UK Visas and Immigration

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UK Visas and Immigration
Agency overview
Formed April 2013 (2013-04)
Employees 7,500
Minister responsible
Agency executive
  • Sarah Rapson, Director General
Parent agency Home Office
Website UK Visas and Immigration

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


The 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] 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.[3]


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 British citizenship.


  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. ^ "Heads of UKVI and HM Passport Office confirmed". Home Office. 5 March 2014. Retrieved 19 March 2014. 

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