UK Spouse visa application form 2024 [51 things you should know before submitting]

In this article, we are going to discuss:

1. Where you can find the correct UK spouse visa application form; and

2. 51 things you should know before submitting your UK spouse visa application form.

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#1 Where can I find the UK spouse visa online application form?

The correct UK spouse visa application form will depend on whether the applicant will be applying from outside the UK or inside the UK.


Out-of-country applications (applications that are made from outside the UK)

If the applicant (the person that needs the visa to enter the UK) is outside the UK and wishes to join the sponsor (the UK partner) in the UK as a spouse/partner, you can start completing the current online application form by clicking here.

Once you have clicked the above link, you should then click the link ‘apply from outside the UK‘ under the sub-heading ‘How to apply‘.

out of country link


In-country applications (applications that are made from inside the UK)

If the applicant is already in the UK and wishes to apply to remain inside the UK, you can access and start completing the current online application form by clicking here.

Once you have clicked the above link, you should then click the link ‘apply online in the UK‘ under the sub-heading ‘How to apply‘.

in country spouse visa uk online application form


#2 Do married partners, civil partners, unmarried partners, fiancé(e)s and proposed civil partners use the same online application form?

Yes.

Married partners, civil partners, unmarried partners and fiancé(e)s, and proposed civil partners use the same online application form.

The Home Office will know whether you are applying as a married partner, civil partner, unmarried partner, fiancé(e) or proposed civil partner depending on the answers that you select.

uk spouse visa full legal representation


#3 Do I have to submit the UK spouse visa application form online?

Yes.

The UK spouse visa application forms are online application forms – you will not be submitting any paper application forms.


#4 Do I need an immigration lawyer to complete the online application form?

You do not need an immigration lawyer to complete the online application form.

Many applicants every week successfully submit their visa applications without a lawyer.

However, it is incredibly important that if you do not use an immigration lawyer, you must take the time to fully familiarize yourself with the Immigration Rules and the specified documents you must submit in support of your application form.

This is because not meeting all of the requirements of the Immigration Rules is likely to result in refusal.

If your application is refused you will lose the full spouse visa UK fee in 2024.

Furthermore, depending on the reason for the refusal, a refused application may negatively affect the applications that you submit after the refused application.


#5 Am I allowed to work on a UK spouse visa?

Yes, applicants are entitled to work and study in the UK if they are issued a UK spouse visa.

Note: This is one advantage spouse visas have over UK fiance visas in 2024. Those in the UK on a UK fiancé(e) visa are not permitted to work in the UK until they are granted the subsequent FLR(M) visa.


#6 How do I submit a ‘valid application’?

For the reasons discussed below, submitting a valid application is crucial.

To submit a valid application, you must:

  • Use the correct UK spouse visa application form;
  • Complete the mandatory sections of the spouse visa application form;
  • Pay all of the relevant spouse visa UK 2024 fees (including the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS));
  • Provide the required proof of identity for both the applicant and UK partner;
  • Submit your Biometric information (your fingerprints and photograph will be taken when you attend your visa appointment); and
  • Sign documents where required.

#7 What happens if I do not submit a ‘valid application’?

If you do not submit a valid application, your application will be deemed ‘invalid’.

A valid application means that your application is complete and will be passed on to be assessed by a Home Office decision maker.

An invalid application will likely mean that your application will be treated as if it was not submitted in the first place.

Depending on the circumstances of your application, if you do not submit a valid application, the Home Office may exercise flexibility and offer you the opportunity to rectify your mistake to be able to apply.

You will normally be given 10 days to submit the missing information.

However, for obvious reasons, it is best to ensure that your application is valid in the first place.

Spouse Visa UK DIY Application Pack


#8 What is the UK spouse visa online application form fee in 2024?

For out-of-country applications (applications that are made from outside the UK)

For applications submitted from outside of the UK, the spouse visa online application form fee is £1,846.

You will also have to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge fee which is £3,105.

More information on the costs associated with submitting a spouse visa application from outside the UK can be found here.


For in-country applications (applications that are made from inside the UK)

For applications submitted from inside of the UK, the Home Office application fee is £1,048.

You will also have to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) fee which is currently £2,587.50.

You can also opt for the super-priority service for the application to be processed more quicker for an additional cost of £1,000 per applicant.

More information on the costs associated with submitting a spouse visa application from inside the UK can be found here.


