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Applying for the UK Spouse Visa

Applying for the UK Spouse Visa

When applying for the UK Spouse visa, there are visa requirements you must meet and ensure that the immigration rules are met at the date of application. The UK Spouse Visa can be refused if the requirements or the evidences provided for the visa application is not provided.

Due to the current situation, with Covid-19, there are some relaxation into the immigration policy, however this is not something you should be dependent on. The UK Spouse Visa requires, by immigration policy, to have all the evidences provided at the date of application. The changes to the UK Home Office visa digital platform changes, you must ensure the correct application route is chosen.

A UK Spouse Visa is for non-UK residents aged 18 or over who are engaged, married to, or in a civil partnership with someone aged over 18 living in the UK. It is a type of settlement visa known as the UK partner visa.

The qualifying criteria vary depending on your partner’s situation. You need a UK Partner Visa if you are coming to the UK to join your partner or spouse from outside the European Economic Area.

If you hold a Spouse Visa in UK, you have the right to work like all British citizens. However, you cannot claim most benefits, housing allowance or tax credits.

What is a UK Spouse Visa?

The visa is known as a UK marriage visa, a spouse visa allows married partners of UK citizens to immigrate to the UK because they are married to someone who is ‘settled in the UK’ – i.e. a person who is ordinarily resident in the UK and has no immigration restrictions on how long they can stay in the UK.

The requirements of the UK Spouse Visa

In order to meet the requirements of the UK Spouse Visa, the following visa requirements must be met:

  • You and your spouse must be 18 years old or over.
  • You must have met each other and be legally married – this is to prevent arranged marriages.
  • You must intend to live together permanently.
  • You must have enough money to support yourselves (and any dependents) without claiming public funds.
  • Your sponsoring partner must earn more than £18,600 per year or have enough savings to be able to sponsor you. The minimum financial requirement is higher if they are also sponsoring dependant children.
  • You must have suitable accommodation for you, your spouse and any dependants.
  • You must satisfy the English language requirements.

UK Spouse Visa genuine relationship requirements

When applying for the UK Spouse Visa, the “genuine relationship test” must be met. You must have all the documents to show that the relationship is genuine and there is a intention to live together as partners.

Meeting the UK Spouse Visa financial requirements

When applying for the UK Spouse Visa, the financial requirements must be met. The financial test depends on the family members being sponsored. First, you will need to prove that you and your partner have enough money to support yourselves without claiming public funds.

The sponsor needs an income of at least £18,600 before tax if there are no dependent children.

If you have one dependent child, you will need an income of £22,400 before tax. For any other children, the sponsor will need an extra £2,400 for each subsequent child.

What if I don’t meet the financial requirements?

If you don’t have enough money from all the listed sources of income to meet the mandatory UK Spouse Visa financial conditions, or you are unsure about your income, speak to us on 0207 237 3388 or email us at info@icslegal.com.

How to apply for the UK Spouse Visa?

The UK Spouse Visa can be applied from the UK, if you hold a valid visa or outside of the UK. If you intend to apply from the UK, the visa must be valid for more than 6 months. The visa switch can be made in the UK. The new digital platform permits you to submit the application, however this can be slightly confusing on the application process.

How long does the UK Spouse Visa application take?

The average processing time for a spouse visa application is up to 12 weeks from the date we submit the application to the UK Home Office also referred as UKVI. Processing times vary depending on the country where the application is made and you should check before the application is lodged.

How long does a UK Spouse Visa last?

If applying from overseas, a spouse visa is initially issued for 33 months. If you are applying from within the UK a spouse visa is issued for a period of 30 months. In both process, you will be given a biometric residence card.

Can I extend my UK Spouse Visa?

You can apply for an extension for an additional 30 months which can take your total time in the UK on this visa up to five years. At this point you can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) provided you are still married and living in the UK with your spouse and continue to meet the maintenance requirements. After you have been granted ILR you may be eligible to apply for naturalisation as British citizen.

UK Spouse visa entry clearance

If you are seeking to enter the UK on the basis of your relationship with a UK national you must apply for entry clearance before coming to the UK. If you are applying from inside the UK you must have leave to remain in the UK on a visa that is valid for six months at the time you apply.

You cannot switch to a spouse visa if you are already in the UK and were initially admitted for a period of less than six months – for example, if you were initially admitted entry as a visitor or prospective student.

English language requirements for the UK Spouse Visa

As a spouse visa applicant you must be able to show that you can speak and understand English.

You must meet the English language requirement if:

  • You are a national of a country outside the European Economic Area and Switzerland; and
  • You are in a relationship with a British citizen or a person settled in the UK; and
  • You want to immigrate to the UK as that person’s spouse.
  • If you are not a national of a majority English-speaking country or do not have a degree taught in English then you will need to pass an English language test from an approved test provider.

If you are applying from overseas we can make arrangements for you to take an approved English language test in your home country.

UK Spouse Visa dependants

Children under 18 years of age can enter the UK as your dependants. You should make an application for them at the same time that you make your spouse visa application. Please note that your sponsoring spouse must show income of a specified amount, the level of which varies depending on the number of dependant children being sponsored.

Contact us today on 0207 237 3388 or email us on info@icslegal.com

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