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What do you need to know about Spouse and Marriage Visas?

It is such an exciting time when you have met the one you love and you want to live together as husband and wife or civil partner.

We have help hundreds or couples of all different nationalities apply for a UK spouse visa or leave to remain from within the UK. We have seen many changes to legislation covering the spouse visa, so whether you are applying from with the UK or outside of the UK, contact us for legal advice today.

Legal guidance at a glance:

  • Advise on Spouse visa rights
  • Assessment of Spouse Visa
  • Documents for Spouse Visa
  • Assessment for Marriage Visit
  • Assessment on Finanicial Threshold  
  • Prepare your Naturalisation Application
  • Keep you informed of all developments

What is a Spouse Visa?

Spouse visa applications are visas which the Home Office will approve under the 2.5-year route or the 5-year route into the UK as a partner, of a settled or British National.

Spouse Visa Legal Support by us

Spouse visa support in Kent is very difficult to find, we offer all clients free legal advice when you register online for our legal advice. You may have already applied for this visa and have been refused, or you are of the view that perhaps you have not met all of the legal requirements? We are able to offer you direct and invaluable advice to ensure that your application is considered positively.

Our Kent legal spouse consultation can be provided on the phone, or you are able to book for an appointment that is chargeable at the hourly rate of £180 depending upon availability.

London spouse applications and legal support are also available for you today, regardless of distance. You will be in a position to have the same legal Immigration Advisor to assess, advice and legal representation your case before the Home Office. Our Immigration Advisor can book an appointment to assess your spouse application also in London subject to availability.

Spouse Application Clients requiring London legal support can email now for an appointment in London here.

Kent Spouse Application clients are able to also book appointments which are subject to availability, please always contact the office to ensure that we have arranged your appointment if the matter is urgent.

As your instructed Spouse Application Immigration advisor, you are given 1 to 1 guidance, and timely support on all the evidence required for your application. There may be times when you require our urgent communication because you have faced difficulties in understanding the spouse application legal requirements; your Immigration Advisor is happy to spend time ensuring that no complicated or technical element of the legal requirements is unexplained.

Spouse entry suitability test may be a reason why you may be refused entry, as outlined under the Immigration Rules Appendix FM: family members; Section EC-P: Entry clearance as a partner.

Have you been refused spouse entry because:-

S-EC.1.2. The Secretary of State has personally directed that the exclusion of the applicant from the UK is conducive to the public good.

S-EC.1.3. The applicant is currently the subject of a deportation order.

S-EC.1.4. The exclusion of the applicant from the UK is conducive to the public good because they have:

  1. (a) been convicted of an offence for which they have been sentenced to a period of imprisonment of at least 4 years; or
  2. (b) been convicted of an offence for which they have been sentenced to a period of imprisonment of at least 12 months but less than 4 years unless a period of 10 years has passed since the end of the sentence; or
  3. (c) been convicted of an offence for which they have been sentenced to a period of imprisonment of less than 12 months unless a period of 5 years has passed since the end of the sentence.

S-EC.1.5. The exclusion of the applicant from the UK is conducive to the public good because, for example, the applicant’s conduct (including convictions which do not fall within paragraph S-EC.1.4.), character, associations, or other reasons, make it undesirable to grant them entry clearance.

S-EC.1.6. The applicant has failed without reasonable excuse to comply with a requirement to-

  1. (a) attend an interview;
  2. (b) provide information;
  3. (c) provide physical data; or
  4. (d) undergo a medical examination or provide a medical report

What does a Spouse Visa look like?

spouse visa sample

What does a Settlement Biometric Card look like?

Settlement Biometric Card

Spouse/Marriage Visa FAQs

Spouse applications to the UK undergo in-depth scrutiny by the Home Office, guidance on how to avoid a Home Office refusal is becoming, challenging. Here are some key common UK Spouse Visa Application questions I’m often asked;

If you’re already in the UK, your spouse (husband, wife or civil partner) or fiancé will need a visa to join you to live for over 6 months, this used to be called a marriage visa.

