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Glossary

Welcome to the glossary section, where you can find a dictionary of all terms that commonly appear on our website. These are simple explanations, rather than complete, legal definitions. You can browse by letter or alternatively go to the advanced search anywhere on the site and search by Glossary.

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  1. A

    1. A rating

      This term is applied to a sponsor under the points-based system for coming to the United Kingdom to work, train or study. It is the rating awarded by us when a sponsor joins the register of sponsors.

    2. A-rated

      This term is applied to a sponsor under the points-based system for coming to the United Kingdom to work, train or study. It is the rating awarded by us when a sponsor joins the register of sponsors.

    3. Account management

      This is the system we use to check that organisations are complying with their sponsorship duties under the points-based system for coming to the United Kingdom to work, train or study.

    4. Account management visit

      A visit by our staff to check that an organisation is complying with sponsorship duties under the points-based system for coming to the United Kingdom to work, train or study.

    5. Account management and compliance team

      Our team of staff responsible for ensuring that organisations are complying with their obligations as sponsors under the points-based system for coming to the United Kingdom to work, train or study.

    6. Account management or compliance actions

      Action our staff will take to ensure that organisations are complying with their sponsorship duties under the points-based system for coming to the United Kingdom to work, train or study.

    7. Acquire

      Obtain or gain possession.

    8. Action or inaction

      Action is something you do. Inaction is your failure to do something. 

    9. Adopted

      An adopted child is one who has legally become the child of a parent or parents who are not the child's biological parents. To be legally recognised in the United Kingdom, the adoption must be made by order of a court or under the terms of the Hague Convention (see Hague Convention). A foreign adoption order will be recognised in the United Kingdom if it was made in a 'designated country' - a country included in the Adoption (Designation of Overseas Adoptions) Order 1973. The current list of these countries is on the Department for Children, Schools and Families website.

    10. Adoption (Designation of Overseas Adoptions) Order 1973

      A foreign adoption order will only be recognised in the United Kingdom if it was made in a 'designated country'. This means a country that is included in the Adoption (Designation of Overseas Adoptions) Order 1973. The current list of these countries can be found on the website of the Department for Children, Schools and Families.

    11. Affidavit

      A written statement signed on oath and witnessed by a qualified solicitor or notary. It is an offence to make an affidavit if you believe or know that its contents are not true. (See Notary.)

    12. Affirmation of allegiance

      An official declaration by those taking British citizenship, promising to faithfully support the British monarch. A religious 'Oath of allegiance' may be used in place of the affirmation. (See Oath of allegiance)

    13. Another relevant person

      In the context of sponsor licensing under the points-based system, this means the sponsor's (or prospective sponsor's) authorising officer, key contact or level 1 user.

    14. Application

      A formal request you make to us. For example, you may make an application for permission to stay in the UK, for British citizenship, or to be recognised as a refugee. An application will usually be in writing, using the specific application form for that type of request. Applications to be recognised as a refugee are known as asylum applications, and do not require an application form. See the Asylum section for information about this type of application.

    15. Application concluded

      This refers to applications for asylum. A successful application for asylum is concluded when the applicant is helped to build a new life in the United Kingdom.  An unsuccessful application is concluded when the applicant returns to his/her home country, either voluntarily or by enforced removal.

    16. Approved education provider

      An education provider that is approved by us and has been given a licence to bring both students to the United Kingdom under tier 4 of the points-based system. This can be as an adult (known as a general student) or child student categories, or both.

    17. Asylum

      Asylum is protection given by a country to someone who is fleeing persecution in their own country. It is given under the 1951 United Nations Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. To be recognised as a refugee, you must have left your country and be unable to go back because you have a well-founded fear of persecution.

    18. Asylum screening unit

      The asylum screening unit is a centre run by the UK Border Agency where a person is registered as an asylum applicant and begins the process of applying for asylum.

    19. Authorising officer

      The authorising officer is one of the roles required within organisations that wish to sponsor migrants under the points-based system for coming to the United Kingdom to work, train or study. The authorising officer is responsible for the activities of anyone acting on behalf of the sponsor to issue certificates of sponsorship.

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