If you wish to marry or enter in to a civil partnership with a British Citizen or a settled person in the United Kingdom, you must apply to enter the United Kingdom (‘UK’) on a fiancé(e) visa.
The visa requirements to be met for a fiancé(e) visa are very similar to the requirements set out within the spouse and unmarried partner visa applications.
Length of visa
A fiancé(e) visa is initially granted for 6 months to allow you to enter the UK to have a marriage ceremony or enter into a civil partnership.
Once the marriage ceremony or civil partnership has taken place, you would need to apply for Further Leave to Remain (FLR) from within the UK for a further 30 months. You are permitted to continue living in the UK whilst your application for FLR is being processed.
After 5 years of continuous residence in the UK on the basis of your marriage, you would be eligible to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (‘ILR’), otherwise known as settlement. You may eventually be eligible to apply for British Citizenship and obtain a British passport.
Key fiancé(e) visa requirements
In order to apply for a fiancé(e) visa, you would be required to satisfy the following key requirements:
- Your fiancé(e) must be a British Citizen or have Indefinite Leave to Remain (‘ILR’) in the UK
- You and your fiancé(e) must be over 18 years of age
- You and your fiancé(e) must have met in person
- Any previous relationships have broken down permanently
- You intend to marry or enter into a civil partnership within six months of your arrival in the UK
- You must be in a genuine and subsisting relationship
- You must have adequate accommodation in the UK
- Your fiancé(e) must be able to satisfy the financial requirement by earning a minimum of £18,600 gross per annum or have sufficient cash savings
- You must satisfy the English language requirement.
Intend to marry or enter into a civil partnership within 6 months
In order to get married or enter into a civil partnership in the UK, you must give at least 28 days notice at a local registry office in the UK. This can be conducted once you arrive in the UK on a fiancé(e) visa.
Must have met and be in a genuine and subsisting relationship
You would be required to provide supporting documents to establish that you have physically met your fiancé(e) in person. This could be established by providing photographs of you and your fiancé(e) together, or by providing photographs from an engagement ceremony which you may have had.
Similar to spouse visa requirements, in order to establish that your relationship is genuine and subsisting, you would be required to provide evidence of having previously lived together or confirmation of your frequent communications.
Adequate accommodation in the UK
You and your fiancé(e) must have adequate accommodation available to youin the UK without the need to rely on public funds. This may include choosing to reside at either privately owned property or a privately rented property.
Accommodation will not be adequate if:
- It is, or will be, overcrowded; or
- It contravenes public health regulations.
Should you and your fiancé(e) wish to initially reside at a family or friends address, you will be required to provide confirmation from the family member or a friend that there will be sufficient accommodation for you and your fiancé(e) to reside at their property.
Meeting the financial requirement
Your fiancé(e) who is a British Citizen or has ILR in the UK, will be required to show that he/she earns a gross annual income of £18,600, plus £3,800 for a first child (who is not British, settled or an EU national) plus £2,400 for each additional child (who is not British, settled or an EU national) that you wish to bring with you.
There are 5 ways of meeting the financial requirement:
- Income from salaried or non-salaried employment
- Non-employment income e.g. rental income or dividends from shares
- Cash savings above £16,000
- Income from a state or private pension
- Income from self-employment, e.g. as a sole trader or a director of a limited company
Financial requirement exemptions
You can be exempt from meeting the minimum income threshold if your fiancé(e) is in receipt of any of the following:
- Disability living allowance
- Severe disability allowance
- Carers allowance
- Attendance allowance
- Industrial injury disablement benefit
- Bereavement benefits
The applicant will be required to provide sufficient documents to show that he/she will be able to maintain themselves without recourse to public funds.
Meeting the English language requirement
Unless you are exempt from meeting the English language requirement, you will be required to pass a relevant English language test with at least a CEFR level A1 in speaking and listening or have a degree or academic qualification that was taught or researched in English and is recognised by UK NARIC as being equivalent to a UK bachelor’s degree or higher.
Exemptions to English language requirement:
You could be exempt from meeting the English Language requirement if you are:
- aged 65 years or over
- have a physical or mental condition that prevents you from meeting the requirement
- You are from a majority English speaking country, e.g. USA, Canada, Australia
What if the application is refused?
If your fiancé(e) visa application is refused and you feel the decision by the Entry Clearance Officer (‘ECO’) is unfair and incorrect in law, you would be entitled to a right of appeal.
If your application for a fiancé(e) visa was made out of the UK, you will have 28 days to submit the appeal.
However, if your application for a fiancé(e) visa was made within the UK, you will only have 14 days to submit the appeal.
Should the need arise, we will be able to advise you of the appeal process and represent you in preparing for the appeal.
As part of our retainer service, we offer the following:
- Provide a comprehensive document checklist;
- Assess all supporting documentation;
- Complete any application as necessary on the applicant’s behalf;
- Book the applicant’s biometrics appointment; and
- Prepare a complete bundle to be sent to UKVI
If you require further information in relation to a UK fiancé(e) visa, please feel free to contact us for a free consultation on 0161 826 6922.
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