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How to Apply for a Spouse Visa to England

If you are a non-British national and you are married to or in a civil partnership with a British citizen or someone who has settled status in England, you may be eligible to apply for a spouse visa. This visa will allow you to live and work in England with your partner for a period of up to 30 months. Here is a guide on how to apply for a spouse visa to England.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for a spouse visa, you and your partner must meet the following criteria:

  • You must be legally married or in a civil partnership recognized by the UK government
  • Your partner must be a British citizen or have settled status in England
  • You must be able to provide evidence of your relationship, such as wedding photos, joint bank statements, and letters from family and friends
  • You and your partner must have adequate accommodation and financial support, without needing public funds
  • You must pass the Life in the UK test and demonstrate that you have a sufficient knowledge of English
Required Documentation

When you apply for a spouse visa, you will need to provide a range of documentation to support your application. This may include:

  • A valid passport or travel document
  • Evidence of your relationship with your partner, such as your marriage or civil partnership certificate
  • Evidence of your partner's British citizenship or settled status in England
  • Proof of your and your partner's financial support, such as employment contracts, payslips, and bank statements
  • Proof of adequate accommodation, such as a rental agreement or mortgage statement
  • Evidence of your English language proficiency, such as a test certificate from an approved test center
Application Process

To apply for a spouse visa, you will need to complete an online application form and pay the visa fee. You will also need to book an appointment at a visa application center in your country to provide your biometric information and have your documents reviewed.

It is important to make sure that your application is complete and accurate, as any mistakes or omissions can result in delays or even a rejection of your application. You may want to consider hiring a specialist immigration service or a lawyer to assist with the application process, especially if you have a complex case or if you are unsure of the requirements.

Timeline and Decision

Once your application is submitted, you can expect to receive a decision within 12 weeks. You may also need to attend an interview with a UK immigration official, depending on the circumstances of your case.

If your application is approved, you will receive a biometric residency permit (BRP) which will allow you to enter or re-enter England. You can use the BRP to work, study, and access public services in England.

Conclusion

Applying for a spouse visa to England can be a complex and time-consuming process, but with the right preparation and support, you can successfully reunite with your partner in the UK. Make sure to meet the eligibility criteria, provide all the required documentation, and complete the application process accurately and in a timely manner. With a spouse visa, you can enjoy a new life in England with your partner and build a future together.

Spouse visa UK
What services does CG Consulting offer?
At CG Consulting, we understand the importance of being close to loved ones and we make it our priority to maximise your chances of doing this.
Our team of specialist immigration advisers can guide you through each step of your application process for a Marriage/Spouse Visa in the UK to allow you to live in the country with your partner.

Our services include:
  • liaising with you in person, via phone or Skype at a time that suits you;
  • assessing your eligibility;
  • checking your documents to ensure that they are sufficient for your Partner Visa application;
  • ensuring that you have enough proof that your relationship is genuine;
  • preparing a Letter of Representation to accompany your application;
  • liaising with the Home Office during until your case is resolved;
  • completing each part of your application form to the highest standard.
Contact us now on +442071931110 or make an enquiry online to speak with one of our immigration lawyers about your application for a Spouse Visa UK.
Obtaining a Spouse Visa to England: A Step-by-Step Guide

If you are married to or in a civil partnership with a British citizen or someone with settled status in England, you may be eligible to apply for a spouse visa. This visa will allow you to live and work in England with your partner for a period of up to 30 months. Here is a comprehensive guide on how to obtain a spouse visa to England.

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible for a spouse visa, you must meet the following requirements:

  • You must be legally married or in a civil partnership that is recognized by the UK government
  • Your partner must be a British citizen or have settled status in England
  • You must be able to provide evidence of your relationship, such as wedding photos, joint bank statements, and letters from family and friends
  • You and your partner must have adequate accommodation and financial support, without relying on public funds
  • You must pass the Life in the UK test and demonstrate that you have a sufficient knowledge of English
Required Documentation

When applying for a spouse visa, you will need to provide a range of documentation to support your application. This may include:

