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CAS Issued before 21st? You can apply for UK visa without IELTS.

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IELTS requirments on VFS websiteDid you get your CAS issued before the 21st of April? Finally VFS posts the news on their website confirming that students who have been issued CAS letters on or before the 20th of April can apply for their visa.

Although, this is contrary to the information VFS India gave over the phone when called on 19th & the 20th, it is a welcome news for many students who had not taken the IELTS test and has their English evaluated with alternate means.

The news also gives a link to the Secure English Language test providers, however it gives a “Page not found” error message.

So to summarise, if you CAS has been issued before the 21st of April – you can file your visa without an IELTS or any other SELT (Secure English Language Test).

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IELTS Requirement-UKBA & VFS India giving contradictory information!

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There is major confusion amongst students looking to study in private colleges over the changes in the IELTS requirement on the 21st. UKBA recently introduced controvertial changes in the regulations making IELTS exam compulsory for all students applying to private colleges.

Infact even the transitional measures (www(dot)ukba(dot)homeoffice(dot)gov(dot)uk/sitecontent/documents/news/sop4.pdf) document issued by the UKBA has various contradictions in it.

Transitional Requirements Document

Transitional Requirements Page 8

Transitions arrangement changes in English req.

Transitions arrangement changes in English req.









If you see the images above, one show that the student need to meet the requirements in force at the time of the applicatio; whereas the other talks about changes applicable for CAS issued on/after 21st.

Also, here is what the UKBA & VFS had to say when asked about these rules:

Q. If a student is issued a CAS (for a private college) before 21st of April, where his English was evealuated by means of a Skype interview, can he apply for his visa on the 21st April of after that?

A. UKBA: Yes check the last page of www(dot)ukba(dot)homeoffice(dot)gov(dot)uk/sitecontent/documents/employersandsponsors/pbsguidance/guidancefrom31mar09/sponsor-app-guidance-t4-new.pdf?view=Binary

Last Page of PBS Guidance

Last Page of PBS Guidance

However, the above page highlights requirement related to issuance of a CAS and not filing of a visa (which is the prime concern here!). So it seems that the UKBA officer has probably got it wrong here.

B. VFS India: Can’t apply. We don’t know the why’s, how’s etc. They just can’t apply.

Well if as an experience person in the overseas education industry, it is so difficult for me to get accurate information regarding the visa rules, imagine the plight of the students.

Aah! One more point I forgot to add. VFS Delhi, Chandigarh & Jullundher are not giving any appointments before the 26th of April. Good luck to the students.