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Visa rules and responsibilities

Make sure that you understand your own responsibilities as an international student and comply with the immigration regulations during your stay in the UK in order to protect your immigration status.

Your responsibilities are to:

  • Enrol with the university within the enrolment period and turn up on the first day of your course;
  • Maintain good attendance on your course and submit your coursework on time. If you need to be away from the university at all you should discuss this with your academic school;
  • Make every effort to pass each stage of the course;
  • Pay all fees to the university on time;
  • Not interrupt, defer or withdraw from your studies at any point without first getting advice from International Student Support on the implications this might have for your immigration status;
  • Let the university know if you change your address in Cardiff. You can do this by updating your SIMS online account;
  • Keep your Biometric Residence Permit up to date and report changes to the Home Office;
  • Not allow your visa to expire if you intend to stay in the UK. Seek advice from International Student Support at least one month before your visa expiry date;
  • Make sure that you understand the working regulations during your stay.
  • Not claim “public funds” such as Child Benefit, Child Tax Credit, Working Tax Credit or any other public funds, and do not let anyone else claim them on your behalf. The UKCISA guidance on 'Welfare Benefits' has more information about public funds.

You also need to understand the university's duties as a licensed sponsor.

The university's duties are to:

  • Keep a copy of your passport, visa and/or Biometric Residence Permit. This is held by Registry;
  • Keep up to date records of your contact details;
  • Report to the Home Office if:
    • You fail to enrol within the enrolment period
    • You fail to engage with your studies
    • The university ceases to be your immigration sponsor
    • Your circumstances change, e.g. the length of your course changes or you defer, interrupt or withdraw form your studies
    • The university has evidence that you are breaking the conditions of your visa.

The university must always act responsibly in carrying out these duties. If you feel that the university has not acted responsibly then you can discuss this with an International Student Adviser or alternatively you can complain directly to the Home Office. For more information on how to do this see page 62 of the Tier 4 Policy Guidance.

Be aware of where you can go to get advice and support

The responsibilities and duties outlined here are extremely important and it is essential that you understand and comply with them.If you have any concerns about the information provided here or about immigration in general, International Student Support can give you information, advice and support.

It is advised that you read the UKCISA information on Protecting your Tier 4 status.


Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information herein, Cardiff University can accept no responsibility for errors or omissions.

Cardiff University is not responsible for the content or reliability of the linked websites and does not necessarily endorse the views expressed within.

The government makes changes to the immigration rules and procedures on a regular basis, so it is important that you check the current guidance and rules. For further information visit UKCISA and the Home Office websites.