A spouse travelling from a visa required country will require a Family visit visa and as a spouse, you must demonstrate that you are visiting a close relative or partner, otherwise, if you are refused entry. A spouse can visit their partner on a visit visa, and their stay must not exceed over 180 days, to be allowed future visits. However, if you are travelling from a non-visa required country, you must be in a position to satisfy the Immigration Authorities at UK Border-Control that you have the intention to overstay in the UK.

You cannot stay more than 180 days outside of the UK in any one consecutive year of your visa period. However, if you are on tour with your British Partner, the Home Office may still consider your settlement application, subject to evidence you supply justifying your absence from the UK for more than 180 days, please read my blog on “spouse time-lapse”.

Documents for the spouse visa must be originals or certified as true copies, to include Proof of Marriage, English Language Certificate, TB Medical Certificate, Financial Documents, Children’s Birth Certificates, Evidence of Communication, UK Accommodation. These documents must be sent to the UK Settlement Department to the Home Office, if you are applying from overseas, these are some of the main documents for the application, each is different and may require additional ones.

Status Solutions UK has an experienced spouse visa application OISC Advisor; available to prepare, submit your application and represent you at the Home Office. You are advised to take legal representation especially if your application has been refused before. Our fees are fixed and are between £160 to £2,000. Your fee will never be higher than fees agreed unless circumstances beyond your control or additional information come to light not disclosed at the point of instruction.

The income threshold is defined in Appendix FM X 2018 guidance notes, the calculation is subject to whether non-British children are to be included in the application, the starting figure the British Sponsor must meet is £18,600, evidenced in salary slips, bank statements, either for the last 6 months or 12 months depending which category you come under. Similar questions raised have been “How much do I need to earn to apply for a spouse visa? How much do I need to earn to apply for a spouse visa? How much do I need to earn to sponsor my spouse UK? Or What is the financial requirement for a spouse visa in the UK”?

If you are applying from your country of origin then you must apply using the Visa4UK, should you be eligible to apply from the UK, you must apply using the Gov.UK services, and send all your supporting documents to the Home Office. We have acted for clients that have been refused entry owing to the wrong or incomplete documents sent to the Home Office, or the wrong financial evidence if you have experienced a refusal, please do not hesitate to contact us for professional immigration legal advice today.

If you are living in the UK on the basis of a Spouse visa, you must hold a Biometric card which will display the date you were allowed to stay in the UK. The Biometric Card will also show the date your permission to live in the UK will end. You must submit an application to extend your stay in the UK no later than 28 days from when your permission is about to expire. If your permission to live in the UK has expired you must take legal advice urgently, to ensure that your rights to stay are protected under Article 8; the right to private family life. Similar questions raised are “How do I extend my spouse visa in the UK?” or “When can I apply for spouse visa extension UK? Can I extend my spouse visa in the UK? Or how long before the spouse visa expires can I renew my spouse visa in the UK?” my response will still be the same

Spouse visa extension documents include similar documents from the first application, using combined income from sponsor and applicant only from the UK, together with a new English Language certificate B2 and the Life in the UK Test Certificate. There are additional legal requirements relating to evidence that you both have lived together during the foreign spouses stay in the UK. Similar questions raised have been; “which documents do I need to extend my spouse visa in the  UK? Or What documents do I need to apply for a spouse visa in the UK? Or, what documents do I need for a spouse visa in the UK?

The Home Office can take any time from 30 days to 12 weeks to give a decision on a Spouse application. If you have been refused a spouse visa before, you should not pay for the superior service, as it is unlikely that you will be granted a decision within the priority service. The Home Office offers a Standard Service or a Priority Service, however, your supporting documents are assessed in the UK. The Home Office is likely to spend more time assessing documents and responses you have given to resolve the previous grounds of refusal.

