- Who can apply for a UK Fiance Visa?
- What are the English language requirements?
- Genuine relationship requirement
- What are the Fiance Visa UK financial requirements?
- How to apply for the Fiancé Visa
- Costs and processing time
- What happens if your UK Fiance Visa application is successful?
- What happens if your UK Fiance Visa application is refused?
- Marriage Visitor Visa
- Switching to a Spouse Visa
- Frequently asked questions
Who is the UK Fiancé Visa for?
The Fiance Visa is a visa category designed for people who are engaged to an eligible person based in the UK. The UK-based partner must be either an Irish or British citizen or a person with settled status.
The fiance visa requirements include proof of your relationship and English language level. There are also financial requirements that you must meet in order to be granted the UK Fiance Visa.
If granted, you will be given leave to enter the UK for up to six months. It is a requirement of the fiance visa that you get married to your partner within this time period.
Before your visa expires, you must apply for a new form of visa (switch your visa category) if you wish to stay with your spouse in the UK. Most people will apply for a UK Spouse Visa. There is a significant amount of documentation and preparation involved in this application.
If granted a Spouse Visa, you will be granted the ability to continue living in the UK for up to 30 months. This visa can be extended for a further 30 months.
Who can apply for a UK Fiance Visa?
As with all visa categories, there are strict conditions that must be proven as part of the application. Below is an outline of who can apply for a UK Fiance Visa.
The primary condition of the UK Fiance visa is that neither partner is in an existing marriage and that all previous marriages or civil partnerships have been concluded. As well as this, you must be able to show that you plan to get married (or enter into a civil partnership) within six months of coming to the UK.
Further eligibility criteria include:
- You and your partner are aged over 18 years old
- Your partner is based in the UK and is a British citizen or has settled status
- You can prove that your relationship meets the ‘genuine and subsisting’ relationship requirements
- You can provide evidence of your ability to meet the minimum financial requirement without accessing public funds as well as the adequate accommodation requirement
- You and your partner plan to live together permanently in the UK
- You meet the English language level requirement
All of the above must be evidence by documentation in your application. The process can be complex and time-consuming and it may be worth engaging with a trained immigration solicitor to work with you on your case.
What are the English language requirements?
There are language requirements that you must meet in order to be granted the Fiance Visa. You must obtain at least level A1 on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages scale.
You should be able to prove this level with a certificate of an approved exam issued by a valid course provider. However, there are some people who do not need to take an exam.
People who do not need to take an English language exam include:
- Nationals of a recognised primary English-language speaking country
- Holders of a university degree that was taught through English at a valid university
- People aged over 65 years of age
- People who have a mental or physical condition that prevents them from proving their English language level
- Those who can demonstrate that they have exceptional circumstances that would prevent them from meeting the requirement
How to meet the Partner Visa genuine relationship requirement?
To get a UK Fiance Visa, you and your partner must demonstrate that you are willing to get married within six months of your application date and that you are in love.
Any document that proves the validity of your relationship may help support your application. Such documents that can serve as proofs of your relationship include:
- Birth certificates of your children(if you have any)
- Reference letters from family members and friends
- Bank statements of joint accounts
Newcastle Immigration Lawyers can help gather extensive evidence and documents to prove your relationship. If you are not sure of what evidence to provide, discuss it with our immigration experts for guidance and help.
What are the Fiance Visa financial requirements?
It is important for applicants to show that they can support themselves and any dependents in order to be granted a UK Fiance Visa.
You will not be permitted to access public funds while on your stay in the UK, therefore you must provide proof of your finances. The immigration rules do not allow a holder of the Fiance visa category to be employed or own a business.
Similar to the Spouse Visa, the minimum income requirement is £18,600. If you have a dependent child, you also need to prove an additional £3,800 for the first child and £2,400 for any other child dependents.
You must show how you meet the financial requirement through some of the following methods: a consistent salary or wage (employed or self-employed), relevant benefits including sick pay or parental pay, savings, income from a property, or pension payments.
How to apply for the Fiancé Visa
Our simple guide provides an outline of what is involved in completing and submitting your UK Fiance Visa application.
Fiance Visa Application process
- Choose the correct online visa application form and enter the country where you intend to provide biometric information (facial photograph and fingerprints)
- Complete the initial sections of the application and the finance section
- When presented with a document checklist, you should state that you will submit all the correct documents with the application
- Make a choice regarding the standard service (two to three months processing time) or priority service (approximately six weeks)
- Choose a suitable appointment time at a visa application centre
- Submit payment for the application fee
- Attend your visa application centre appointment (where relevant) to provide your biometrics
- Ensure that all the relevant and necessary documents have been submitted
After this, you have done everything that is required and you should now wait for a decision on your UK Fiance Visa application.
Costs and processing time of the Fiance Visa UK
The Fiance(e) Visa application fee costs £1,523 if you apply from outside the UK, while there is a charge of £1,033 if you apply from inside the UK.
