit my application on say 20 December 2018, how can I be sure that I was present on 20 December 2013 in the UK? I am asking this question because sometimes immigration in European countries have not stamped my passport and I do not have all my tickets or boarding passes going back to 2013.

2. Regarding processing times, I have been hearing that it is better not to apply very close to Christmas break and end of the year as cases can be ignored due to holiday rush and have been advised by a friend to instead wait and apply the 1st week of January when everyone returns to full work. Is there any truth to this logic or should I just apply before Christmas break? What do you think?

Best Regards,

nakau
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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by nakau » Fri Dec 14, 2018 9:52 am

Hi all,

Just going to share my experience using the new service. Applying for citizenship as a spouse of a BC. Had my appointment on the 06/12/2018

I paid the 60 quid and had a 3pm appointment at the closest library to me. I had to wait until 5pm to be seen. I don't mind waiting as i understand that its a process and sometimes things don't go as planned. There were two ladies scanning all the documents etc and then there was a manager who kept on popping in and out trying to rush the ladies who were getting all my documentation. They also had a lady who came half way through my appointment that should have been seen earlier on in the day but because they were running late she had to leave and come back after work. That meant that the manager kept on popping in saying to the document scanning ladies are you done yet as this other lady needed to be seen promptly. I understand that this lady had been inconvenienced but i too had paid the same price so surely i should get the same level of service and not be rushed. The manager kept on asking the ladies, what else needed to be scanned. Apparently according to them they only needed my passport. At this point i was really confused by it all and asked for them to scan through some of my proof of living etc as it had said i needed that from my online application. The manager kept on flapping saying that it wasn't needed and that it wasn't time efficient as it said it wasn't needed and that this other lady had been waiting the whole day. I managed to get all the other bits scanned as required but i had to push them to let me.

I left feeling very worried and uncertain and i also left without any confirmation of the appointment or that my documents had been scanned etc.

I'll keep you all posted.

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by nadworks » Fri Dec 14, 2018 11:45 am

nakau wrote:
Fri Dec 14, 2018 9:52 am
I left feeling very worried and uncertain and i also left without any confirmation of the appointment or that my documents had been scanned etc.
Wow, very much echoing what I've been through. May I suggest that you complain on the Sopra Steria website to create a record of your experience? https://www.ukvcas.co.uk/contact-us/complaint - Maybe even just copy/paste your forum post as a whole?

eu_applicant
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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by eu_applicant » Fri Dec 14, 2018 8:18 pm

For anyone considering travelling to Croydon for the new service, please have in mind that the process could take over 3 (very frustrating) hours even if you have all your documents scanned.

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by romrom_86 » Sat Dec 15, 2018 12:30 am

TAd1 wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 2018 10:25 pm
Hi everyone,

I need some help.

I applied online for my naturalisation on Sunday and I have my appointment to submit my documents via the new service on 7 December (Friday).

For proof of living in the U.K. it says passport with stamps is sufficient. I have A LOT of stamps in my passport. Do I need to scan all the pages of my passport.

I also have employment letters for proof of living here. I only have my last two p60s but I have my p45. I also have my HMRC yearly tax code letters.

Do you think my proof of employment letters with p60s and p45 is sufficient? I have applied via marriage so I need to prove the last three years. My job I left in 2016 is the one I don’t have a p60 for or payslips as everything was electronic but they sent me a proof of employment letter that I requested for my application.

The closet open centre to me under the new service is the premium one which I had to pay extra for and they do a document checkin service too. When I paid it said I would get a next day decision after biometrics.

I will also keep you posted on the timeframes just worried about the proof of living here part.

Thank you for your help!

Trishna
Hi Trishna

Please can you give us some more details on the options for the applications?

You mentioned that they give decision 24 hours after taking biometrics?!

What option is that? How much did you pay in total?

Soon I will become eligible for naturalisation, after 10 year long residency and 1 year ILR.

I was wondering if you can advise what is the quickest way to apply for the naturalisation and passport.

I believe there used to be a service offered by councils, where you could apply them both at the same time, but that option is gone.

So I want to know if there are any other fast options?!

Many thanks.

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Re: British Citizenship - New Online Application

Post by alterhase58 » Sat Dec 15, 2018 9:00 am

romrom_86 wrote:
Sat Dec 15, 2018 12:30 am
TAd1 wrote:
Tue Dec 04, 2018 10:25 pm
Hi everyone,

I need some help.

I applied online for my naturalisation on Sunday and I have my appointment to submit my documents via the new service on 7 December (Friday).

For proof of living in the U.K. it says passport with stamps is sufficient. I have A LOT of stamps in my passport. Do I need to scan all the pages of my passport.

I also have employment letters for proof of living here. I only have my last two p60s but I have my p45. I also have my HMRC yearly tax code letters.

Do you think my proof of employment letters with p60s and p45 is sufficient? I have applied via marriage so I need to prove the last three years. My job I left in 2016 is the one I don’t have a p60 for or payslips as everything was electronic but they sent me a proof of employment letter that I requested for my application.

The closet open centre to me under the new service is the premium one which I had to pay extra for and they do a document checkin service too. When I paid it said I would get a next day decision after biometrics.

I will also keep you posted on the timeframes just worried about the proof of living here part.

Thank you for your help!

Trishna
Hi Trishna

Please can you give us some more details on the options for the applications?

You mentioned that they give decision 24 hours after taking biometrics?!

What option is that? How much did you pay in total?

Soon I will become eligible for naturalisation, after 10 year long residency and 1 year ILR.

I was wondering if you can advise what is the quickest way to apply for the naturalisation and passport.

I believe there used to be a service offered by councils, where you could apply them both at the same time, but that option is gone.

So I want to know if there are any other fast options?!

Many thanks.
There is no "fast" option for naturalisation, no premium or same day service. Naturalisation is not an immigration application, it comes under British Nationality laws. UKVI quote a six months processing time, but it could be as little as little as one to three months. For the rest of the questions I recomment you start with the links in this topic:
british-citizenship/new-uk-visa-and-cit ... 67059.html
This is just my opinion as a member of this forum and does not constitute immigration advice.
Please do not send me private messages asking for advice - they will be ignored

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