Spouse Visa UK For Australians

Australian nationals must apply for a spouse visa to join their spouses/partners settled in the UK. A spouse visa falls under the UK family visa category, and is also referred to as a marriage visa sometimes.

If you are looking for more information regarding how you can join your spouse/partner in the UK, what criteria you must fulfil, and how to apply, or want to receive bespoke advice from a team of professional immigration lawyers, call us today on +44 (0)333 305 9375.

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    Overview of a UK Spouse Visa for Australians

    Australians wishing to come and live with their spouses or partners settled in the UK, will need to apply for a UK family visa as a spouse or partner. This is referred to as a UK spouse visa or UK marriage visa in common parlance, but there is no visa formally called a ‘spouse visa’ in the UK.

    A UK family visa is initially valid for 33 months and renewable thereafter. Once your family visa is approved, you can come to the UK from Australia and apply for a biometric residence permit (BRP). You will be allowed to work or study in the UK, and may claim access to public funds for yourself and your dependents, if any.

    After living in the UK continuously for five years on a family visa as a spouse/partner, you may apply for indefinite leave to remain (ILR), provided you fulfil all relevant conditions. You will not be allowed to include any time spent in the country on another visa or as a fiancé, fiancée or proposed civil partner.

    If your spouse or partner residing in the UK is an EEA national and has pre-settled status there, you may also apply to join them through the EU Settlement Scheme.

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    UK Spouse Visa Requirements for Australians

    Overview

    The Home Office has specific criteria for both the spouse visa applicant and their spouse/partner settled in the UK. To apply for a spouse visa, your spouse or partner residing in the UK must be any of the following:

    • A British or Irish citizen
    • A foreign national permanently settled in the UK with ILR or proof of permanent residence, or having a settled status
    • An EEA national having pre-settled status in the UK
    • A foreign national holding a Turkish Businessperson visa or Turkish Worker visa
    • A foreign national with protection status in the UK (e.g. a recognised refugee or person with humanitarian protection)
    • A foreign national with permission to remain in the UK as a stateless person

    If your spouse/partner does not fall in any of the above categories and is holding a work/study visa in the UK, you cannot apply for a spouse visa. You may be eligible to come and live in the UK as their dependent family member instead.

    Moreover, to be eligible for a spouse visa, you and your spouse/partner both must be 18 or over. You must be married or in a civil partnership recognised in the UK, or in a live-in relationship, for at least two years prior to your application. For couples in a relationship for at least two years but who have not been able to live together for valid reasons (e.g. working or studying in different places), may also be eligible to apply.

    Furthermore, if you are a fiancé, fiancée or proposed civil partner and intend to marry or enter into a civil partnership within six months of arriving in the UK, you may also apply through this route. You must be able to prove that any previous marriages or civil partnerships for either of you have ended before you apply.

    However, in that case, your visa will be valid for a maximum of six months and you will not be allowed to work or study in the UK while on this visa. You will have to apply for a spouse visa once you are married or formed a civil partnership.

    UK Spouse Visa Financial Requirement

    You must have sufficient financial means to support yourself and any dependents, to be eligible to apply for a UK spouse visa. Your and your spouse/partner’s combined gross annual income must be at least £18,600 (also known as a minimum income requirement).

    If you have any children, you will need an additional £3,800 per year for your first child and an additional £2,400/year per head for subsequent children.

    The acceptable sources of income for consideration are salary, pension, income from self-employment, maternity allowances or bereavement benefits received by the spouse/partner in the UK, and any other income and/or cash savings as declared by you or your spouse/partner.

    Please note that the minimum income level will increase to £29,000 from 11 April 2024, and will gradually rise further to £38,700. Additionally, after April 2024 there will be no requirement to show proof of additional income for dependent children.

    Accommodation Requirement for a UK Spouse Visa

    You or your spouse/partner must have a suitable housing arrangement in the UK, rented or owned, for accommodating your family. It must have sufficient living space, the recommended size for which will vary depending on the headcount in your household. It must also meet public health and safety standards as applicable.

    English Language Requirement for a UK Spouse Visa

    Please note that if you are an Australian citizen, you will not need to prove your level of English language knowledge, which is otherwise mandatory for a UK spouse visa.

    However, if you have a long-term residency status in Australia instead, whether or not you will need to fulfil this requirement will depend on your nationality.

    Our immigration team can help increase the chances of a successful spouse visa application. Contact Us

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      UK Spouse Visa Supporting Documents for Australians

      The most important documentary evidence for a UK spouse visa application is the proof of your relationship.

