(Applications submitted before 9th July 2012, or extension applications)
- On 9th July 2012, new rules came into force changing the spouse visa category significantly. Applicants who submitted their initial spouse visa application on or after this date must spend a full 5 years in the UK as a spouse before becoming eligible to apply for indefinite leave to remain.
- Applicants who submitted their initial applications before 9th July 2012 are subject to transitional arrangements. This means that when they apply for an extension or for indefinite leave to remain, the new rules do not apply and they can extend under the old rules that applied when they made their initial application as a partner.
- The spousal route is for partners of persons present and settled in the UK. “Present and Settled” includes people with indefinite leave to remain and British citizens.
- The applicant must be married, a civil partner or an unmarried partner of the settled person;
- In order to extend under these provisions, the applicant must have been granted leave under the rules in place before 9th July 2012. They cannot have held leave in any other category since then. If their visa expires, then the applicant must re-apply under the new rules.
Aims and purpose
- The applicant is able to continue to remain in the UK with the intention of living permanently with their partner. Having completed the probationary period, if they meet the requirements they may apply for indefinite leave to remain.
- Most people will have completed, or will soon complete 2 years in the UK as a partner. However there are some who cannot apply for ILR for certain reasons. This could be because they have not passed the Life in the UK test, or because they have a recent criminal conviction. If this is the case, they may extend under the old rules and receive a further 2 years’ leave. The Home Office would expect that the individual has an acceptable reason for not applying for ILR if otherwise eligible.
- The partner will have the right to work whilst in the UK. The couple must be fully able to maintain and accommodate themselves and the applicant will not be entitled to claim public funds.
- This route is only open to extension applications.
- The applicant must be the spouse, civil partner or unmarried partner of the settled person. All applicants must provide evidence that have lived together since they entered the UK.
- The couple must intend to live permanently together in the UK.
- They must show that they can “adequately” maintain themselves without recourse to public funds. There is no exact income level to be shown, however the applicants should show that they have income and or savings which are sufficient to meet all monthly outgoings.
- The couple must have adequate accommodation in the UK which must not be overcrowded.
- The partner will have met the A1 English language requirement in the initial application for a spouse visa and will not need to sit any further exam or test.
Applicants need to evidence they meet the requirements by providing original documents. UKVI is very strict about documentation in terms of the format and information that it contains, and whether the documents correlate with each other. In most situations, UKVI will only accept original documents. The typical documents that an applicant would need to submit might include:
- Passport (current and previous);
- Original marriage certificate;
- Original divorce certificates for previous marriages;
- Evidence of cohabitation;
- Original payslips;
- A letter from the employer;
- Original bank statements.
Period of Stay
Successful applicants will be granted further leave to remain for 2 years.
Having completed 2 years of continuous residence under this category, partners will generally qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain.
Other Useful Information
An applicant may apply for his/her dependants (children under 18) to be granted leave to remain on the basis of his/her spouse visa.
UK Work Permits Ltd offer professional, specialist assistance to individuals wishing to make spouse visa applications.
We operate on the basis of our “110% Refund Guarantee” (subject to initial assessment) and take full responsibility for the success of each application we undertake. If you are interested in making an application for this category of visa and would like further information or a free initial assessment, please contact us.