Immigration and visas

Police registration

Student working on computer in library

Students and any dependants who are 16 and over, from certain countries or territories, who are studying in the UK for more than six months will usually be required to register with the police. Visit the government website to find out more about police registration, including who needs to register.


You should check your entry clearance vignette, Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) and the UK Visas and Immigration/Home Office decision email or letter, if you have been given the condition it should be stated in one or more of these documents.

You are required to register with the police within seven days of your arrival in the UK or within seven days of receiving your Biometric Residence Permit (BRP), if you are collecting it after you arrive in the UK. Sometimes the police will not be able to register you within this time limit due to the numbers of registrations they have to complete during peak periods, provided you have made an appointment online to register and keep it, there should not be a problem.

Where can I register?

You will need to go to a police station near to where you live, details of stations near to our campuses are below. If you are living in Essex, you must book an appointment online first. Essex Police may visit your campus at the start of the autumn and spring terms, if appointments are available on campus you will be able to select this location when you book your appointment online.

Spring term 2021/2022 - Essex Police will be visiting our Colchester and Southend Campuses during the spring term, you will need to follow the instructions and book an appointment online before you can attend. Essex Police are not able to visit our Loughton Campus. If there are no appointments available at your campus you will need to make an appointment to go to your local police station, details can be found below.

New registrations - Essex Police

To register with Essex Police you will need to first register on their website, create an account and book an appointment (scroll to the bottom of the page to start your registration process) There is a fee to register, you will need to pay this when you book online or at your appointment. There are also documents you must take with you to your appointment, to find out more about what you’ll need to take please read the Essex Police website.

Essex Police have also created this handy leaflet with a QR code (.pdf).

If you are living outside of Essex, you will need to check the government website for more information on how and where to register with your local police force.

Changes to your Police Registration Certificate and moving into Essex from elsewhere in the UK

If you have extended your immigration permission, changed your address or any other information that requires you to tell the police, you must have your Police Registration Certificate (PRC) updated within seven days of the change. If you are registered with the Essex Police you will need to login to your account online or register and create an account if you do not already have one, then you’ll be able to book an appointment to update your certificate. You should not be charged a fee.

You will need to take:

  • your Police Registration Certificate
  • proof of your student status - a Certificate of Registration can be downloaded online or you can take your CAS statement (paper or electronic).

If you don’t take your Police Registration Certificate you will have to register again and pay the fee (read the new registrations section above).

Moving to Essex - transfers from another police force

To register with Essex Police you will need to first register on their website, create an account and book an appointment (scroll to the bottom of the page to start your registration process). You should not need to pay the fee provided you take documents with you, including your current certificate. To find out more about what you’ll need to take please read the Essex Police website.

I think there is an error with my police registration condition, what should I do?

There may be situations where the Home Office finds that they have made a mistake and not given you this condition when they should have. Where this has happened the Home Office will write to notify you that you are required to register. In addition, this condition may be imposed by a Border Force Officer if the omission is picked up on your arrival in the UK.

The Home Office has made an error if you have either:

If you have been given the police registration condition in error

You can find out how to correct this error by reading the UKCISA Passport, visa and BRP problems webpage. If you decide not to request a correction of such an error, you should try to register with the police. However, it is unlikely that the police will allow you to register, in which case retain evidence that you tried to comply with this condition of your leave, even though it was given to you incorrectly (for example, you could ask the police to confirm in writing that you tried to register with them). If the police will not allow you to register, and will not confirm this in writing, you are not obliged to have this error corrected.

If you should have been given the police registration condition but it is missing

There is no need to register, or to take any action to correct the error. However, your Student Sponsor is obliged to report to the Home Office any incorrect conditions that it becomes aware of. If this happens then the Home Office may take steps to re-issue your immigration permission with the correct conditions and you would have to register with the police.

Leaving and return to the UK

If you are returning to the UK after a short period away, you must bring your Police Registration Certificate back with you and update it within seven days of your return if there are any changes. If you do not have your certificate, you will have to register again and pay the fee (read the new registrations section).

You do not need to do anything about your police registration when you leave the UK for good. However, we recommend you keep your Police Registration Certificate along with all other official documents, letters and emails from the Home Office. You may need these if you make an immigration application in the future.

Failure to register with the police

If you have been given the condition to register with the police you must do so. If you fail to register, this is a breach of your conditions and a criminal offence so could lead to prosecution. If we are your immigration sponsor, we have a duty to report breaches of your immigration conditions to the Home Office.

If you registered late with the police because they suspended police registration due to COVID-19, you will not have breached your condition.

If you have failed to register or update your certificate, please seek confidential advice immediately from SU Advice or an immigration lawyer as you may be in breach of your immigration conditions and need to take urgent action. Please do not just ignore it and hope it will be ok.

Further advice and guidance

If you want to know more about police registration please read the government guidance and UKCISA’s guidance. If you can’t find the answer to your question, you can contact the UKCISA student advice line or SU Advice.

If you have a question about registering with the Essex Police or have a problem trying to register on their website or book an appointment please contact them directly.

Police stations local to your campus

Colchester Campus

Colchester Police Station

Telephone: 101 (ext 430388)

Address: 10 Southway, Colchester CO3 3BU

Google Maps can help you with directions if you are travelling by car, public transport, on foot or by bicycle.

Southend Campus

Southend Police Station

Address: Victoria Avenue, Southend, SS2 6ES

Google Maps can help you with directions if you are travelling by car, public transport, on foot or by bicycle.

Loughton Campus

Living in Loughton (Epping Forest District)

If you live in the Epping Forest District (Loughton) you will need to register with the Essex Police.

Harlow Police Station

Telephone: 101 (ext 300027)

Address: The High, Harlow, CM20 1HG

Google Maps can help you with directions if you are travelling by car, public transport, on foot or by bicycle.

Living in London

If you live in the Metropolitan Police area (London) you will need to register at the Overseas Visitors Record Office in Borough High Street, London. Please read the information online and follow the instructions.