#9 When is the UK Spouse Visa Online Application Form Fee Paid?

The UK spouse visa online application form fee is paid once:

  • You complete all of the questions on the online application form; and
  • You confirm that the information in the online application form is correct.

The fee is paid as part of the online application process.

The date the application is submitted is called the “date of application” and importantly is the date that the requirement must be met.


#10 Will I Receive a Refund of the Home Office fee if my Online Application Form is Refused?

Unfortunately, no. If your application is refused you will not receive a refund of the Home Office fee. You will, however, be issued a refund of the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS).


#11 Can someone other than the applicant pay for the online application form fee?

Yes. Someone other than the person applying for the visa can pay the online application form fee.

Please note that, in some cases, banks commonly reject the payment as part of their fraud detention measures.

If this happens, the account holder will normally have to contact their bank to confirm they authorise the payment.


#12 Will the UK spouse visa application form fee increase?

It is inevitable that the spouse visa online application form fee will increase.

On 4 October 2023, the out-of-country Home Office fee increased from £1,538 to £1,846.

Home Office fees are normally reviewed on a yearly basis.


#13 What are other costs associated with the online application form?

i) Translation of supporting documents

When supporting documents are not in English or Welsh, a translation must be included with the application.

The cost of this varies depending on how many documents you require.

Typical key documents often have to be translated include:

  • Marriage certificates;
  • Divorce certificates; and
  • Mandatory financial documents.

As a general figure, it costs approximately £60 to translate a one-page document and £85 to translate a two-page document.


ii) Financial/maintenance documents

Under the financial requirements, you may need to provide certain key documents from third parties – for example, a letter from a sufficiently qualified accountant – and obtaining these may incur an additional fee.


iii) Lawyer fees

Whilst having a good immigration lawyer will be helpful, it is not required.

The average fee for a qualified immigration lawyer to provide a full legal representation service varies from £1,000-£3,000+.

We charge £2,250 and our Head of Immigration, Ed Lowe, who was in charge of UK visas for several continents during his 20+ years as a Senior Home Office Manager, personally deals with all of our full legal representation cases.

We also provide a £435 DIY Application Pack Service.

Since we know that many partners prefer to process the application without paying thousands in legal fees, this service involves:

  • Providing you with a tailored document checklist;
  • Providing you with a set of relevant tailored letter templates;
  • Providing you with additional tailored written guidance; and
  • Providing you with general email support from qualified and experienced immigration lawyers.

#14 Can I apply for a fee waiver to stop me from having to pay the spouse visa online application fees?

If you apply from outside the UK, you must pay all of the Home Office application fees.

If you apply from inside the UK, you may be eligible for a fee waiver if you:

  • Do not have a place to live and you cannot afford one;
  • Have a place to live but cannot afford your essential living costs like food or heating; or
  • Have a very low income and paying the fee would harm your child’s well-being.

You must complete the online fee waiver request form before you submit your online application.  Further guidance can be found here.

With this being said, only a tiny minority of applicants will be able to obtain a fee waiver.


#15 When should I submit the online application for this visa?

For out-of-country applications (applications that are made from outside the UK)

For out-of-country spouse visa applications, the first thing to note is that the earliest that you should apply is when the Immigration Rules are satisfied.

Some documents may require you to wait several months (e.g., if you are relying on cash savings and need to wait until the required amount of cash savings has been held for 6 months).

Furthermore, some requirements may require you to wait several months (e.g., if you are wanting to apply as an unmarried partner and have cohabited for fewer than 2 years).

Once the Immigration Rules are satisfied, it is mostly a question of convenience for you and your partner.


For in-country applications (applications that are made from inside the UK)

For in-country visa applications, it is very important to know when to submit your online application.

Firstly, it should be noted that the application should normally be submitted before the expiration of the applicant’s current UK visa.

There is no strict time limit with regard to the date of your appointment at the visa centre, although we would recommend not leaving it too long.

As long as you submit and pay the Home Office fees on the online application before the expiration date of the current visa, section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 (otherwise known as Section 3C leave) results in your current visa being automatically extended until a decision has been made on your application (or until the application is withdrawn).

More information about when to submit a spouse visa from inside the UK can be found in our free and detailed FLR(M) visa 2024 guide.


#16 When should I start preparing and thinking about the requirements for this visa?

You should be aware of the requirements and documents you will need for your visa application sooner rather than later.