Your Spouse visa refused on self-employed income is very common, you ought to consider taking legal advice if this has occurred with your application. Generally speaking, a Sponsor can supply income from self-employment.

This is income that you have paid income tax, with supporting bank statements showing that the income was received in your personal account. Spouse visa refused self-employed would mainly consist of lack of clarity on income in your account, no evidence on income received, business bank statements not originals, a discrepancy in figures relied upon, reliance on savings, and mainly a failure to explain how the income was generated. Seeking legal representation at the point of refusal if refused spouse visa on self-employed is recommended.

Spouse visa rejected due to salary slips is quite common, your sponsor must ensure that the salary slips are either originals or certified as “true copies of the original”. You may wish to supply more than 6 months’ payslips, depending upon the Sponsor’s employment history and terms of employment. Your sponsor may work on a zero-hour contract or may have an old contract which does not define hours of work or play! The Home Office will only assess the information supplied and not assume your pay of hours of work, you must ensure that the terms of your sponsor’s employment are defined to demonstrate his or her income. If you are unsure of the documents to be supplied seek legal guidance.

This is income that you have paid income tax, with supporting bank statements showing that the income was received in your personal account. Spouse visa refused self-employed would mainly consist of lack of clarity on income in your account, no evidence on income received, business bank statements not originals, a discrepancy in figures relied upon, reliance on savings, and mainly a failure to explain how the income was generated. Seeking legal representation at the point of refusal if refused spouse visa on self-employed is recommended.

You can marry in the UK as a foreign national, the law changed in 2017.

However, if your boyfriend has entered the UK as a visitor usually for a limited period of 6 months the Home Office will refuse your Marriage Leave to remain application. We can give your legal representation if your marriage visa or leave to remain has been refused, book a free consultation now.

Yes, you must prove that the child in question is your dependent child, this usually requires evidence of the child’s birth certificate and, evidence of maintenance, and detailed evidence of regular communications, in support of the child’s application, which is submitted with the mother’s the traveling applicant spouse for the purposes of settlement. The Home Office is unlikely to consider a settlement application for children that are not settling in the UK at the same time.
  1. (c) the requirements in paragraph E-ECC.2.3. being met.
  2. In this paragraph, “child” means the applicant and any other dependent child of the applicant’s parent or the applicant’s parent’s partner who is-
    1. (a) under the age of 18 years, or who was under the age of 18 years when they were first granted entry under this route;
    2. (b) applying for entry clearance as a dependant of the applicant’s parent or of the applicant’s parent’s partner, or is in the UK with leave as their dependant;
    3. (c) not a British Citizen or settled in the UK; and
    4. (d) not an EEA national with a right to be admitted to or reside in the UK under the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016.
For further guidance on child applications, contact us today.

Yes, if you are over 18, Your partner must also either:

  • be a British citizen
  • have settled in the UK (they have ‘indefinite leave to remain’ or proof of permanent residence)
  • have refugee status or humanitarian protection in the UK

You and your partner must intend to live together permanently in the UK after you apply.

A British citizen wanting to return home or living in the UK (with a spouse) must be able to prove an annual income of £18,600 or have cash savings of at least £62,500. Throw in a child and then the income threshold goes up by another £3,800. Additional children increase the figure by £2,400 each.

Civil partnership status, a same-sex relationship, however, is not limited to those who enter into a British civil partnership in the UK or at one of the British Embassies abroad which conducts ceremonies. Applications can also be made based on certain overseas relationships which are recognised as being civil partnerships under British law. These relationships are listed in Schedule 20 of the Civil Partnership Act 2004 but a more detailed (unofficial) list can be found in Wikipedia’s Schedule 20 page. Even if a relationship does not appear in the current or future Schedule 20, it may be acceptable if it meets the general conditions in section 214 of the CPA.

