When do you need one?
You need a family visa to live with a family member (i.e a spouse or partner, fiancé, fiancée or proposed civil partner, child, parent, relative who’ll provide long- term care for you) in the UK for more than 6 months.
If you intend to stay in the UK for 6 months or less you may need to apply for a Standard Visitor Visa or a Marriage Visitor Visa.
Who can apply?
You can apply as a partner or spouse, as a parent, as a child or as an adult coming to be cared for by a relative.
Who cannot apply?
- You cannot apply for a family visa if your family member is in the UK temporarily on a work or student visa. You can apply to stay with them as a dependant instead.
- You have a visitor visa or a visa for 6 months or less
- However, you might be able to switch to a family visa in the UK if you have either a 6-month family visa as a fiancé, fiancée or proposed civil partner; permission to stay in the UK for the outcome of a family court case or divorce.
APPLYING AS A PARTNER OR SPOUSE
Requirements and proof:
- Both parties need to be 18 years and over and
Your partner must be either-
- a British or Irish citizen
- Settled in UK- indefinite leave to remain, settled status or proof of permanent residence
- Be from the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein and have pre settled status
- Have a Turkish Businessperson Visa or Turkish Worker Visa or
- Have refugee status or humanitarian protection in the UK
- Both parties must intend to live together permanently in the UK after you apply
- You are in a civil partnership or marriage that’s recognised in the UK
- you’ve been living together in a relationship for at least 2 years when you apply
- you are a fiancé, fiancée or proposed civil partner and will marry or enter into a civil partnership in the UK within 6 months of arriving
- have a good knowledge of English which is proved by either having an academic qualification- a degree or academic qualification that was taught or researched in English; if the qualification is from a UK university you only need the degree; if the qualification is from outside the UK you’ll need to provide a certificate from UK NARIC or by taking an approved English language test with at least CEFR level A1 in speaking and listening, subject to certain exception such as (i) If you cannot take an English language test because of coronavirus (COVID-19), (ii) If you a National of one of the following countries:- Antigua and Barbuda, Australia, the Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Canada, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Malta, New Zealand, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, USA.
- can financially support yourself and your dependants as evidenced by your proof of income as per the minimum income requirement that is you and your partner must have a combined income of at least £18,600 a year or savings and you must prove you have extra money if you have children who are not British or Irish citizens or do not have pre-settled status or who are not permanently settled in the UK or do not have permanent residence status or document.
If you’re applying as a fiancé, fiancée or proposed civil partner
You must prove that:
- any previous marriages or civil partnerships have ended
- you plan to marry or become civil partners within 6 months of arriving in the UK
If you do not meet these requirements you may still be able to apply for a visa or extend your permission to stay if:
- you have a child in the UK who is a British or Irish citizen or has lived in the UK for 7 years and it would be unreasonable for them to leave the UK
- there would be very significant difficulties for you and your partner if you lived together as a couple outside the UK that could not be overcome
- it would breach your human rights to stop you coming to the UK or make you leave
How much it costs depends on how you apply, where you apply, are you applying only for your spouse or partner or are you adding dependents.
- If the application is made within the UK it would cost £1033 and if made outside the UK the cost would be £1523
- For each dependent added to the application made outside the UK it would cost £1523 per person and for applications made within the UK it would cost £1033 per person.
- The cost of an adult who needs to be looked after by a relative applying outside the UK would be £3250 and an application made within the UK would cost £1033.
- To extend or switch your visa it would cost you £19.29 to have you biometric information (fingerprints and a photo) taken.
- To get a faster decision on your application you maybe be able to pay an extra £800 for super priority service.
If you cannot pay the fee you can fill in the online fee waiver request form subject to its prerequisites being met.
Time of decision
- If you have applied outside the UK it will usually take 12 weeks and if you have applied within the UK it will usually take 8 weeks.
- If you have opted for the super priority service a decision will be made within 2 working days depending on whether your appointment was on a weekend or a weekday.
- A decision on your application might take longer if you do not meet the minimum income requirement or cannot prove your knowledge of English or need to attend an interview or have not provided all the relevant documents or have a criminal conviction or another personal circumstance that needs to be reviewed.
Duration of Stay
On this Visa you can stay in the UK for 2 years and 9 months. If you’re applying as a fiancé, fiancée or proposed civil partner, you can stay for 6 months. If you extend your family visa or switch to this visa you can stay in the UK for 2 years and 6 months.
Other Information you must provide
You’ll need to have information and some evidence ready when you make your application such as your names, email address, dates of birth, passports and ID’s, visa entry stamps, biometric residence permits, previous immigration details, national insurance number, nationality, right to be in the UK, certified translation of any document not in English or Welsh, medical tests if required, evidence of marriage subsisting or ending, anyone your partner supports with money, proof of current relationship, proof of previous partners if any, details of children if any and details of the countries you’ve lived in and visited outside the UK, family and friends in the countries where you were born or have nationality, Proof of income by bank statements or 6 months of payslips or a letter from an employer, dated and on headed paper confirming the relevant required details.
Post application procedure
After you apply you’ll need to attend an appointment to provide your biometric information (fingerprints and a photo). If your application is approved you will get a biometric residence permit which enables you to work and study in the UK. However you cannot work or study if you’re applying for a visa or extending your stay to get married or become civil partners, you are also not usually entitled to benefits or other public funds for you and your dependents until you are eligible.
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