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The UK visit visa application form asks

You have said that you will be staying at these addresses in the UK. Are any of these a person's home address?

What does a person's home address mean? If a person owns more than one property and the applicant is planning to stay at the not-in-personal-use residential property of the host, how should this question be answered?

This seems to be an additional question only for child applicants. A "yes" is followed by another question asking for the telephone number and host's relationship to the applicant.

The old VAF-1 uses these words for child applications:

Is the address you will be staying at a private address?

Why do they want to know if it's a private address only for those under 18?

Collins

home address in British: the address of one's house or flat

Cambride

home address: the address of the house or apartment you live in

Edit: The question is under the heading "Private addresses in the UK." By home address do they mean residential address or a permanent address? Because the 2015 manual form uses "private address" instead of "home address." What is the new application form actually asking?

  • Which application form? – Calchas Aug 19 '17 at 19:55
  • @Gayot Fow I can't find any link for "I am not..." So is a second home a person's home address? He owns it but isn't living there. Would the answer be different if that host was not living in the UK at all? – greatone Aug 19 '17 at 21:43
  • That makes sense. So would that person be the applicant's host or sponsor if he is doing it gratis? In the "where will you stay" part, should the applicant specify the owner's name? John Doe, A street, London W1 111? How does the UKVI verify property ownership anyway, since many properties are owned by companies? – greatone Aug 19 '17 at 21:54
  • @Gayot Fow what is the purpose of asking for this specifically in the case of children? – greatone Aug 19 '17 at 22:07
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    It comes within Section 55 of the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009, which gives the Home Office a duty to safeguard and promote the welfare children when making decisions which impact on them; Every child matters: statutory guidance – Giorgio Aug 19 '17 at 22:16
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Ah, but a home isn't a house and a house is not a home.

Home: a place where a person is normally resident.

Thus, a home address is the address of a home.

None of this has anything to do with ownership.

By asking if you're staying at someone's "home address" they're asking if someone lives there permanently (regardless of whether they own the place, or whether they're there when you are).

This does bring up a question though of whether or not someone is your host if you're not staying in their home.

  • The question is under the heading "Private addresses in the UK." By home address do they mean residential address or a permanent address? Because the 2015 manual form uses "private address" instead of "home address." What is the application form actually asking? – greatone Aug 19 '17 at 21:46
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    @greatone so we're clear, can you say how you would define those differently? – Niall Aug 19 '17 at 21:49
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    A private address does not necessarily have to be the home address. I could own 10 different private residences but I would only consider one my home. – greatone Aug 19 '17 at 21:52
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    @greatone great, in addition to that a home could be a long-term stay on a hotel, which wouldn't be a private residence. So, to guess at why it was changed, I believe that they always meant "home address", but used "private address" because A: it's rarely actually used any other way in the UK, so the meaning would be clear to a brit B: it may to some seem more polite/formal. Presumably you're not the first person the be confused, so they changed the form. – Niall Aug 19 '17 at 22:04
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When it involves a child (18 years old and under), Section 55 of the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009, which gives the Home Office a duty to safeguard and promote the welfare children when making decisions which impact on them.

Every child matters: statutory guidance is explicit that each member of UKVI staff (formerly UKBA) shares that responsibility. Even when travelling with family, detailed questions can be asked, particularly when accommodation will be is a private, non-commercial residence, someone's home. Applicants may have include the host's identifying details, evidence of whether they own or lease, have sufficient/appropriate space, are permitted to have visitors etc.

Section 55 of the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009 came into force on 2 November 2009. It requires the UK Visas and Immigration to make arrangements to safeguard and promote the welfare of children in discharging its immigration, nationality and general customs functions.

All applicants who are under the age of 18 must show that:

  • they have adequate travel, reception and care arrangements for their stay in the UK;
  • they have a parent or guardian in their home country or country of habitual residence who is responsible for their care; and
  • their parent / guardian agrees to them travelling.

What are suitable travel, reception and care arrangements

This will vary from application to application and depends on whether the child is accompanied or unaccompanied. In all cases a clear record of who is responsible for the child’s welfare in their home country and whilst in the UK is imperative.

For host families the ECO needs to establish the identity and address of the hosts and must ensure that the care arrangements are satisfactory. In routine cases this could mean seeing a letter from the host family.

Proviso details must be updated to show that satisfactory care arrangements are met and to include the name, address and telephone number of the intended family / carer, as well as the parents’ contact details. Failure to ensure this information is readily available may result in a lengthy delay for the child at the port of arrival.

Child protection and duty of care is very much in the fore-front of Immigration Officers’ minds and where a child does not present any kind of paperwork concerning the care arrangements, officers will pursue enquiries as they see fit to satisfy themselves that the children are not at risk.

Note: "Proviso" refers to its internal system.

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