This is because gathering supporting evidence can take time and you will likely require documents issued by third parties.

Furthermore, certain documents and requirements may be time sensitive.

For example, as we discuss in our free video series, those applying under Category F or G may have to wait, in some instances, longer than a year to satisfy the financial requirement.

The relevant period when it comes to the financial requirement is discussed in our spouse visa UK financial requirements in 2024 article.

uk spouse visa full legal representation


#17 What is the relevant date that the spouse visa requirements must be met?

Generally speaking, the spouse visa UK requirements in 2024 must be met on the date of application.

The date of application is the date the online application is submitted and paid on the online application form.

For a more detailed account of the spouse visa requirements, feel free to read this article here. We also discuss the date of application in our free video series.


#18 Can I submit my documents online?

Yes. You can normally submit your documents online by self-uploading them.

In fact, uploading documents online is now what we generally recommend to partners who are looking to submit their own partner visa application.

After submitting the application by paying the Home Office fee, you will be redirected to another website where you will be able to self-upload the supporting documents.

The supporting documents are never uploaded on the online application form.


#19 Does it matter what order I submit the documents in?

Unless you are told otherwise by the official correspondence from the Home Office, VFS, or TLS, the order of your supporting documents does not matter.

With this being said, a minority of non-UK centres prefer applicants to use barcode dividers.

If this is the case, this should be made clear in the relevant section of the VFS/TLS site.


#20 How long do I have to submit the documents after the appointment at the visa centre?

There is no set time limit after the submission of the application to submit your supporting documents, but it is best practice not to delay too long.

Submitting the documents within two or three weeks is ordinarily fine.


#21 Do my documents have to be originals?

The Home Office will generally no longer insist on seeing original documents.

Rather, copies (paper or digital – depending on the document submission procedure you choose) may be provided.


#22 What happens if I do not submit a required document?

There are three possible outcomes:

  • Your application will be refused; or
  • The Home Office may exercise discretion and request the required document; or
  • The Home Office will grant the application despite not receiving the required document(s).

Obviously, in light of the significance of the visa, it is worth ensuring before submission that the required documents not only are submitted but also comply with the relevant document-specific Immigration Rules.


#23 What happens if I submit a document that does not meet one of the specific requirements that apply to certain documents?

Again, there are three possible outcomes:

  • Your application will be refused; or
  • The Home Office will grant the application despite not receiving a required document; or
  • The Home Office may exercise discretion and request the required document.

#24 What happens if the Home Office refuse my application because they said I did not submit a document (which I did?)

Some visa application centres provide you with a checklist document confirming the documents you submitted.

If you have this, and your application was refused because the Home Office said you did not submit a document, contact the Home Office using this contact form and attach the checklist document confirming that it was originally submitted.

In some cases, Home Office will investigate and find the “missing” document.

In other cases, as unfair as it may be, a document will be lost permanently.

If your document is not found, you may have to submit another fresh application.


#25 When, technically, is the spouse application form submitted?

Applications are submitted when Home Office fees are paid on the online application. This date is known as the ‘date of application’.

The date of application will be stated in the online application form PDF you will be able to download from the online application website.


#26 Is it OK if I start a new application form by creating a new account?

Yes.

If you want to start a fresh application form rather than continuing from your semi-completed application form, it will be perfectly fine to create a new online application form account.


#27 What if I make a mistake on the online application form?

If you have already paid the Home Office fees

This is a difficult question to answer generally since it depends on the mistake.

If the answer that you have provided is an answer that is crucial to the application, then in some instances we would recommend withdrawing the application and then submitting a fresh application.

In such a case, if the visa centre has not been attended, you should receive a refund.

Please note that for in-country applications, withdrawing the application and then submitting a new one will likely be problematic if the applicant’s visa has since expired.

If you have realised that there is a minor mistake in the online application form, feel free to point this out in your letter of support.


If you have not already paid the Home Office fees

If you cannot easily amend the application form, you may find it easier to create a new application by creating a new account.

If you create a new account, you should use a different email address.


#28 What if I find the questions in the UK spouse visa online application form to be ambiguous?

You will not be alone in this regard – some of the questions are indeed phrased rather ambiguously.

If you are unsure about what a question is specifically asking about, we’d suggest answering it to the best of your ability and to elaborate in your letter of support.

Among other things, our DIY Application Pack Service contains guidance on the ambitiously phrased questions.

