UK Spouse Visa

The UK Spouse Visa is a visa route for the married partners of British citizens, those settled in the UK, those with pre-settled status in the UK, as well as those who have a Turkish Worker or Businessperson visa, as well as those with refugee status or humanitarian persons. Be aware that the financial requirement for this type of visa is changing and is subject to updates.

To stay up-to-date on the changes for this visa type and for help with your application, speak to a member of our team at Total Law today. Just give us a call at +44 (0)333 305 9375 to get started.

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    UK Spouse Visa: An Introduction

    Bangladeshi individuals can apply for a UK Spouse Visa to live with and join their partner in the UK if they are a British citizen or a settled person in the UK, such as someone who has ILR (indefinite leave to remain).

    Applicants do not automatically obtain the right to live in the UK by marrying a British citizen; instead, they must apply for a Spouse Visa to live in the UK with their partner. Those who are eligible include those in a civil partnership, those who are married, and those who are unmarried.

    For an applicant to be able to apply, they must meet a certain set of eligibility criteria as detailed by the UK Home Office. If this visa is granted to the applicant, then they will have this visa for a period of up to 2 years and 9 months.

    After this, applicants can extend their stay, later obtaining ILR, which allows them to remain in the UK permanently. Once an applicant has obtained ILR, they can obtain British citizenship through naturalisation.

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    UK Spouse Visa Requirements & Eligibility Criteria

    There are many requirements and eligibility criteria that a Bangladeshi applicant will need to meet to be eligible for the UK Spouse Visa.

    Who Can Apply?

    Bangladeshis can apply for this type of visa, provided that they have a partner who is based in the UK. This could be someone who is any of the following:

    • The partner is a British or Irish citizen.
    • The partner has settled in the UK and has ILR, EU settled status, or permanent residence in the UK.
    • The partner has humanitarian protection or refugee status in the UK.
    • The partner has a Turkish Businessperson Visa or a Turkish Worker Visa.

    The partners must intend on living together in the UK when the spouse visa is granted, and the couple will need to provide significant proof that the relationship is genuine and subsisting.

    UK Spouse Requirements

    For an applicant to be successful in a UK spouse visa application, they will need to meet a set of eligibility requirements, which can include providing evidence of the following:

    • The individual is in a genuine and eligible relationship.
    • The applicant and their partner’s combined annual income meets the financial requirements. While this is £18,600 as of December 2023, this is set to increase. At the time of writing, this is suggested to increase to £29,000, then £34,500, and then £38,700 over an unspecified period. However, this is subject to change, so be aware of this and contact Total Law at +44 (0)333 305 9375 to stay updated.
    • The applicant has suitable accommodation prepared in the UK.
    • The applicant meets the English language requirements in the UK: They will have to meet at least a level A1 requirement for their first visa application.

    Required Documents

    The applicant will need to provide several documents along with their visa application. These documents may include the following:

    • A completed application form and associated application fee.
    • A valid passport.
    • Any previous passports.
    • Evidence that the relationship between the applicant and their partner is genuine and subsisting. This can include evidence such as correspondence, shared bills, messages, and photographs.
    • Proof of the applicant meeting the necessary English language requirement. This could be shown via a CEFR exam certificate.
    • Two colour photos, passport-sized, that are in line with the UK-set requirements.
    • Proof that you meet the financial requirements in the UK at the time of application. This can include savings statements, bank statements, and wage slips.
    • Details covering any previous immigration applications, if relevant.
    • Details covering any criminal convictions, if relevant.
    • The applicant’s National Insurance Number if they have one.
    • Proof that the applicant has suitable accommodation in the UK.
    • Biometric information (this includes having your photograph taken and fingerprints scanned).
    • Tuberculosis test results. This is a requirement for those from Bangladesh. Applicants can get a test done in:
      • Chittagong.
      • Dhaka.
      • Sylhet.

    It is pivotal that applicants provide all of the documentation and evidence that is required for this application by UKVI to obtain a positive decision.

    If the applicant does not provide all evidence in the correct format and is translated where needed, this can lead to a delay in the application or a refusal of the visa.

    This is why it is best to speak to a member of our team at Total Law. We can help you complete your application and ensure a positive outcome. Give us a call at +44 (0)333 305 9375 for assistance in your visa application.

    Spouse Visa Application Costs

    As of 2023, the UK Spouse Visa application fee is £1,048 if you are applying in the UK, or £1,846 if you are applying from outside of the UK.

    Applicants should be aware that other associated costs come with this visa application. Applicants will have to pay the Immigration Healthcare Surcharge, which has a fee of £624 per year in the UK, as well as the £19.20 cost of obtaining a BRP (Biometric Residence Permit).

    Those who wish to obtain a faster decision on their visa applications can also pay the super-priority service charge, which is £1,000 at the time of writing. This service will give the applicant a decision on their application by the end of the next working day.

