Married partners of UK citizens are permitted entry and residence in the nation under the terms of the UK Spouse Visa, which is recognised under the Family Visa category. On the other side, the spouse who will sponsor their partner’s visa must be settled in the UK, which necessitates that they either hold an ILR or British citizenship. If you are the UK resident’s spouse, civil partner, unmarried partner (who has been living with you for at least two years), fiancé, fiancée, or future civil partner, you are eligible to apply for the Spouse visa (will marry or enter into a civil partnership in the UK within 6 months of arrival).
Why is getting a spouse visa the quickest way to become a British citizen?
After residing in the nation for three years, you may be eligible to petition for British citizenship if you are married to a British citizen. If you entered the UK on a fiancé visa, received a further leave to remain visa (FLR), and then were granted indefinite permission to remain, you would typically be qualified to apply for British citizenship after the three-year mark. The shortest way to naturalise as a British citizen inside the UK visa system, notwithstanding the high volume of the visa applicant
How does someone with a Spouse Visa move and settle in the UK?
If you fulfil all of the Home Office criteria, the spouse visa category provides a route to permanent residency. If you wish to reside permanently in the UK as the spouse or partner of a British citizen or someone with established status in the nation, you must apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain.
You can apply for an ILR spouse visa up to 28 days before you reach the minimum 60-month mark, but you must do it before your existing spouse visa expires to avoid being deported if you overstay your welcome.
How do you move from a spouse visa to an ILR?
When you have spent five years in the UK on a spouse visa, you are eligible to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain. You are able to live and work in the UK without any time restrictions if you have the ILR status. You will also be on the path to naturalisation as a British citizen, offering you the same rights as other British citizens, if you are granted an ILR spouse visa.
You are eligible to apply for an ILR spouse visa if your current UK visa is based on you being the spouse or civil partner of a British citizen, someone who has indefinite leave to remain in the country or other documentation proving permanent residence, someone who has refugee leave, or someone who is under humanitarian protection.
Being married to, or in a civil partnership with, a British citizen or someone who has established in the UK does not guarantee the acceptance of an ILR spouse visa. Rather, each application for indefinite leave to remain will be evaluated on its own merits.
Eligibility Conditions for changing from a Spouse visa to an ILR
You and your spouse or civil partner must fulfil a number of qualifications in order to transfer your current Spouse visa to ILR. You must both be in the country to submit an application for an ILR spouse visa. Once you apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain, you should be able to show that you have been living together since your previous visa renewal and that you want to stay that way indefinitely. Or, to put it another way, you must still be wed to your husband or partner in a civil union. A residency permit, a demonstrated need for money, housing, and the English Language/Life in the UK exam criteria are among the other prerequisites.
The Residence Conditions
As the spouse or partner of a British citizen or someone who has lived in the UK for at least 60 months, you must have gained permission to stay. You can fulfil the residency requirement by using this five-year settlement path.
When determining this time, any prior duration of leave as the fiancé(e) or planned civil partner of a British citizen or someone who has established in the UK will be disregarded. Additionally, the amount of time spent with two different partners cannot be merged, and any leave granted based on a previous partner cannot be added to the current leave in order to reach the necessary five years.
Absence from the UK
There is no maximum restriction for permitted absences from the UK during the qualifying period, unlike other immigration categories that prohibit absences of more than 180 days in any 12-month period. However, excessive or protracted absences may compromise any important decision that you wish to live permanently with your husband or civil partner.
As a result, any brief time spent outside the UK must have a good purpose and be in line with the couple’s intention to settle down there permanently. This can entail travel for business or for your partner’s employment, vacations, training, or even school, but each situation will be unique.
You and your spouse must demonstrate that you two, along with any dependent children, can reach a minimum income threshold in order to fulfil the financial requirements.
For a single application, this cap is set at £18,600. You must demonstrate an additional gross yearly income of £3,800 for a single dependent child and an additional £2,400 for each subsequent child.
You must factor in your dependent children under the age of 18 when determining the minimum income requirement, even if you do not specify them in your application. However, you can meet this need by adding your yearly income to that of your spouse or partner as well as a number of other income sources. You can submit proof of savings either on its own or in conjunction with proof of income from a job.
You simply need to demonstrate that you can sufficiently support yourself and any dependents living with you without relying on public funding, or that you have enough money to shelter and support yourself, if your husband or civil partner gets a particular welfare benefit, such as Attendance Allowance.
Self-employed people who depend on their own earnings to meet their financial requirements would have to present a lot more proof.
You must demonstrate that you, your spouse, and any dependents you have will have a suitable place to live in the UK. This suggests that the space you occupy must be within your financial means and not be too crowded. Additionally, it must be housing that the family entirely owns or resides in without the aid of the government.
You can choose between purchasing and leasing real estate. You could even be staying for free, perhaps with relatives. You’ll need to demonstrate that you and your spouse have enough space in your home in any event. Any lodging that violates public health regulations or is already or will be overcrowded will not be deemed suitable.
If you are moving back to the UK from overseas and do not already own property there but plan to do so in the future, you must still show that you have a reasonable probability of obtaining suitable housing there when you arrive.
The UK’s way of life and language needs
You will be required to show that you have a sufficient understanding of both English and British culture. By doing this, you may demonstrate your commitment to the laws, values, and traditions of the UK.
Obtaining a degree or academic qualification taught or researched in English and recognised as equivalent to a UK bachelor’s degree or higher, or passing an approved English language test in speaking and listening, are two ways to show that you have sufficient English language proficiency if you are not a citizen of a country with a majority English-speaking population.
Unless you are exempt, you might additionally need to complete a “Life in the UK” test at an authorised testing facility.
How to apply for an ILR for those with spouse visas
You need to spend 60 months with leave to remain as the spouse or partner of someone who is present and settled in the UK before you can submit an online application for an ILR spouse visa under the five-year route. This application must also include your application fee and supporting documentation.
You can include your kid in your ILR spouse visa application if they are living with you and your partner, have the legal right to remain in the UK as your dependent, and are not married, in a civil partnership, or otherwise leading a separate life.
Only children under the age of 18 may be listed as dependents, unless they do not lead an independent life, for example, they have not left home, married, or given birth. They will also need to fulfil the English language and Life in the UK standards, barring special circumstances.
A lengthy list of papers is required to transition from a Spouse visa to an ILR. When applying for an ILR spouse visa, you must present a current biometric resident permit, a valid passport, or other travel papers.
The following list of documents, which is by no means exhaustive, is also required:
Any prior passports or other identification you may have held while you were in the UK
a passport or other travel document showing that your spouse or partner is lawfully resident and present in the UK.
evidence of your husband or partner’s cohabitation.
Financial proof includes things like pay stubs and bank statements.
Your “Life in the UK” exam pass certificate as well as any necessary proof of English language proficiency.
Any absences from the UK must be justified by documentation, such as a letter from your employer or the itinerary of any trips you took.
Other than that, if you include your dependents in your application, a full set of paperwork is needed for them. Additionally, you must show confirmation of their domicile and your involvement in their development.
We’re here to assist.
A Y & J Solicitors’ team of highly qualified attorneys offers Spouse visa holders who are requesting ILR status professional legal counsel and assistance. We have a proven track record of getting applications approved. Please get in touch with us if you need any more help.
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