  • A valid passport or travel document
  • Evidence of your relationship with your partner, such as your marriage or civil partnership certificate
  • Proof of your partner's British citizenship or settled status in England
  • Evidence of financial support, such as employment contracts, payslips, and bank statements
  • Proof of adequate accommodation, such as a rental agreement or mortgage statement
  • Evidence of your English language proficiency, such as a test certificate from an approved test center
Application Process

The application process for a spouse visa involves the following steps:

  1. Complete the online application form and pay the visa fee
  2. Book an appointment at a visa application center in your country to provide your biometric information and have your documents reviewed
  3. Wait for a decision from the UK immigration authorities, which typically takes 12 weeks
It is important to ensure that your application is complete and accurate, as any mistakes or omissions can result in delays or a rejection of your application. You may want to consider hiring a specialist immigration service or a lawyer to assist with the process, especially if you have a complex case or if you are unsure of the requirements.

Timeline and Decision

Once your application is submitted, you can expect to receive a decision within 12 weeks. In some cases, you may be required to attend an interview with a UK immigration official to discuss your case.

If your application is approved, you will receive a biometric residency permit (BRP) which will allow you to enter or re-enter England. With the BRP, you can work, study, and access public services in England.

Final Thoughts

Obtaining a spouse visa to England can be a challenging process, but with the right preparation and support, you can successfully reunite with your partner in the UK. Make sure to meet the eligibility requirements, provide all the required documentation, and complete the application process accurately and in a timely manner. With a spouse visa, you can start a new life in England with your partner and build a bright future together.

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What is a UK Spouse Visa?

A UK Spouse Visa is for non-UK residents aged 18 or over who are engaged, married to, or or has a proposed civil partner who is 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 to apply for 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, such as public funds, housing allowance or tax credits.

Who can apply for a Spouse Visa?

You can apply for a UK Spouse Visa if you are:
  • Aged 18 years or over
  • Married or in a civil partnership that is recognised by the UK
  • Married to a British citizen or UK settled person
  • You have been living together in a relationship for the past 2 years and you can prove it
  • You are engaged, or you hold a Fiance Visa UK and will get married within 6 months of being in the UK
British citizens can send the leave to remain forms on their partner's behalf as long as they are eligible. You must list their name and information as the applicant's details.
What are the requirements for a Spouse Visa?
Before you submit your application for a UK Spouse Visa, you need to:
  • Have all the required documents
  • Pass the 'Genuine Relationship Test'
  • Meet the minimum income threshold and the financial requirement
  • Demonstrate your knowledge of the English language
  • Have proof of suitable accommodation for you, your partner and any dependents
  • Get your biometrics taken to get leave to remain
  • To remain in the UK, you may also need to pass a medical test to show you don't have Tuberculosis (TB), depending on the applicant's country of residence
What is the 'Genuine Relationship Test'?
The UK Spouse Visa applicant needs to be able to prove they are in a genuine relationship, such as a civil partnership, with their British citizen partner. There are lots of different types of evidence you can send to the Home Office, such as:
  • A joint mortgage or tenancy agreement, either in the UK or outside the UK
  • Evidence of any children you have together, such as a birth certificate
  • Photographs that show you have spent time together frequently
  • A shared bank account or savings
  • Text messages or social media chat logs
  • Travel documents that prove you've visited each other at least once before you got married
  • Any documents which prove that you intend to live together in the UK
Can I renew or extend a UK Spouse Visa?
You can renew and extend your Marriage Visa for another 2 years and 6 months, as long as your current leave to rmain hasn't expired.

After you have lived in the UK for a total of 5 years, you can apply for settled status (ILR). Get in touch with our lawyers if you need to apply for a UK Spouse Visa renewal.
Can I renew or extend a UK Spouse Visa?
It usually takes between 2 to 12 weeks for a Spouse Visa case to be processed.

The Partner Visa processing time can vary depending on the documents provided and the country where the application is submitted from.

nd your Marriage Visa for another 2 years and 6 months, as long as your current leave to rmain hasn't expired.

After you have lived in the UK for a total of 5 years, you can apply for settled status (ILR). Get in touch with our lawyers if you need to apply for a UK Spouse Visa renewal.
How long does the Partner Visa process take?
It usually takes between 2 to 12 weeks for a Spouse Visa case to be processed.

