How to Bring Your Spouse to the UK

As a growing number of Brits are marrying abroad, demand for UK spouse visas is ever-increasing.

Many British citizens find their partners in life overseas. Some meet their partners through family and friends and some meet by chance during an overseas trip. Some find happiness through dating apps. Many British men travel to where their partner lives and decide to get married there.

However, they cannot take their spouse back to the UK without a visa. There are several steps to securing a spouse visa. To help you understand the process, here are important information and the steps on how to apply for a spouse visa in the UK, so you and your loved one can start a new life together in your home country.

What is a UK spouse visa?

A UK spouse visa, which is also called a UK marriage visa, allows the marriage partner of a UK citizen to enter and live with their partner legally in the UK. The UK spouse should be a person legally settled in the UK or a British citizen.

Permit to work or study

The UK spouse visa allows the marriage partner of a British citizen to study or work in the UK. The spouse can study or work upon receipt of the visa and the person is already in the country.

How to apply for a UK spouse visa

It is possible to apply for a UK spouse visa while still overseas or already in the country. If you are already in the UK on a student visa, work visa, or fiancé visa valid for over six months, it is possible to switch to a spouse visa if you are married to a British citizen.

Requirements to get a spouse visa

There are several requirements you must meet to qualify for a UK spouse visa.

  • Both you and your spouse should be at least 18 years old.
  • You met each other before and are now legally married.
  • You should intend to permanently live together.
  • You should prove that you have enough money to support yourself and any dependants without applying for support from public funds.
  • The sponsoring partner must earn the minimum annual salary stated in the latest guideline. The other option is for the sponsoring partner to show proof of enough savings to sponsor the spouse. If there are dependant children, the minimum financial requirement increases.
  • There should be suitable accommodation for the UK citizen, the spouse and their dependents.
  • The non-UK spouse must meet the English language requirements.

Processing time and validity

The UK spouse visa application processing time usually takes two to twelve weeks after submission of the application. However, the processing time will vary according to the country where the application is submitted.

If the application came from overseas, the validity of the visa is for 33 months. If an applicant is already in the UK, the visa is valid for 30 months.

What you see here are the general requirements that the applicant for the UK spouse visa should meet. The process includes many details. To ensure that your application follows all the guidelines, it is advisable to work with an experienced immigration solicitor.

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