Overstay Appeals

Applications for permanent residency in South Africa are considered in terms of Section 26 (Direct Residency Permits) and Section 27 (Residency-on-Other-Grounds Permits) of the Immigration Act 2002 (Act No 13 of 2002), and read with Regulation 33 of the Immigration Regulations.

Overstay Appeals

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Unfortunately in terms of law changes in 2014, those who say in South Africa past the expiry of their visa will no longer be able to pay a fine, but shall be declared undesirable and banned from South Africa for a period of 1 to 5 years depending on the length of time overstayed.

Please note the exception to this below:

  • If you have you were awaiting the outcome of a residency application at VFS or an application for a good cause letter; and
  • If that application is rejected; and
  • You leave within 10 days of receipt of the rejection; or
  • You appeal and it is once again rejected but you leave within 10 days of receipt of the subsequent rejection; THEN
  • You will not be declared undesirable.

What to do if you are declared undesirable:

On leaving South Africa you will receive a Form 19 informing you of the matter.

This document will provide details of the offense, number of days you have overstayed and details of the ban.

You may within 10 days of receiving this form submit an appeal application to the Department. Briefly, this appeal application:

  • Is sent via email;
  • Should demonstrate good cause as to why you remained in SA past your expiry date such as:
    • A medical issue;
    • You were awaiting the outcome of an application and could wait no longer;
    • There were reasons beyond your control which prevented you from renewing your visa in time; etc;
  • Should show the prejudice you would suffer if you were not allowed to return.


You will need to remain outside of SA while the application is being processed and only on receipt of a confirmation of upliftment may you return to SA on a holiday status, or apply for a new visa from abroad.

Contact us

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64 Waterfall Avenue Craighall
+27 76 886 1181