      Your supporting documents in this regard must be able to prove that you live together or are married or have formed a civil partnership. Such documents must have been issued within the last four years.

      You may submit the following documents:

      • A marriage or civil partnership certificate
      • Tenancy agreement, rent receipts, utility bills or tax bills having both your names and your shared address
      • Bank statements from a joint account, having both your names and your shared address
      • Any other document confirming that you both live in the same address, e.g. voting register etc.

      For couples not living together, you must be able to prove that you have an ongoing commitment by providing evidence such as letters/emails, financial support to each other, shared childcare, photos from holidays or events where you were together etc.

      In addition, you will need:

      • Your current passport (or any other valid travel document) with at least one blank page on which to put the visa
      • Copies of the photo page and any visa or entry stamps in your previous passports
      • Proof of subsistence
      • Copy of your BRP, if applicable
      • National insurance number, if applicable

      If your original documents are not in English or Welsh, you will have to submit their certified translation copies.

      How to Apply for a UK Spouse Visa

      You can apply for a UK spouse visa from within the UK or outside, i.e. Australia in this context. A UK spouse visa application is an online process. You will need an email ID to create an account on the Home Office website.

      Please arrange for your supporting documents beforehand. Also have your and your partner’s details, details of your parents and any child you have together, and detailed information about any previous UK visa applications and criminal convictions (if any) ready with you, to answer the questions on the online visa form satisfactorily.

      VFS Global is the third-party consular service provider for the UK embassy/consulate in Australia. Once you have completed the visa form online and paid your visa fees and health surcharge, please schedule an appointment with any of the visa application centres run by VFS Global nearest to your location in Australia, to submit your biometric information, your passport and supporting documents, and attend a visa interview if asked for.

      Spouse Visa UK Processing Time and Fees

      The current processing time is 24 weeks if applied from outside the UK (i.e. Australia in this context) and eight weeks if applied from within. Your visa processing time starts from the day you submit your supporting documents and biometric details at a VFS Global centre.

      However, this may increase if your application is incomplete or not accurate, or you are asked to submit further evidence, or your local UK embassy/consulate is experiencing an increased visa demand. Applicants within the UK may avail the super priority service to get a decision in the next working day by paying an additional fee of £1,000.

      A spouse visa will cost £1,846 when applied from Australia or £1,048 if applied from within the UK. You will have to pay the same amount for each dependent added to your application, if any. There is also an additional health surcharge to be paid, which varies from £2,587.50 to £5,175 per adult and £1,940 to £3,880 per child, depending on your length of intended stay.

      You may appeal for a visa fee waiver in certain cases, e.g. you do not have and cannot afford an accommodation, you have accommodation but cannot afford essential living costs, or your income level is so low that paying the fee would harm your child’s wellbeing.

      For professional assistance and application help, speak to our immigration team. Contact Us

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        How Can Total Law Help?

        The Total Law team of sympathetic immigration lawyers have the required expertise and legal knowledge to help you immigrate to the UK to join your spouse/partner, regardless of your personal circumstances or the complexity of your case. Several Australian nationals have benefited so far from our expert assistance with their UK spouse visa applications and immigration advice.

        Whether you are looking for assistance with your UK spouse visa application, unsure of how to go through the process, need more advice on how to arrange for the necessary documents, seeking professional help or simply need overall advice regarding your immigration case, we are ready to help you.

        We can also help if you are getting a divorce and seeking to switch to another type of visa to continue staying in the UK, or if you are looking for professional legal help to appeal a UK spouse visa refusal decision.

        To know more about the services we provide and how our team of experienced lawyers can help you with your immigration case, call us today on +44 (0)333 305 9375.

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                  Frequently Asked Questions

                  The Home Office may refuse your UK spouse visa applications if they have reason(s) to believe that your relationship is not genuine, or you do not meet the financial or accommodation requirements. Your spouse visa application may be rejected on technical grounds, e.g. an inaccurate application form, lack of evidence or inability to pay the visa fees/surcharge. You may also not get a visa if you have a criminal record or medical issues that may prove to be not conducive to the public good in the UK.

                  The Home Office visa rejection letter will mention if you can appeal against a refusal decision. If eligible, you must appeal within 14 days if within the UK or 28 days if outside the country. Get in touch immediately with our legal immigration experts on +44 (0)333 305 9375 for proceeding with an appeal if your spouse visa application is rejected.

                  No. Your spouse visa in the UK was granted by the Home Office. So, only the Home Office has the authority to cancel/curtail your visa or make you leave the country if there are sufficient grounds to do so.