UK Spouse Visa: Fees, Documents, Rules

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UK Spouse Visa

UK Spouse Visa is a type of visa that allows non-UK nationals to join their partner or spouse in the United Kingdom. This UK visa category is designed to help couples who wish to live together in the UK. Applying for a UK Spouse visa can be a daunting and complex process. It requires careful preparation and attention, as well as a thorough understanding of the application process and requirements. However, with the right guidance and support, the process can be navigated successfully. In this blog, we will discuss the UK spouse visa its requirements and other important information.

What is UK Spouse Visa?

The spouse visa (also known as the partner and spouse visa) allows an eligible foreign national to join and live in the UK with their partner if they are a British citizen or established person (e.g., someone with Indefinite Leave to Remain or EU established Status). Marriage to a British citizen will not immediately provide you the right to live in the UK. To live in the United Kingdom with your partner, you must apply for a Spouse Visa. Applicants who are married, in a civil partnership, or unmarried are all eligible.

Conditions to Apply for UK Spouse Visa?

You can apply for a UK partner and spouse visa as a foreign citizen if your partner is based in the UK. They must;

  • Be a British or Irish national (by birth or naturalisation).
  • Have established a permanent presence in the UK and have Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), permanent residence, or EU Settled Status.
  • Have refugee status or humanitarian protection in the United Kingdom.
  • Has a Turkish Worker visa or a Turkish Businessperson visa.
  • Intend to live together in the UK after moving here (if you haven’t already), and you must also offer evidence of your genuine and ongoing connection.

Also Read: UK Student Dependent Visa: New Rules, Requirements, Guide

UK Spouse Visa Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for the United Kingdom spouse visa, the applicant must meet certain criteria. The Immigration authorities of the UK have set these requirements which must be fulfilled by both the resident and the applicant. The main condition is that both the applicant and resident must be over 18 years of age. British law does not recognize marriages under 18 years of age. The eligibility criteria for a UK spouse visa are mentioned below:

  1. The resident spouse must be a British citizen.
  2. Your civil partnership or marriage must be recognized by the government of the UK.
  3. Your marriage must be at least two years old when you apply for the visa.
  4. The financial requirements must be met by the partner living in the UK.
  5. If both of you are not in a civil partnership, you must show proof that within 6 months you will be entering into a civil partnership.
  6. If the resident is your fiance you must show proof that you will marry within 6 months.
  7. The applicant must meet the English language requirements. 
  8. The applicant must not have a criminal record or pose a threat to national security.

Genuine Relationship Test

The genuine relationship test is to testify that you are in a genuine relationship with a British citizen. These civil relationships can be proven through the following;

  • Joint tenancy or mortgage inside or outside of the UK.
  • Proof of any children you might have together, for example, a Birth Certificate.
  • Photographs of time spent together over a period.
  • Text messages or chat logs.
  • Shared savings or bank accounts.
  • Travel documents related to meeting one another before marrying.
  • Any documented evidence depicting willingness to live together in the UK.

English Language Requirements

Spouses need to prove their English proficiency by taking an English proficiency test that is approved by the Secure English Language Testing (SELT) Provider. SELT tests can be avail through Trinity College London or IELTS.

Nevertheless, people from English-speaking countries or those who are above 65 years of age or below 18 years of age do not have to prove their English Proficiency. Even in case of long-term physical or mental ailment, candidates are exempted from the language proficiency tests.

Also, any qualification attained by the candidate in English, that is approved by UK NARIC is also valid to compensate for the English proficiency test for a spouse visa.

Who Need Not Provide Proof of English Language Proficiency?

Check below the residents of which all countries need not provide proof of English language proficiency:

  • Antigua and Barbuda
  • Australia
  • The Bahamas
  • Barbados
  • Belize
  • Canada
  • Dominica
  • Grenada
  • Guyana
  • Jamaica
  • New Zealand
  • St Kitts and Nevis
  • St Lucia
  • St Vincent and the Grenadines
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • USA

Financial Requirements

The candidates also need to prove self-sustenance without the use of any public funds. With no dependent children involved, the minimum earnings of the spouse should be £18,600 before tax. An additional amount of £3,800 is required for a spouse with 1 dependent child and £2,400 for each subsequent child if any. You can prove your financial requirements through the following:

  • £16,000 of savings or more.
  • Earnings from any kind of employment.
  • Any maternity pay, paternity pay, adoption pay or sick pay amounts.
  • Income generated through rents.
  • The amount earned through a pension.

