Police Registration for Overseas Visitors in London

It is traditionally busy time during August-November at the Overseas Visitors Records Office (OVRO) in London which conducts police registration for those who arrive or live in London and have been required to register with the police, an essential part of the visa conditions.

If you need to register your visa or any changes of your personal details, it is advisable to plan your visit to the OVRO in advance and to come early to avoid long queues and disappointment of being asked to come on another date.

OVRO opening times:

  • Monday to Wednesday: 9am to 4pm
  • Thursday: closed
  • Friday: 9am to 4pm
  • Saturday and Sunday: closed
  • UK public holidays and bank holidays: closed

Police Registration Office Address in London:

Overseas Visitors Records Office (OVRO)

323 Borough High Street
London
SE1 1JL

Police Registration Requirement

Some migrants are required to undertake police registration after arriving in the UK with a visa, or after getting permission to stay for longer in the UK.

If you need to register, you must go to the police within 7 days of you:

  • arriving in the UK if you applied for a visa from outside the UK
  • getting your biometric residence permit if you applied to stay for longer from inside the UK

Police registration is usually needed if all of the following apply:

  • you’re 16 or older
  • your visa (or permission to stay in the UK) is for longer than 6 months
  • your nationality means you must register
  • you’re not exempt

Check if police registration is required in your case.

Police registration in case of change of personal details

If you change any of your personal or contact details whilst studying or working in London, you will have to come to the OVRO and register new details .

You must report any of the following changes:

  • change of address
  • change of college/university/work
  • change of occupation
  • change in marital status
  • new landing conditions (re-entry or extended visa)
  • new passport details
  • exemption from Police Registration

Police Registration Regulations – OVRO London

The Police Registration Certificate (PRC) may be used as an identity document in the United Kingdom (UK). You are advised not to carry it with you but keep it in a safe place together with your passport/travel document.

If you are asked to produce the PRC, you will be given 48 hours in which to do so at a police station.

Some changes must be reported to the local police stations: 

  • Any change of residential address must be reported to the nearest police station no later than 7 days of the change.
  • Any change of work address or occupation must be reported to any police station within 8 days of the change.
  • Any change of school, college or university should also be reported to any police station.

Any other changes, including change of name, nationality, passport/travel document or marital status must be reported to the OVRO office only within 8 days of the change. You must bring the appropriate documentation for examination, for example, your passport, visa, marriage certificate and/or Home Office letter.

If you have another requirement to register/report to the police endorsed in your passport/travel document or Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) at any time, you must attend the OVRO office within 7 days of re-entry into the UK or receipt of your BRP.

If you leave the UK for more than 12 months and are required to register with the police again upon your return, you will need to obtain a new PRC from this office and pay the current registration fee.

If you wish to remain in the UK after the visa in your passport/travel document has expired, an application should be made to the Home Office, supported by the appropriate documentation.

If your PRC is lost or stolen, a replacement must be obtained from this office. You will be required to pay the current registration fee for the replacement certificate. A police report is not required.

Consequences and Responsibility for Non-Compliance with Police Registration Requirements

Failure to register with police within the time specified or to comply with post registration reporting requirements, without reasonable excuse, is a criminal offence under Section 26(1) (f) of the Immigration Act 1971. If convicted, you can face a fine of up to £5,000 or you could be imprisoned for up to 6 months.

As non-compliance is a breach of a condition of leave (visa), a person may have their leave curtailed under the curtailment provisions applicable to their immigration category. Once leave has been curtailed, they will then be subject to removal from the UK.

A breach of condition can also result in the refusal of a subsequent immigration application, and for overseas and on-entry applications, a mandatory re-entry ban.

In the Home Office’s Modernised Guidance on police registration, immigration officers are advised to inform the police as soon as they become aware that a person required to register:

  • fails to register with the police; 
  • is known to have moved from, or into, their area;
  • has had changes to the conditions of their leave, or
  • becomes exempt from the requirement.

The guidance provides that where a person who has failed to register applies for leave, the application should be put on hold before it is processed. The applicant should be told they must register and then re-submit their passport and supporting documents so that the application can be processed ‘as normal’.

If the applicant still fails to register, consideration will be given to refusing future leave applications and/or to curtailing existing leave. The guidance only refers to the provisions under the Immigration Rules, Part 9 that apply when refusing or curtailing leave. But it should be noted that different refusal and/or curtailment provisions may be relevant where the person is applying for or has leave under other  immigration categories:

  • the private life provisions in the Immigration Rules, Part 7, paras 276ADE–276DH
  • Immigration Rules, Appendix Armed Forces
  • Immigration Rules, Appendix FM
  • Immigration Rules, Appendix V

For more details on the police registration procedure, fees and application forms, please visit the web-page of the Metropolitan Police. 

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