    Our team of legal experts can help you increase the chances of obtaining a spouse visa for the UK. Contact Us

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      UK Spouse Visa Application Process: Step-By-Step

      The application process for a UK Spouse visa is easy to complete and can be completed online via the UK Government Home Office website. The application steps to apply for a Spouse Visa are as follows:

      1. You will need to check your eligibility for this visa before applying. If you are unsure, give us a call at +44 (0)333 305 9375 to speak to a Total Law legal advisor and find out if you fit the eligibility criteria.
      2. Prepare all of your documents as needed to prove your eligibility for this visa. Ensure that any documents that are not already in English are officially translated.
      3. Next, you will need to go to the Home Office website and complete the relevant application form.
      4. Once the application form is completed, the applicant will need to pay the necessary application fee (see price above).
      5. With the application completed and the fee paid, the applicant will now need to upload any documents they need to support their application for the Spouse Visa.
      6. With all documents submitted, the applicant will be able to arrange a biometric appointment. At this appointment, the applicant will have their photograph taken and fingerprints scanned. Make sure you attend this appointment on time. These appointments will be held at a Visa Application Centre. In Bangladesh, there are two available VACs. These are:
        • Dhaka VAC.
        • Sylhet VAC.
      7. If the applicant receives a request to attend an interview, the applicant must be sure to attend. If they do not, this may impact their application and result in a refusal.

      Application Processing Time

      The UK Home Office has a standard service for deciding on Spouse Visa UK applications submitted from outside of the UK. The typical amount of time it takes to process a Spouse Visa application submitted from outside the UK will be 3 months.

      However, this may now be less, as since a reduction in the vast backlog the Home Office faced for Ukraine Visa Scheme applications, family visa and standard marriage applications are being processed faster. This means that many Spouse Visas have a processing time of 60 days.

      Those who are switching to a Spouse Visa from another visa from inside the UK or those who are looking to extend the visa should receive a decision within 8 weeks.

      Applicants may be able to use the Super Priority Visa Service for their visa to get a faster decision within one working day. There is also a Priority Service which can result in an application decision within 30 working days.

      If you have any questions about UK spouse visa, our team is happy to assist. Contact Us

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        Extending/ Renewing UK Spouse Visa

        Overview

        The Spouse Visa UK has an initial validity period of 2 years and 9 months. However, it is possible to extend this visa for an additional 2 years and 6 months. To be eligible, the applicant must still be in the same relationship with their partner based in the UK, and they must also apply before the current visa expires.

        If the visa expires before the applicant reapplies, then they will need to apply again from outside of the UK.

        Indefinite Leave To Remain Spouse Visa

        If you have a Spouse Visa application that is successful, you will be granted entry into the UK for over 2 years. If you are going to extend this visa, this must be done before the original one expires. Once the extension of the visa is successful, you can consider applying for ILR.

        You can apply for IL after 5 years in the UK; therefore, applicants who extend their Spouse visa will be able to apply before their extended visa expires.

        The applicant must be eligible for ILR to apply, and they will need to meet the eligibility requirements set out by the Home Office. This includes:

        • The applicant must have lived in the UK for 5 years in total on the Spouse Visa.
        • The applicant must have lived with their partner since they last renewed their visa.
        • The applicant must be in a genuine and subsisting relationship with their partner.
        • The applicant and their partner must intend to continue their relationship after they have applied for Indefinite Leave to Remain.
        • The applicant must meet the English language requirements and Life in the UK requirements to show they can communicate in English and adapt to UK culture.
        • The applicant must prove that they have suitable accommodation to live in the UK.
        • The applicant must continue to meet the necessary financial requirements for their immigration status.

        If an applicant applies for ILR to remain in the UK with their spouse but does not satisfy these requirements, UKVI will consider if they meet the requirements for further extension of stay.

        Spouse Visa Holders Rights And Benefits

        There are many benefits to the Spouse Visa; these include the following:

        • The couple gets to be together in the UK.
        • The visa can lead to ILR and eventually citizenship.
        • The non-UK spouse can work in the UK.
        • The non-UK spouse can study in the UK.

        The Bangladeshi spouse will not, however, be able to apply to settle in the UK until after 5 years on the spouse visa. Similarly, the Bangladeshi spouse will also not be able to apply for benefits or any other public funding for themselves or their dependents.

        How Total Law Can Help

        The UK Spouse Visa can be complex. You will need to have many documents pre-prepared and be up-to-date on the changes to the financial requirements in the future. That being said, a Spouse Visa in the UK is not too hard to obtain. If you are eligible for a Spouse Visa then there should be no issue with applying.

        However, it is still good practice to seek out the assistance of a legal professional when you are applying for a Spouse Visa. These visas let you stay in the UK and obtain leave to remain as a spouse. This is why you should speak to a member of our team at Total Law.

        Our team are experts with UK Spouse Visas and can ensure you and your partner have a successful application and can stay in the UK together. Contact us today at +44 (0)333 305 9375 to get your Spouse Visa application started.

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                  FAQs

                  The Spouse Visa requirements are very strict; however, after 2021, the success rate of these applications was as high as 86.88%. However, the latest statistics, reviewed in 2023, saw 1 in 4 applications get rejected.

                  This gives the UK Spouse Visa application an average success rate of 75%, which is still very high. However, this may change with the potential future 2024 financial requirement changes.

                  The UK Home Office is suggesting increasing the minimum income requirement of the spouse visa to £29,000 in spring 2024, up from £18,000, which is the current (December 2023) requirement.

                  It is suggested that this will continue to increase in increments until it reaches £38,700. However, there are no official dates for these changes, and these suggestions are still liable to change.

                  A marriage certificate can help prove you are in a genuine and subsisting relationship if you apply for a Spouse Visa. However, your UK Spouse Visa application could also be supported by proof such as a civil partnership certificate, joint utility bills, council tax bills, a bank statement from a joint account, or a tenancy agreement.