The Partner Visa processing time can vary depending on the documents provided and the country where the application is submitted from.
What are the Spouse Visa financial requirements?
The UK national of the relationship is known as the sponsor and he or she is required to meet specific criteria.

First, you will need to prove that you and your partner meet the financial requirement and have enough money to support yourselves without claiming public funds.

The UK spouse 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 to meet the financial requirement. For any other children, the sponsor will need an extra £2,400 for each subsequent child.

What if I don't meet the financial requirement?

If you don't have enough money from all the listed sources of income to meet the mandatory Marriage Visa financial requirement, or you are unsure about your income, seek the advice of our specialist immigration lawyers, as exceptional circumstances may apply.
What are the Spouse Visa required documents?
Making sure you have all the correct documents to support your UK Spouse Visa application will help to ensure it is successful and prevent delays.

These are the documents you will need to send to the Home Office to get the right to remain in the UK:
  • Your original marriage or civil partnership certificate
  • Proof that you and your partner have been living together for at least the past two years
  • A valid passport to get leave to remain in the UK
  • A valid certificate to meet the English language requirement
  • Proof of accommodation
  • Proof that the relationship is genuine
  • Proof that you meet the income threshold and the financial requirement
  • Proof that you are married to a British citizen or settled person (for example, UK citizens can submit a copy of their passport)
Please note that any documents that are not in English need to be accompanied by a translated version from a professional translator. All evidence must be in the exact format required by the Home Office.
What sources of income can be included towards the Spouse Visa financial criteria?
To meet the minimum income requirement for your UK Spouse Visa application, you can use:
  • Savings over £16,000
  • Earnings from employment or self-employment
  • Maternity, paternity, adoption or sick pay
  • Pensions
  • Other income such as that generated from rent or shares
If your partner is applying from outside the UK, they can use their savings to contribute towards the total income amount – but not their earnings. Nevertheless, if your partner is working in the UK, their earnings can count towards the total amount.

You can also use a combination of savings and earnings to help you meet the minimum income threshold. However, you will need to prove you have enough financial support for the entire length of the permit.

To see how much you will need in savings, first subtract any other eligible income from your minimum requirement. Then, multiply this figure by 2.5 and add 16,000.
Can I use income from benefits for my case?
There are cases where you won't need to meet the mandatory eligibility criteria, such as if you are claiming any one of the following benefits:
  • Disability Living Allowance
  • Severe Disablement Allowance
  • Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
  • Attendance Allowance
  • Carer's Allowance
  • Personal Independence Payment
  • Armed Forces Independence Payment or Guaranteed Income Payment under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme
  • Constant Attendance Allowance, Mobility Supplement or War Disablement Pension under the War Pensions Scheme
  • Police Injury Pension
You will, however, need to prove that you have enough money to support your dependents. This is called 'adequate maintenance', and the exact amount you need will depend on your individual circumstances.

Typically, you will need at least £120 per week after you have paid for housing. If you have a child or children, this amount will increase.
How much does a UK Spouse Visa application cost?
The Home Office's current fee is of £1,523 for any application submitted from abroad. If you are submitting your application from within the UK, the cost is reduced to £1,033. This charge will increase if you are applying with dependents and will increase for each dependent.

You can only apply from inside the UK if you are not trying to enter the country as a visitor or have been given leave to stay in the UK for more than 6 months. You cannot apply for a fiance(e) permit from inside the UK.

There are additional costs related to your UK Spouse Visa application that you should consider when you send your forms. This includes:
  • Qualified translation services for your documents that are not in English or Welsh
  • An approved English test, that is a mandatory requirement for the majority of applicants
  • Additional fees for the Home Office's Priority Premium Service, if you wish to receive an answer from the UKVI within five working days
What is the Spouse Visa English Language Test?
Applicants who wish to live in the UK, need to be able to prove that they can speak English. Once you have passed an English Language Test, it will be valid for two years.

You must sit an English test in speaking and listening to get the right to remain in the UK with your UK spouse. Your qualification will be valid only if your English exam is taken through an approved Secure English Language Testing (SELT) Provider.

Currently, SELT tests for immigration purposes are only available through the Trinity College London or the IELTS (International English Language Testing System) Consortium.

