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South Africa: Changes on visa rectifications, transfers and appeals

The latest changes on the South Africa’s changes on visa rectifications, transfers and appeals

Rectification of visas

From January 2017, South Africa Department of Home Affairs of and VFS, will only accept applications for rectification of visas on the following conditions:

  • If name on the application is incorrectly spelled or is not captured as shown by the applicant on the application form (DHA-1740 or DHA-1739).
  • If the visa category is incorrectly captured and not the same as the applied one. This is further on the terms that VFS confirms and can prove the category to the checklist is correct and the category on the label (sticker) is wrong.
  • If the reference number on the visa is incorrect and does not match with the same reference number as allocated on the application
  • If the issue and expiry date of the visa does not match the legal validity of the visa

For any visa’s that was issued by a SA mission abroad an email must be sent to Home Affairs head office to confirm the authenticity of the visa.

Visa transfers from an old to new passport

From January 2017, the Department of Home Affairs and VFS will only accept applications for visas transfers on the following conditions:

  •  If a passport is lost or stolen with a valid visa in it
  •  If a passport is damaged with a valid visa in it
  •  If a passport has no blank pages for travel purposes, VFS will need to confirm this at the time of the transfer submission.

For any visa’s that was issued by a SA mission abroad an email must be sent to Home Affairs head office to confirm the authenticity of the visa.

If a passport is expired it will no longer be accepted for application of transfers by the Home Affairs. The current visa in the expired passport will also expire along with passport. As stated by the law the validity of the passport should not be less than 30 days after the foreign national’s planned departure of South Africa. Hence any visa’s issued for any period pass the expiry date of the passport will be considered an issuing error and would be withdraw. This also means foreign nationals will no longer be able to travel with two passports.

Appeals on rejected applications

All applications reviews will need to be submitted as an appeal application in order to be reviewed and only be accepted based on the below conditions:

  • If a mistake was made by decision maker
  • If the application believes they were rejected on a wrong category
  • Where the decision maker claims documents were missing from the application, but applicant is insistent that all documents were included in the original visa application
  • The applicant considers the reason for rejection to be wrongful
  • Any other negative reason not stated on the above

The application must be submitted in person by the applicant at their nearest VFS office

More information

If you have any questions, feel free to contact our Immigration team at or call +44(0)20 8836 3359.

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