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Passports and visas: lost, stolen or getting a new one

What do I do if my passport is going to expire in the UK?

You can apply for a new passport through your embassy in London. 

The Foreign & Commonwealth Office list the addresses and contact details for all embassies in the UK on their website:

embassies in the UK

You must do this before your old passport expires.  When you obtain a new one, you must bring it to the Student Services Centre for registry to update your student record.

If your visa is a sticker in your passport, you will need to carry both passports when travelling.   

If your visa is a BRP (Biometric Residence Permit), you will need to carry both passports and your BRP when travelling.

If your old passport was retained by your embassy you will need to apply to get your old visa transferred.  You must do this even if your visa is a BRP (as this lists your passport number).  See the guidance below (under Step 3 for what to do if you lose your passport in the UK.)

What do I do if my passport/BRP* was lost/stolen in the UK?

* BRP = Biometric Residence Permit (ID card)

Step 1

Report it to the police. You can do this at your local police station in the UK

Find your local police station in London|

or you may be able to report this online

Reporting crime online|

You will get a crime reference number. This is an important document. You may need this to get a new passport and you will need it to obtain new student immigration permission.

Step 2

Apply for a new passport at your embassy.  The Foreign & Commonwealth Office list the addresses and contact details for all embassies in the UK on their website:

embassies in the UK|

If you have also lost your BRP  you must apply for a new one within three months so even if you have not yet obtained a new passport, you must apply for a new BRP card within three months.  You will need to enclose a letter explaining why you are not able to enclose your passport and explain when you expect to receive it.  See below for details on how to apply for a new BRP card.

Step 3

If your student visa was in the form of a sticker in your passport, you need to apply to transfer your old visa into your new passport. If your visa was in the form of a BRP card you need to apply for a new card. The application processes are different. See below.

Replace a sticker in your passport

To replace the visa in your passport, you need to fill out an application form - the Transfer of Conditions 'TOC' form and pay an application fee. As part of this application you will need to provide your biometric information and obtain a new BRP card. Postal applications cost £147 and can take several months to be processed. If you apply in person, you can get your passport back on the same day and your BRP card will be posted to you within a few weeks. In person applications cost £661.

You can download the application form and guidance from the

Home Office website - Transfer of Conditions|

Replace a lost BRP in the UK

If your visa was in the form of a ICFN (Identity Card for Foreign Nationals) or BRP (Biometric Residence Permit), you need to call the Home Office to cancel it. 

If you are in the UK, call 0300 123 2412

You must apply for a new card within three months or you may have to pay a fine of up to £1000 or your visa could be curtailed. Apply on application form BRP (RC) to obtain a replacement BRP card. This currently costs £37 and you can only apply by post. 
You can download this from:

Home Office website|

What to do if your visa is about to expire

If your immigration permission was about to expire (within 4 weeks of you losing your passport or ID card)  you don't need to apply on TOC or on the BRP (RC) form and you can make a new application to extend your stay in the UK.

For guidance go to:

Applying for a Tier 4 visa in the UK|

What do I do if my passport/BRP card was lost/stolen outside the UK?

Step 1

Report your passport and/or BRP lost or stolen to the local police and obtain a police report.  You may need this to apply for a new passport and you will need this to apply for a replacement visa.

If your visa was in the form of a sticker in your passport you will need to apply for permission to return to the UK

Step 2

Contact your embassy to obtain a temporary passport to return to the UK.  Embassies have different processes to enable you to travel so contact your embassy to find out what you need to do.

Step 3

Apply for permission to return to the UK. What you need to do depends on whether your visa was a sticker in your passport or a BRP card.

Replace a sticker in your passport

You will need to complete the replacement vignette application form and apply again for permission to return to the UK in the same way that you applied for a visa to come to the UK. You will have to pay the full application fee but you do not need a new CAS.  You may need to show that you are still a student at LSE.  Ideally this will be an original letter from LSE or you can print off your certificate of registration from LSE For You. You can read the internal guidance on the Home Office website:

Home Office Entry Clearance Guidance Basics|

 You will need your police report and evidence that you are still a LSE student.

Overseas Application form guidance|

Replace a lost BRP

If you are outside the UK, call (+44) 208 527 3623  immediately.  Your card will be cancelled and you will need to apply for permission to enter the UK by completing the replacement vignette application form and applying at the British Embassy.  Check details about how to do this at:

Home Office Applying for a Replacement BRP|

When you return to the UK, you will then need to apply for a replacement BRP. See the information about about how to do this.

Step 4

When you return to the UK with a new passport and/or BRP card bring this to the Student Services Centre for registry to update your student record.

Returning to the UK without new immigration permission

Some LSE students have managed to make arrangements with the Home Office and the airline to travel back to the UK with a new passport but without applying for permission to enter the UK.  This has been easier for students with BRPs or for students who have evidence of their previous permission (for example a photocopy of the sticker in the passport or the BRP).  Contact the airline to find out if this is possible in your case.  We advise you not to return to the UK unless you have made special arrangements  to do so.

Help from LSE

If you are stuck overseas and have lost your passport or BRP and are not sure what to do, contact us using our webform and mark your message as urgent. 

ISIS Web Query form|

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