Hong Kong BN(O) Visa News

Statement of Changes to Immigration Rules

Thursday 14 March 2024

Changes are being made to the BN(O) route that will:

  • Enable applicants to be granted further permission to stay on the route with access to public funds where they have previously varied their permission to remove the no access to public funds condition and continue to meet the eligibility requirements to be granted access to public funds.
  • Allow decision makers to add up to 28 days of existing permission under the BN(O) route onto an applicant’s further permission to stay where the applicant has applied for a 30-month visa. This will assist them in completing a five year qualifying period required for settlement, without having to make a further temporary permission application.
  • Ensure eligible family members of an individual who holds both BN(O) status and British citizenship can apply on the BN(O) route.
  • Allow Adult Dependent Relatives on the BN(O) route to apply later to join the main applicant in the UK where there has been a change in their circumstances, and they can no longer live independently.
  • Remove the requirement for partners and adult dependent relatives to have their permission end on the same date as the main applicant where they can apply to join them later in the UK. This will allow UKVI caseworkers to grant family members the full length of permission they apply for.
  • Enable those who are on immigration bail solely because they have claimed asylum in the UK to apply on the BN(O) route.
  • These changes are coming into force on Thursday 4 April 2024.

Further information can be found on the Gov UK website.

DLUHC Announcement – BN(O) Visa Scheme 2024/25

Friday 8 March 2024

The Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC) has confirmed a further year of funding for the Hong Kong BN(O) Welcome Programme (2024/25) to support those coming to live in the UK under the BN(O) visa scheme.

The announcement includes the below: 

  • Continued funding for 12 Welcome Hubs across the UK, at the same level of £3.6 million as previous years,
  • Voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) grant funding to support projects focused on a) employability and b) mental health and wellbeing,
  • Continued demand-led funding for local authorities to provide English language and destitution support (England only),
  • Maintained funding for the current Hate Crime Reporting Service for BN(O)s and East and Southeast Asian (ESEA) communities until 31 March 2024 (a further announcement on the future provider will be made in due course),
  • Continued signposting to BN(O)s through the online Welcome Pack with information about the support and services they can access in the UK.

Further information can be found on the Gov UK page.