Bermudians Without British Citizenship Passport Will Require New ID Card
Posted April 17 2015
Hamilton 16 April, 2015
As of May 31st 2015 all Bermudians wishing to travel to the United Kingdom for longer than six months who do not have a British Citizen Passport will be required to obtain a Biometric Residence Permit (BRP).
The BRP card is a credit-card sized immigration document which contains a highly secure embedded chip. Fingerprints and a digital photo within the chip contain biometrics unique to each individual. The BRP provides evidence of the holder’s immigration status in the UK. It can be used as proof of right to work, study and access public services in the UK.
As of March 18th 2015 BRPs for non-European Economic Area (EEA) nationals travelling to the UK for more than six months began to be issued in phases according to country.
“While the Bermuda public was alerted to this matter from an announcement made by the Cayman Islands, the actual roll-out/effective date for Bermuda is May 31st, 2015,” explained the Chief Immigration Officer, Dr. Danette Ming. “Under the direction of the Deputy Governor’s Office, a formal public announcement in Bermuda was on the point of issuing.”
Bermudians possessing a British Citizen Passport will not be impacted by the change.
“As before, Bermuda (BOTC) passport holders will be able to travel to the UK for up to six months without a visa but, if they want to stay longer, they need to get a BRP,” said Dr. Ming. “To completely avoid the requirement for a visa for an intended stay in the UK longer than six months, the remedy is for that person to obtain a British Citizen passport. An application for a British passport can be made online”:
• If you do not have a British Citizen passport and wish to stay in the UK for more than 6 months you should apply for a UK visa. Further advice can be found on the Visa4UK website. If your application is successful you will be issued with a vignette in your passport which is valid for 30 days from the date you indicated as your intended travel date in your visa application. The vignette is proof only of your permission to enter the UK and will allow you to travel to the UK. If you do not travel to the UK within this 30 day period, your visa will expire and you will need to apply for another 30 day visa. You will have to pay a fee for this.
• BRPs will be issued in the UK by a designated Post Office close to your intended address in the UK. You must collect your BRP within 10 days of arrival in the UK from the Post Office branch (in the UK) detailed in your decision letter. If you do not collect your BRP within 10 days of arrival in the UK you may be subject to a financial penalty or cancellation of your leave. The Post Office branch you have been allocated is linked to the postcode you submitted in your visa application.
• When you attend the Post Office branch to collect your BRP you must bring with you the passport or travel document which contains your 30 day visa. You should also bring your decision letter with you if possible as it will help the Post Office staff to locate your BRP quickly. If you do not bring your passport or travel document you will not be able to collect your BRP. Details of Post Office locations offering the service and their opening times can be found at:
For more information go to: www.gov.uk/biometric-residence-permits
How will a customer know they need a Biometric Residence Permit?
The Visa4UK website will be updated with the relevant information and guidance for customers. The GOV.UK website will be updated to reflect the changes and direct people to relevant guidance.
What will the BRP be used for and does it need to be carried at all times?
The purpose of the BRP is to evidence the holder’s immigration status. Whilst the permit does not need to be carried at all times, it will need to be produced if the person needs to demonstrate their entitlement to work or to access benefits or public services. Foreign nationals may choose to use it as a means of demonstrating their conditions and entitlements whilst living in the UK.
What happens if a customer loses their BRP in the UK?
Customers must report promptly the loss of their Biometric Residence Permit and comply with the process to replace it. All losses and thefts of BRPs must be reported to the police and the Home Office immediately. If a customer loses their BRP in the UK, they must follow the standard replacement process and pay the required fee. Further details will be available on our website at:
Can someone work in the UK before they collect their BRP?
If they need to start work before collecting their BRP, they will be able to evidence their right to work by producing the short validity (travel) vignette in their passport which they used to travel to the UK. This must still be current. In these circumstances, an employer will need to ask to see their BRP when this vignette expires.
What happens if the intended date of travel changes by the time the temporary visa has been issued?
If the short term vignette has expired or will expire before the customer travels then they will need to apply for a new short term vignette.
Will students be allowed to enrol at their institutions and commence studying before they have collected their BRP?
We strongly encourage students to collect their BRPs as soon as possible, and prior to enrolment, so that just one check of their right to study is carried out by their institution. However, if an institution wishes to allow a student to enrol before they collect their BRP, they will be able to do so providing they check that the student’s short-term vignette has not expired. The BRP will also need to be checked once it has been collected.
How quickly will an institution need to take a copy of a student’s BRP?
The institution must take a copy of the BRP when the short term vignette expires.
Can an educational establishment collect a BRP on behalf of someone under the age of 18 years?
Yes, if the young person under the age of 18 is registered as student at that particular establishment, they may make an application for authority to collect the BRP by completing the on-line form at:
What happens if there is an error on the BRP?
Any errors identified on a BRP must be promptly corrected. Customers must contact the Home Office immediately with details of the error and provide supporting documentation as required. Instructions on how to do this will be provided at the point the customer collects their BRP. In exceptional circumstances, customers may be required to provide their fingerprints again. Further details will be available on our website at:
Why do BRPs have to be collected in the UK?
Whilst it would be ideal for customers to have their BRP before they travelled this is not practical for a number of reasons which would add cost to the vignette fee and a degree of inconvenience to the customer. The customer could not travel before they had received their BRP; the specialist security printing could not be done in Entry Clearance Posts; and the cost of secure courier delivery from the UK to each customer would be prohibitively expensive. We are working closely with the education sector to ensure the process for students in collecting their BRP runs as smoothly as possible.
What happens if the customer needs to travel (out of the UK) before they have collected their BRP?
The customer can use their 30 day short validity (travel) vignette for multiple entries until it has expired, but they need to be aware that they will not be able to return to the UK once the vignette has expired and they would then have to apply for a new short validity (travel) vignette.
How can the customer change the designated Post Office?
The customer will need to contact the Post Office directly to make this request, and will have to pay a fee to the Post Office.
What happens if a customer does not collect their BRP within 10 days of arrival in the UK?
If a customer fails to collect their BRP it will be returned to the Home Office by the Post Office and the customer may be subject to sanctions such as a financial penalty or cancellation of leave. The Post Office will retain the BRP for a maximum of 60 days before it is returned to the Home Office.