Information on what can happen to your visa if you take a break from your studies.
Primary page content
This page is for international students and the implications around visas.
See the main page about taking an absence, which explains the process and contains the form you need to complete.
Changes due to Covid-19 (Coronavirus)
If you are considering interruption, firstly you should speak to your tutor/academic department about the possibility of interrupting your studies and ensure the relevant paperwork is completed ahead of the deadline. The Immigration Advisory Service (IAS) would write to you in advance of reporting your visa to the Home Office. When planning to resume your studies, you will need to apply again for a new Student visa.
We will need you to confirm before reporting your break in studies to the Home Office that you have or will be able to successfully leave the UK. Also if you are interrupting your studies due to Covid 19, you need to let us know this since we need to include this information when we report your change of circumstances.
If you have a Student visa, an interruption could affect your visa status in the UK.
Goldsmiths will normally notify the Home Office within 10 days of your interruption, and this could lead to your visa being cut short. The Immigration Advisory Service should normally contact you if your interruption affects your visa.
If your visa expires in more than 60 days
Your visa will normally be cancelled and your new expiry date could be 60 days after the date UKVI write to you via email.
You should assume that you have 60 days to leave the UK from the date that we write to you confirming that we will be reporting your visa to the Home Office.
If you do not receive an email from the Immigration team about your interruption within 7 days of submitting your form, you need to contact us as soon as possible.
If your visa expires in less than 60 days
UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) should let you keep your visa until it ends. You should make arrangements to leave on or before your visa expiry date if this applies to you.
The Immigration Advisory Service will write to you at the point we notify the Home Office about your interruption to let you know and so that you can make arrangements to leave the UK as soon as possible.
Resuming your studies
When you plan to return to your studies, you will need to re-apply for a new Student visa.
Do not try to use your old visa as this will have been cancelled.
You will need to request a new Confirmation of Acceptance of Studies (CAS) statement, and we will have to assess your eligibility before we can issue you with a new CAS.
Email immigration (@gold.ac.uk) about 3 months before you plan to return so that we can help you with the process.
MPhil and PhD students
Although the rules around interruptions are the same for students studying an MPhil or PhD, there are additional options available for breaks in study which do not affect your student visa:
- Annual Leave – a short break authorised by your supervisor for holidays for example (up to 8 weeks per academic year)
- Authorised Absence - a short break authorised by your supervisor for illness or bereavement for example (up to 4 consecutive weeks per academic year)
- Off-campus research - Temporary relocation to a non-UK location to conduct field research or data collection essential to your MPhil/PhD as authorised and arranged with your supervisor (3-12 month periods)