If you are in an overseas relationship which has been recognised in the law of that country (or region of that country), you can check with the Home Office contact centre whether your relationship is considered equivalent to a UK civil partnership.

Yes, however, this will depend upon your current immigration status.
Yes, The General Requirements have been amended to require the decision-maker to consider whether the Minimum Income Rule can be met from other sources of income, financial support or funds as set out in the new paragraph 21A of Appendix FM-SE. It must now be evident from the information provided in the application that there are (using the infamous phrase) ‘exceptional circumstances’ which could render the refusal of the application a breach of Article 8 because it could result in unjustifiably harsh consequences for the applicant, the partner or a child under the age of 18 years old if the other sources of income are not considered. The Home Office considers this to bring the test of proportionality under Article 8 into the Rules and the Rules, she says, are now a complete framework for her consideration of Article 8 grounds under Appendix FM (On 22 February 2017 the Supreme Court in MM (Lebanon) & Others [2017] UKSC 10 … following categories of Appendix Armed Forces unless otherwise stated in that).

Although, because of a disability, you may be exempt from meeting the current income threshold, the sponsor will need to prove that they can adequately maintain the foreign spouse or partner they are bringing to the UK and any dependants. Where the UK partner is in receipt of any of the following in the UK, the applicant will meet the financial requirement so long as they can provide evidence of ‘adequate maintenance’ as opposed to meeting the financial threshold:

  • Carer’s Allowance
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Personal Independence Payment
  • Severe Disablement Allowance
  • Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Armed Forces Independence Payment
  • Guaranteed Income Payment
  • Constant Attendance Allowance, Mobility Supplement or War Disablement Pension

You must provide proof of receipt of this benefit in the form of:

(a) Official documentation from the Department for Work and Pensions or the Veterans Agency, that confirms current entitlement and the amount being received.

(b) A bank statement issued in the last 12-months prior to the application demonstrating payment of the benefit or allowance into the account.

It is not necessary to prove that the applicant meets the minimum financial threshold. However, you will be required to demonstrate that the applicant can be supported without recourse to further public funds.

Paragraph 6 of the Immigration Rules sets out the definition of ‘adequate’ and ‘adequately’ that must be applied in all cases in relation to a maintenance and accommodation requirement:

“Adequate” and “adequately” in relation to a maintenance and accommodation requirement shall mean that, after income tax, National Insurance contributions and housing costs have been deducted, there must be available to the family the level of income that would be available to them if the family was in receipt of Income Support.

To understand if you qualify for British Citizenship, you should contact us today on 01634 828288.

Read our reviews on Shabana Shahab, who will be your lead consultant, her wealth of experience and client management skills is a reflection of why many spouse cases, have been successfully managed before the Home Office.

Status Solutions UK
Ranked 4th out of 162 UK Immigration and Nationality Lawyers
I have to consult Shabana for my visa ILR and my case was slightly complex but I am so greatful to her and her wonderful team who made the whole process look so easy and smooth. She is extremely thorough, very organized and always available on just a phone call. I got my ILR within 3 days of application and that’s her brilliant work. Highly recommend anyone who wants to get tension free for their visas processes and get it done quickly and smoothly Thanks Shabana !:).A very happy customer .
Huma Sheikh - 13 Jan 2020
What an amazing team. From day 1 when we entered Shabana office 8 years we have had nothing but amazing service they helped with our Tier 2 application and now our Leave to Remain. And our situation from day 1 has been complicated. The patience and calm manner that our panic phone calls were dealt with. And thankfully I can say to this amazing team our Leave to Remain has now been granted. So would highly recommend there services.
Yvonne Da Silva - 23 Oct 2019
Status Solutions - Nothing to fault, has helped myself and family on a number of occasions, which has never been straight forward cases. Very grateful for all the time and effort put into our leave to remain which has been granted. Can honestly say I recommend Shabana and the team.
Tracey-Anne Da Silva - 23 Oct 2019
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