A Spouse Visa allows individuals who are married to someone, present and settled in the UK, to apply for entry clearance to the UK. This will allow your spouse to live and work in the UK. Leave is usually granted on a 30-month basis and can be extended for a further 30-months. Once a period of five years is completed lawfully in the UK, you may be eligible to apply for indefinite leave to remain (ILR), as long as your marriage is still subsisting and you continue to meet the necessary financial requirements.
You will need to meet the following requirements to be issued with a UK Spouse Visa:
- You and your partner will need to be 18 years old or over;
- You have met each other and have got married to someone who is either a British Citizen or holds settled status in the UK;
- If you are unmarried partners, you will be required to demonstrate through extensive evidence that you have been living together for a period of at least two years. This evidence can be joint bank statements, tenancy agreements and letters in joint names;
- If you were previously married, you will need to demonstrate that you are no longer in a relationship with that person;
- If you hold a nationality that is outside the EEA and Switzerland, you will need to prove your knowledge of English and provide a Secure English Language Test at minimum level A1;
- If you are from a majority English speaking country, you will not be required to demonstrate your knowledge of English;
- If you have a qualification that is equivalent to a UK degree taught in English, you will need to provide a UK NARIC letter confirming the same;
- You are meeting the financial threshold of £18,600 per annum, or alternatively, have savings for a set period of time. Please note, the minimum threshold increases if you sponsor a dependent child;
- You will be required to pay the Home Office Fee and the Immigration Health Surcharge, currently set at £624 a year. These fees are correct at the date of writing. However, they are subject to change, and we always recommend that you check gov.uk.
Application processing time
Processing times differ depending on visa type and other factors. The average processing time for a spouse visa is between 8-12 weeks from the date of your biometric appointments. However, applications can take up to six months. If your application is delayed, the Home Office usually gets in touch to notify you of the delay.
My spouse visa has been refused
If your spouse visa has been refused, you will be given a right of appeal. The appeal process can be a lengthy process, and we will assess your refusal and provide you with the necessary feedback and next steps.