I and an international student who has arrived in the UK and I don’t have my BRP yet. How can I open a bank account, work and rent somewhere to live?
The following information is taken from UKVI guidance and should answer all your queries:
Proving Right to Work, Rent or Status to Other Government Departments:
National Insurance Number
If customers do not have a National Insurance number, they can obtain one by contacting the Department for Work and Pensions. Further information about how to obtain a National Insurance Number can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/apply-national-insurance-number.
If customers have been granted leave in any Tier 2 category, or as a refugee, their National Insurance Number will appear in the remarks on the reverse of their BRP, so there is no need them or their employers to make a separate application to the Department for Work and Pensions to obtain one. If customers need to know their National Insurance Number before they have received their BRP, it can be obtained by contacting the Department for Work and Pensions.
Right to work
If a customer needs to prove their right to work, they should ask their employer to use the Employer Checking Service at: https://www.gov.uk/employee-immigration-employment-status. Once the request is received the Home Office will confirm their right to work directly to the employer to allow them to fulfil their statutory duties.
Right to rent
If a customer needs to prove their right to rent, they should ask their landlord to use the Landlord Checking Service at: https://eforms.homeoffice.gov.uk/outreach/lcs-application.ofml. Once the request is received the Home Office will confirm their right to rent directly to the landlord to allow them to fulfil their statutory duties.
Proving status to other Government departments
If the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), the NHS, a Local Authority or other government department wishes to confirm a customer’s status, they should contact Status Verification, Enquiries and Checking (SVEC) at the Home Office. They will know how to do this using existing arrangements.
Registering with a GP or accessing NHS services
Anyone can register with a GP surgery. Guidance on registering with a GP is available at: https://www.nhs.uk/nhs-services/gps/how-to-register-with-a-gp-surgery/
If a customer is accessing the NHS for secondary healthcare, the NHS will be able to confirm their status via established Home Office communication channels. If a customer is asked by the NHS, they can advise them that they are awaiting the delivery of their BRP. If the NHS wishes to confirm their status, they should contact Status Verification, Enquiries and Checking (SVEC) at the Home Office.
Opening a bank account
The decision to open a bank account is a commercial decision for the bank in question. The absence of a BRP should not impact a customer’s ability to open a bank account. If anyone does experience difficulties opening a High street bank, please try an online only account for the time being. The following link provides information for online only banks where they will give you a UK account but there is no requirement to provide an original BRP How To Open a UK Bank Account (Even Without Proof of Residency) (monito.com)
Education providers are reassured that they will not face non-compliance action if their students are experiencing delays in obtaining BRPs and are encouraged to allow students to continue their studies whilst they are awaiting receipt of BRPs.
Education providers are permitted to enrol students who they have sponsored, provided they are satisfied those students entered the UK during the period of their student visa. Further details can be found here.