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Biometric Residence Permit (BRP)

The information in this section explains BRP rules, how a BRP card stores your personal data, and how to report a problem with your identity document.

Check to see if the new biometric residence permits apply to your situation and how to update your details if after a change in circumstances.

What Is BRP UK?

Biometric identity cards are immigration documents.

BRPs are about the same size as the new style photo-driving licence in the United Kingdom.

They store your personal information (e.g. name, gender, date of birth). A BRP identity card also contains a scanned photograph and figure prints.

The United Kingdom does not require you to make a separate application to get a BRP. It is an automatic process once a visa or immigration application gets approved.

A biometric identity card also gets issued when replacing older immigration documents. As a rule, people receive biometric residence permits if they:

  • Make an application to visit the United Kingdom for longer than 6 months.
  • Extend an existing visa to a period longer than six (6) months or apply to settle ‘permanently’ in the UK.
  • Transfer your visa from your passport or you apply for a Home Office travel document.

Information on Biometric Residence Permit

Personal data and information stored on a BRP UK includes the card holder’s:

  • Name, their date of birth, and their place of birth.
  • Scanned fingerprints and photo of their face (this is the biometric information).
  • Immigration status and any conditions attached to their stay in the United Kingdom.
  • Access to certain public funds (e.g. benefits entitlement or health services).

There may be a National Insurance number printed on the back of a BRP. But, this information is not printed on all BRPs. It usually depends on the date it got issued and the visa status of the card holder.

Using Biometric Residence Permits UK

A biometric residence card is like a passport in many ways. Thus, you can use a UK BRP as confirmation of your:

  • Identity.
  • Right to receive certain benefits or access to public services.
  • Right to work or study in the United Kingdom.

BRP Rules Help and Guidance

The GOV.UK website has guidance publications about biometric residence permits. They provide further help if you are applying from inside or outside the United Kingdom.

Biometric Residence Permit Personal Data


Scanned BRP Fingerprints and Photograph

The ‘biometric information’ stored on a BRP card contains fingerprints and a photograph. You would need to give your prints and photo as part of your visa or immigration application. To complete the process you will need to:

  1. Have your face photographed using a digital format.
  2. Place your fingers on to a glass screen to get scanned.
  3. Provide them with your signature. You must give them a valid reason if you are unable to give a signature.

As a rule, it takes less than 5 minutes to get your fingerprints and photo scanned. The modern process does not involve any ink so there should be no mess on your fingers.

There will be cases where people have a physical inability to provide fingerprints. In this situation you do not need to give fingerprints if you do not have any fingers. They will only take a digital photo of your face and note it on your records.

Note: Those who wear a head covering for religious grounds or medical reasons will not need to remove it.

UK BRP Card for Child

A parent or guardian must accompany children under 16 years old. If that is not possible then someone over 18 (with the legal responsibility) should go with the child.

The UK BRP rules do not require children to provide their signature. In some case they will not need to give their fingerprints either, if:

  • They are less than 6 years old and applying from inside the United Kingdom.
  • They are less than 5 years old and applying from outside the United Kingdom.
Where to give Biometric Information

The process used to make the visa or immigration application will determine where to go to give the biometric information. Those who apply within the United Kingdom should:

  • Go to a Post Office branch to applying by postal methods. Make sure the PO branch offers ‘Home Office biometric enrolment’.
  • Go to one of the visa premium service centres to make an application in person.
  • Note: You will need to find a visa application centre to apply from outside the United Kingdom.

Biometric Residence Permit Fee UK

As a rule, the cost of the BRP card gets included in your visa application fee. But, there will be an extra charge of £19.20 if you use a biometric Post Office branch to submit your information.



BRP Collection

There are several ways to collect a biometric residence permit. How you get your BRP depends on whether you apply for a visa or immigration inside or outside the United Kingdom.

BRP Problems

The guide lists the most common biometric residence permit problems. Check what to do if yours has not arrived and how to report a problem with a new BRP.

BRP Replacement

A guide explaining how to report a lost or a stolen biometric residence permit. Find out how to replace a BRP and the fee for replacement.

BRP Change of Circumstances

Check how to report a change of circumstances for individuals with a BRP or UK visa. There are different processes for reporting a change of address and personal details.

Biometric Residence Permit Rules in United Kingdom