Navigating the UK Spouse Visa Application Process

UK Spouse Visa Application Process - UK Immigration Solicitors

Do you want to apply for a spouse visa but don’t know the application process? Then, this guide is for you. We will discuss the UK Spouse Visa application process and the requirements to fulfil to apply for a Spouse Visa. It seems very daunting to complete a bundle of documents to make your Spouse’s Visa application successful. But with the help of expert solicitors, you can make this process easy and seamless. Professional help is just a few clicks away contact us now. 

Before delving into the detailed UK Visa process, first, you must know what a Spouse Visa is. 

What is a UK Spouse Visa?

A spouse visa, sometimes called a partner or spouse visa, allows a foreign national to live with their partner in the United Kingdom if their partner is a British citizen or a settled person (such as someone with Indefinite Leave to Remain or EU Settled Status). Marriage to a British citizen does not provide you automatic residency rights in the UK. To reside in the United Kingdom with a spouse, you need a Spouse Visa. Moreover, to apply, you must be either married, in a civil union, or single.

Here is a detailed explanation of the eligibility requirements that applicants must fulfil. Upon approval, the immigration authorities issue a partner and spouse visa for an initial period of 2 years and 9 months. You can then apply to extend your stay and eventually get ILR, which will let you stay in the UK permanently without having to worry about immigration regulations. You may be able to seek British citizenship through marriage after obtaining ILR.

What are the Spouse Visa Requirements?

Here are a few requirements that you must fulfil before submitting a UK spouse visa application.

Required documents

You must have all the required documents that will help you to support your spouse’s visa application. To obtain the right to stay in the UK, you have to submit the following documents to the Home Office:

  • A certified copy of your marriage certificate for visa
  • Proof that you and your partner have lived together for at least the last two years
  • To obtain a visa to reside in the United Kingdom, you need to have a valid passport.
  • An official document proving proficiency in English
  • Proof of the sincerity of the relationship
  • Proof of your income and ability to pay the fees
  • Evidence of accommodation
  • Proof of marriage to a British citizen or settled person (e.g., UK citizens can submit a copy of their passport)

Genuine Relationship Test

To obtain a UK Spouse Visa, the applicant must provide proof of their legal marriage to a British citizen for the visa application. The Home Office accepts a wide variety of evidence types, including:

  • A tenancy or shared mortgage agreement, either within or outside of the UK
  • Obtaining a birth certificate or other legal documentation of any children you may have as a couple
  • Photos that show how often you’ve spent time together
  • A joint savings or bank account
  • Communication records via social media or text messaging
  • Legal proof showing the two of you had travelled together at least once before your marriage
  • Proof of your intention to live together in the UK, in the form of official documents

Financial Threshold for UK Visa

The sponsor of the relationship is the UK national, and he or she must meet certain criteria.

You and your spouse or partner must first demonstrate that you are financially stable and able to maintain yourselves independently, without having to public assistance. When there are no children living at home, the non-resident spouse must have a pre-tax income of £18,600.

To meet the financial criterion when having one dependent child, you need an additional £3,800 (before taxes). The sponsor must contribute an extra £2,400 for each additional child.

Accommodation Requirements

Applicants must provide evidence of having enough housing in the UK, including:

  • Only the applicant and their immediate family live there or own it.
  • Enough room for a comfortable lifestyle
  • Fully satisfies all relevant public health requirements

UK Spouse Visa Application Process

Applications for UK Partner Visas, whether for Fiancés, Proposed Civil couples, or unmarried couples, must be submitted online through the GOV.UK website. The general steps included in the UK Spouse Visa application process are:

  • Fill Out the Application Forms 
  • Submit your application and make the necessary payment.
  • Schedule your Biometric Appointment.
  • Attend your biometric appointment and bring the necessary supporting documents with you.
  • Receiving a decision on your visa application

Fill out the Application Forms

You must answer each set of questions on every page of the application in full before progressing to the next.

A lot of the information is already there, and if you get confused or need more time to collect the answers, you can simply save your progress and return to the form later. (While registering, you’ll be prompted to enter your email address and create a password. Your application can be resumed whenever you log in or sign out).  You have a full 10 weeks to return to this form and finish it whenever it is most convenient for you because your responses will be saved.

Once you’ve registered, you’ll receive an email with a unique link to restart your application at any time.

Submit your application and make the necessary payment.

Once you are satisfied with the completeness of your application and ready to submit it, you must pay the IHS fee and the UKVI fee. You will get an email receipt for both payments. There is a reference number in the IHS payment email that you should use to pay the UKVI charge.

Schedule your Biometric Appointment.

Once you’ve found a UK visa centre that is convenient for you, click the “Provide documents and biometrics” button to schedule your biometric appointment. After that, the system will redirect you to the website of the third party that operates the visa centers in your country. To register or log in, the site may ask for information such as the GWF number of the application form, which may be found on the front page of the form (after you download the completed PDF file).

Attend your biometric appointment and bring the necessary supporting documents with you.

You can upload your supporting documents electronically on the Third Party’s site. If you pick this option, you must upload all of your documentation before your biometric appointment. When you visit the visa centre, you can usually have your supporting documents scanned as well. It’s worth noting that there may be alternative ways to submit your supporting documents before and after your Biometric session (the options vary depending on your country and the third-party company).

Receiving a decision on your visa application

The Home Office normally sends an email to acknowledge receipt of the application. This certifies that the UKVI has received your biometric information and accompanying documentation online so that they can assess your application.

If you ordered the Priority Visa Service, you should obtain a decision within 30 to 60 working days (6 weeks is the UKVI’s current service standard, although this is not guaranteed).  If you selected the regular service, you should get a decision within 3-4 months.

The UKVI will send an email or SMS message to indicate that they have issued a decision. The visa centre you visited will also send you an email informing you that your documents are ready for collection. When you arrive, you will receive your passport and the decision letter from the UKVI. If the visa is approved, your passport will have a visa stamp (vignette) that is normally valid for 30 days from the date of issue (or 6 months if you applied as a fiancé or proposed civil partner).