You do not need an English Language test if you:
  • Are a national of a majority English speaking country
  • Are aged under 18 or over 65
  • Have a long-term physical or mental condition
  • Hold a degree or any educational establishment that was taught or researched in English. Your qualification will only be valid if confirmed by UK NARIC.
What are the UK Spouse Visa accommodation requirements?
As part of your UK Spouse Visa application, you will need to present proof of accommodation that meets UK living standards.

Your UK national partner, who acts as your sponsor, will need to show that he or she can provide adequate accommodation for themselves, the applicant and any dependents who intend to live in the UK.

For proof of accommodation, the Home Office will ask you to provide:
  • A description of the property where you intend to live with your spouse
  • Proof that there are enough rooms in the property to accommodate everyone
  • Evidence that you can afford to pay for your family's accommodation
How can I qualify for the Spouse Visa accommodation requirements?
To qualify, your property needs enough rooms to accommodate the couple and any dependents. Each person needs an individual room, however:
  • Couples can share the same bedroom
  • Living rooms can be included when counting bedrooms
  • Children under 1 do not need their own room
  • Children aged 1-9 years old count as half a person
  • Children aged 10 years or over count as an adult
  • Children aged 10 years or over of the opposite sex cannot share a room
This means that two children aged under 10 years can share one room, and babies under one year old can live in the same room as the couple.

What happens if my UK Spouse Visa application is accepted?
When your application is accepted, you will be given leave to remain, that allows you to enter the UK within a 30-day period. Upon arrival in the UK, you will have a 10-day period in which to collect a Biometric Residence Permit (BRP).

If you fail to enter the UK within this time-frame, you can submit an application for another 30-day entry permit. However, you will be charged an additional fee.
What happens if my Spouse Visa application is rejected?
If your case is rejected, you can appeal against the Home Office's verdict. This is a long-winded and challenging process that is best assisted by an immigration adviser.

IAS can assist with all aspects of your case. If you need help with your Spouse Visa appeal application, please get in touch, and our immigration specialists will be able to assist you.

We have offices located across the UK, including in London, Manchester, or Birmingham. You can also use the office finder to find the closest branch to you.
Spouse Visa appeal process
If you wish to submit a Spouse Visa appeal, you should act quickly and follow the below steps:

  1. Submit your appeal to the Immigration Asylum Chamber within 28 days of receipt of the refusal decision if overseas, or 14 days if your application was made inside the UK
  2. Ensure that your grounds for appeal are legitimate and are likely to be accepted
  3. Prepare your case to submit the strongest possible application to the Immigration Tribunal
  4. Gather the supporting documents to demonstrate why your application should be accepted
  5. Attend your hearing at the Tribunal (if relevant)
How long does the Spouse Visa appeal process take?
Unfortunately, the appeal process can be quite lengthy. Some applicants may have to wait up to 12 months or longer for a decision to be made on their appeal against a Spouse Visa refusal.

Some of the reasons for refusal include:
  • Failing to meet the financial or language requirements
  • Failure to prove that the marriage is genuine and subsisting
  • Not submitting the correct supporting documents
  • Incomplete or inaccurate application
The best way to avoid having to go through the Spouse Visa appeal process is by ensuring that your initial application is as accurate as possible.
What are the Spouse Visa UK fees?
The Home Office currently has a Spouse Visa fee of £1,523 if you submit your forms from abroad.

This charge will increase if you are applying with dependents and will increase for each dependent.

Frequently Asked Questions
If you and your partner wish to settle in the UK together, you can apply for a Fiance Visa...
A UK Spouse Visa is for non-UK residents aged 18 or over who are engaged, married to, or or has a proposed civil partner who is aged over 18 living in the UK...
EU Settlement Scheme family permit to join family in the UK
Family Visas and immigration to the UK
We provide leading UK immigration services for all purposes
If you and your partner wish to settle in the UK together, you can apply for a Fiance Visa...
The UK Spouse Visa, commonly known as a UK Marriage Visa...
EU Settlement Scheme family permit to join family in the UK
Family Visa Application
Family Visit Visa
Dependent Child Visa
UK Ancestry Visa
UK Ancestry Visa
Adult Dependent Visa
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