Your application will usually be processed within two to three months following the submission of your application. If you have not provided all the information that was required by the application, you may be asked for further evidence.
This could then result in a delay in your application. Similarly, if the caseworker assessing your case requires additional information or evidence, the length of time to receive a decision on your application may be much longer.
In order to give yourself the knowledge that your application has been completed to the highest possible standard, it is recommended to work with an immigration solicitor. This may give you the best chance of a successful first-time application.
Get in touch with Newcastle Immigration Lawyers if you wish to apply for a fiance visa. Call 0191 303 8965 to speak with us or contact us online.
What happens if your Fiancé Visa application is successful?
If you receive a positive decision on your Fiance Visa application, you will first receive an official letter or email from the Home Office to confirm this and outline the conditions of your stay.
You will be issued with a six-month Fiance Visa and you are required to enter the UK to get married to your partner or UK fiance within this period.
You should be aware that if you wish to continue living in the UK after your fiance visa expires, you will apply for a new visa category before its expiry date.
What happens if your Fiance Visa application is refused?
You may have some recourse if your Fiance Visa has been rejected or refused. You will be notified by an official letter or email if your application has not been granted, and this will outline the reasons why it was refused.
However, if you are confident that your UK fiance visa application was refused unfairly, you may challenge the decision. You can choose to lodge an administrative review to reconsider whether the application was dealt with correctly.
In some situations, you may have the ability to request a legal appeal if you believe that your Fiance visa application should have been accepted and you fulfil all the criteria.
In doing so, it is recommended to engage an immigration solicitor to support your appeal and give yourself the best chance of a successful appeal.
How to enter the UK to marry only
If you wish to come to the UK to marry without settling, you don’t need to apply for a UK fiance visa. You can consider other lower-cost routes, such as the Marriage Visitor Visa. It costs £95 and allows you to marry your partner in the UK.
With the Marriage Visit Visa, you can get married enter into a civil partnership in the UK. Also, you can use this visa to give notice of the impending wedding or civil partnership in the UK.
You don’t need to apply for this visa if you are an Irish citizen or you have applied for the EU Settlement Scheme (regardless of if you have settled, pre-settled, or are still awaiting a decision). Also, if you qualify for British Citizenship, you cannot apply for a Marriage Visitor visa.
Unlike the fiance visa, the marriage visitor visa does not allow settlement or prolonged stay in the UK. It’s valid for six months, after which you must return to your home country; you cannot extend this visa or switch. Also, you cannot work, study, or bring dependants or family members on this visa. Furthermore, it doesn’t lead to Indefinite Leave to Remain.
Switching to a UK Spouse Visa
If you have been granted your Fiance Visa and you have come to the UK and married or entered into a civil partnership with your partner, you can now begin the process of switching to a Spouse Visa.
This visa category has been designed for legally married couples who intend to live together permanently in the UK.
Many of the same conditions apply to the UK Spouse Visa as the UK Fiance Visa, with some key differences. There is a requirement to submit a new application and you must also pay the immigration health surcharge.
Unlike the Fiancé Visa, spouse visa holders can work or study in the UK. The time that you spend in the UK on this visa can be counted towards a potential application for indefinite leave to remain and later, British citizenship.
You can extend the Spouse Visa for an additional 30 months before you are eligible for indefinite leave to remain (ILR). After holding ILR for a year, you can apply to become a British citizen.
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There is a requirement that you get married to your partner within six months of arriving in the UK on a Fiance Visa. If you are prevented from marrying within this time, you may be able to request a visa extension due to unforeseen circumstances.
There is a fee of £1,523 for UK fiance visa applications made outside the UK, and £1,033 for applications made within the UK. However, there may be additional costs associated with your application.
These include costs that may be involved in gathering the evidence needed for your application. For example, you may be required to submit official bank statements which may come at an additional cost.
There have been a number of changes to the application process as a result of the pandemic, and it is recommended to check with the Gov.uk website on a regular basis for any updates relevant to you.
In terms of Fiance Visas, if your marriage or civil ceremony has been cancelled or delayed as a result of the COVID-19 restrictions, you can either apply for a visa extension or request additional time to stay in the UK (a process called ‘exceptional assurance’).
No, you are not required to pay the immigration health surcharge if you are granted a Fiance(e) Visa as this is a short-term visa. However, if you wish to switch to a Spouse Visa, you will have to pay this fee.
You could extend your fiance or proposed civil partner visa if you failed to get married after six months from when you entered to live in the UK.
If you got married or obtained a civil partnership during the six months, you can apply for a spouse visa rather than extending your fiance visa. Otherwise, you can extend your UK fiance visa.
The fiance visa extension requirements include that you must already be living in the UK on your fiance visa, your partner must still be a UK citizen or hold settled status, and you must show that there is a good reason why the wedding or civil partnership did not take place within the six months.