Accommodation Requirements

Another important requirement is an accommodation in the UK. You need proof of accommodation that matches the standard of living in the UK. Additionally, the partner in the UK needs to prove that they can provide for themselves and their partner. The following might be asked for as proof of accommodation;

  • Description of the home one intends to live in.
  • Proof of funds to pay for the accommodation.
  • Proof of accommodation space at the property to house the family.

Must Read: Spouse Visa Guide for UK, USA, Canada

Also Read: UK Tier 4 Visa: Meaning, Checklist

Documents Required

The applicant must have some important documents when they apply for the UK spouse visa. The list of documents, when you meet with the consular officer, is as follows:

  1. UK Visa Application Form
  2. A valid passport and also your previous passports
  3. Two passport photographs (colored)
  4. Proof of English language Requirement
  5. Proof of relationship(photo of you two together)
  6. Proof of financial means (UK Resident)
  7. Certificate of Criminal record
  8. National Insurance number(If any)
  9. Proof of paid spouse visa fees
  10. Proof of Accommodation
  11. Biometric Information

Must Read: UK Student Visa: Requirements, Cost, Eligibility

UK Spouse Visa Application Process

The application process for a United Kingdom Spouse Visa can be completed online or through a paper application. The process involves the following steps:

  • Applicants can apply online and complete the form VAF4A.
  • Submit the application form and pay the visa fees.
  • Now book your Biometric appointment.
  • Attend the appointment and submit all the required documents.
  • You will receive the decision on your visa application soon.

Spouse Visa Processing Time and Fees

UK spouse visa processing time is 8 to 12 weeks. It will usually take less than 8 weeks if you apply within the UK online or by post. However, if you are in the UK and you apply for the application by personally visiting the office, you can get the answer regarding your visa within a day. 

The visa application fee also depends on the way you apply for the process. If a candidate is applying from outside UK they have to pay £1,538. However, if the candidate is applying for a United Kingdom spouse visa from the United Kingdom the fee will be different. The visa fees in the UK by post or online will be £1,048.

Also Read: UK Visa Restrictions- Check Latest News & Updates

Can You Work on a Spouse Visa?

Yes, one can work in the UK on a Spouse Visa. Once the visa has been successfully granted by the authorities in the UK, the candidate can find jobs there on the basis of the visa approval. Employers will consider your application only when you have the documents to move ready and a matching portfolio for the job. You can work as a spouse only till a time your visa is valid also, a special license or certifications are needed for certain jobs and those will be mandatory to be met.

UK Spouse Visa Duration

The duration of a spouse is based on the place of domicile from where the spouse is applying for the visa. Those applying for a visa from outside the UK will get a visa duration of 33 months. Candidates applying for a spouse visa from within the UK will get a duration of 30 months.

Extending UK Spouse Visa

An extension of 30 months can be applied for on a spouse visa. This makes the total duration of a spouse visa in the UK up to 5 years. After spending 5 years in the UK you can straightaway apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain. This is possible only if all the conditions of the agreement are still being met. After ILR, you become eligible for naturalisation where you become a British Citizen.

Spouse Visa Entry Clearance in the UK

One must also apply for entry clearance before moving to UK in order to attain a smooth entrance in the country. If you are applying for this from within the UK then you must have at least 06 months of validity on your existing visa. If you were in the UK on another shorter visa duration before this, then you cannot change the status of your visa to a spouse visa within this time period.


What are the eligibility criteria for the UK Spouse visa?

The eligibility criteria for the UK spouse visa are as follows:
(1) The resident spouse must be a British citizen
(2) Your marriage must be at least two years old when you apply for the visa
(3) The financial requirements must be met by the partner living in the UK
(4) If the resident is your fiance you must show proof that you will marry within 6 months.

What is a UK spouse visa?

It is a type of visa that allows non-UK nationals to join their partner in the UK. The applicant must meet certain requirements to get the United Kingdom spouse visa.

What is the processing time for a spouse visa in the UK

It takes around 8 to 12 weeks after you attend the visa appointment. Keep in mind, take all the required documents with you.

We hope you understand all the requirements for the United Kingdom Spouse Visa. Are you interested in building your educational career in the UK? We at Leverage Edu can provide you with perfect assistance! Sign up for the free career counselling session with our mentors!

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