Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Old Feb 20th 2019, 7:29 pm
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Default Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

I'm waiting to receive my initial spouse visa at the moment. Naturally the rate at which FLR and ILR fees are increasing is a source of much concern for me. 5 years ago, before April 2014, ILR fees were set at £1,051, but it costs £2,389 now. So it's entirely possible that it can more than double again in 5 years' time when I'll be applying for ILR, which will then be about £6,000. What scares me is that there's nothing stopping them, and I fear that we simply may not have the money to pay for it before having the luxury to debate whether it's fair. What's your views on the future fees? Is it likely that they will increase indefinitely at the speed we've seen in the last ten years? Or will a point be reached where it's deemed excessively high, making a large majority of eligible applications face threats of deportation and therefore legally or morally illegitimate?
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Old Feb 20th 2019, 7:53 pm
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Personally I think you should be more concerned about the potential inflation of the NHS access charge.
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Old Feb 20th 2019, 8:03 pm
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
Personally I think you should be more concerned about the potential inflation of the NHS access charge.
Yeh? But since they doubled it last month, wouldn't it stay the same at least for several years? Do you mean that they could introduce new fees on top of IHS?
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Old Feb 20th 2019, 8:10 pm
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Originally Posted by Bingbing25 View Post
Yeh? But since they doubled it last month, wouldn't it stay the same at least for several years? ….
Why? …. I would expect annual increases. And given the financial constraints on the NHS you could come up with a justification for just about any number you could think of. £10,000, £20,000, even more? Sure - the NHS is a financial black hole, why not?
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Old Feb 20th 2019, 8:11 pm
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

The NHS surcharge is ridiculously overpriced now
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Old Feb 20th 2019, 8:16 pm
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Originally Posted by poundworld View Post
The NHS surcharge is ridiculously overpriced now
Obviously you meant "underpriced"!

The cost to run the NHS is very high. Just because you can't afford a rolls Royce doesn't mean it's "overpriced", it just means you can't afford one.

Oh, and I just noticed your Username.
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Old Feb 20th 2019, 8:18 pm
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
Why? …. I would expect annual increases. And given the financial constraints on the NHS you could come up with a justification for just about any number you could think of. £10,000, £20,000, even more? Sure - the NHS is a financial black hole, why not?
Well the justification for introducing IHS - at least in principle - wasn't to fill in ALL the holes in NHS funds using immigrants' money, but specifically to recuperate what they supposedly lost in treating non-EU visitors and immigrants, so I don't think they can raise the fees that way. On the other hand, it seems like how much they can charge on visa fees seems to depend more on their whims.
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Old Feb 20th 2019, 8:32 pm
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Originally Posted by Bingbing25 View Post
…... On the other hand, it seems like how much they can charge on visa fees seems to depend more on their whims.
I thought that the visa fees were supposed to recoup the cost of maintaining the staff, systems and infrastructure to process visas, and therefore inflating the fees is likely subject to legal challenge if they inflated above the cost of processing visas.

Whereas the annual per capita cost of the NHS is pushing £3,000, so it should be quite easy to justify £15,000 for the first five years.
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Old Feb 20th 2019, 10:22 pm
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

I can see where you're coming from, Bingbing. It's important to plan ahead for future fee increases where we can, so your question is perfectly sensible. I think we can expect a modest fee increase every year or two on the visa processing side of things. The NHS surcharge aspect is less clear (in terms of an increase), though I'd be very surprised if it'd increase to the point where it'd become an impossible charge for immigrants to pay. After all, once you're in the country, you contribute to the NHS in exactly the same way as everyone else: adding a very large surcharge on top of that would be illogical and I doubt it'd get past various legal obstacles, including a legion of human rights lawyers.

In short, perhaps it's best to plot potential future fee increases based on previous increases. You could literally pop the last few fee increases on a graph and see how much the next increase would probably be and when it'd be likely to come into force. NHS fees? I suppose I'd plan on paying the same amount per year for the next visa application. None of us can control that, after all, so we'll just have to wait and see.

Well done for trying to plan ahead! I hope the rest of your immigration journey goes smoothly. It's certainly a vulnerable time, isn't it, in a lot of ways. Best of luck to you, truly.
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Old Feb 21st 2019, 12:19 am
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Originally Posted by poundworld View Post
The NHS surcharge is ridiculously overpriced now
It's not a NHS surcharge, NHS is the National Health Service. It's the IHS, International Health Surcharge.
Nor is it 'ridiculously overpriced'. £400 per year for full healthcare is a bargain in anyone's book.
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Old Feb 21st 2019, 12:30 am
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Originally Posted by Bingbing25 View Post
I'm waiting to receive my initial spouse visa at the moment. Naturally the rate at which FLR and ILR fees are increasing is a source of much concern for me. 5 years ago, before April 2014, ILR fees were set at £1,051, but it costs £2,389 now. So it's entirely possible that it can more than double again in 5 years' time when I'll be applying for ILR, which will then be about £6,000. What scares me is that there's nothing stopping them, and I fear that we simply may not have the money to pay for it before having the luxury to debate whether it's fair. What's your views on the future fees? Is it likely that they will increase indefinitely at the speed we've seen in the last ten years? Or will a point be reached where it's deemed excessively high, making a large majority of eligible applications face threats of deportation and therefore legally or morally illegitimate?
Getting a whole lot of guesses isn't going to advance your knowledge. No one here can predict future fees any better than you can yourself. The only thing that anyone can say with certainty is that they'll increase.

Immigration is expensive. Talk of 'unfair' and 'morally illegitimate' is useless. It is what it is, and what many people seem to miss is that it's a privilege to be admitted to a foreign country, not a right. People living in the UK on a spouse visa are free from immigration control and the associated fees after 5 years. They can naturalise as British citizens and enjoy all that this entails. If the process seems unfair, people are free to choose not to undertake it.
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Old Feb 21st 2019, 12:52 am
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

The visa fees should now only rise in line with inflation. The IHS may well increase again however.
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Old Feb 21st 2019, 8:47 am
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Originally Posted by spouse of scouse View Post

Immigration is expensive. Talk of 'unfair' and 'morally illegitimate' is useless. It is what it is, and what many people seem to miss is that it's a privilege to be admitted to a foreign country, not a right. People living in the UK on a spouse visa are free from immigration control and the associated fees after 5 years. They can naturalise as British citizens and enjoy all that this entails. If the process seems unfair, people are free to choose not to undertake it.
My point of raising the issue of legitimacy was that it'd be unfair if people who have resided in the UK legally for 5, 10, or 20 years and now are deemed eligible to receive that status as permanent resident or citizen face significant difficulties due to very high fees. In fact, some people already are struggling at £2,300. At the point where one has established one's life in the country and has nowhere really to go back, to tell them 'if the process seems unfair, you are free to choose to not to undertake it' seems a little harsh.
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Old Feb 21st 2019, 8:53 am
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Originally Posted by BritInParis View Post
The visa fees should now only rise in line with inflation.
That would make sense most, but is there evidence that that'll happen?
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Old Feb 21st 2019, 9:04 am
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Default Re: Your prognosis on future settlement fees?

Originally Posted by Bingbing25 View Post
That would make sense most, but is there evidence that that'll happen?
It was a Coalition government policy objective to make the Home Office fully self-funded by 2019/2020 hence the huge rise in fees over the past ten or so years. With the last round of minor fee increases it appears they have now achieved this goal. We’ll see what happens in April.
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