Home Office: Passport Will be released for Most SELT Applicants
Those sitting Secure English Language Tests (SELT) can request a return of their identity documents if necessary, the Home Office has stated.
For many migrants wishing to obtain visas, proof that they are proficient English speakers is often required. For example students from outside the EU who are not from certain countries have to provide a SELT certificate as part of their study visa for the UK.
To even be able to take such a test candidates must provide proof of identity with only a passport, EU identity card and a Biometric Residence Permit accepted by SELT test. Often migrants have their identity documents held by the Home Office until a decision is made on their visa applications so cannot produce such proof.
A letter from the Home Office has stated that if an applicant has extant leave, has leave under section 3c of the Immigration Act 1971 or has permission to remain under the Free Movement Directive then the appropriate identity document should be returned to allow them to take the test.
However, if the applicant is an overstayer then the documents will not be returned. Also if an applicant has an immigration appeal in progress or on hold, then a request to return identity documents may be refused. In extreme cases where they believe the applicant may abscond and so will hold onto identity documents, these items can be scanned as proof to allow for an SELT test, the Home Office said.