Spouse Visa UK DIY Application Pack


#29 Can I start completing the online application form now and then submit it at a later date?

Yes, as long as you do not submit the application, your application will be saved for a certain period.

This ‘certain period’ seems to change now and then but as a general rule, it’s absolutely fine starting to complete an application only to return and submit it three months afterwards.


#30 What if I provided incorrect information on the application form (even unintentionally)?

If you realised there was an error in the information on your application form after you submitted the form online, you should explain this in a cover letter and submit this as part of your supporting documents.

Alternatively, as already discussed, you may decide to withdraw the application and submit a fresh one.

It is important to recognise that your application will be assessed under the following suitability requirements and may fall for refusal if the decision maker considers that you have given, whether or not to your knowledge:

  • False information, representations or documents have been submitted about the application (including false information submitted to any person to obtain a document used in support of the application); or
  • There has been a failure to disclose material facts about the application.

#31 What if I do not know an answer to a question?

This depends on the particular question and whether it is a question relating to requirements that must be met such as the financial requirement or a question such as your father’s date of birth, which you may not know.

A good rule of thumb is if the question relates to a particular requirement of Appendix FM, you may wish to wait until you know the answer before submitting your application.

For more general questions, you can explain why you cannot fully answer the question in a cover letter.


#32 How long will I have to wait to hear a decision after submitting the spouse visa online application?

For out-of-country applications (applications that are made from outside the UK)

Providing your application is straightforward, the standard processing time – that is the time it takes for the Home Office to decide your application – for a spouse/partner visa submitted outside of the UK is 3 months on average.

For more information about the processing times for out-of-country spouse visa applications, check out our spouse visa UK processing times in 2024 article.


For in-country applications (applications that are made from inside the UK)

Applications submitted within the UK generally take between 6-8 weeks to process.

As long you applied before your current visa expired, you will be legally entitled to stay in the UK.  This is known as ‘Section 3c Leave’.


#33 Can I speed up the processing time?

Out-of-country applications (applications that are made from outside the UK)

If you wish to speed up the decision-making process, your best option is to look on the VFS or TLS website, depending on where you are applying.

Opting for a settlement priority service will normally reduce processing times to 30 working days or 8 weeks, depending on what country you are applying from.

We discuss how you can find out more about the priority service for the visa centre where the application is being submitted here.


In-country applications (applications that are made from inside the UK)

If you wish to speed up the decision-making process, the super-priority service can be purchased on the Home Office fee payment page on the online application form.

Please note that it is only on this page that the super-priority service can currently be purchased. Therefore, if you want to opt for the super-priority service, if the applicant’s current visa expiry date permits, you may decide to check back again on the Home Office fee payment page at a later date.


#34 What are some other premium services that are available and where can they be found?

Out-of-country applications (applications that are made from outside the UK)

Depending on where you are submitting your application, check the VFS or TLS website.

These are the two official companies that handle visa processing services on behalf of the Home Office overseas.

Once you have selected the relevant website, you will normally have an overview of:

  • The application submitting procedure (the process of submitting your visa application)
  • The available added-value services that you can choose (such as the priority service)

More information regarding the out-of-country spouse visa application process can be found here.


In-country applications (applications that are made from inside the UK)

You can check the UKVCAS website here.


#35 Can someone complete the application on my behalf?

Yes.

In the majority of cases, it is the UK sponsor or a legal representative that completes the application on the applicant’s behalf with their knowledge and consent.

In such a case, the person completing the application form generally completes the answers as though they were the applicant.


#36 Do I receive confirmation after submitting the online application?

You should receive a confirmation email after submitting your online application, however, this is not always the case.

Furthermore, confirmation emails, if sent, are not always sent soon after the online application is submitted – sometimes it is sent weeks after.


#37 Can I appeal, if my online application form is refused?

Applicants are normally allowed to appeal a refused spouse visa application.

If your application is refused, you will receive a refusal notice and a notice of appeal form.

Depending on the reason(s) your application was refused, you may be eligible to request a review of the decision.

Details of the steps and procedure to follow will be outlined in the notice of appeal form.

With this being said, most partners prefer to submit a fresh application as this is much cheaper, simpler and less stressful than going through the appeals process.


#38 Will I have an interview?

When applicants attend the visa centre to provide their biometrics (i.e. fingerprints & photographs), it is very unlikely for the applicant to be interviewed.

This is because the staff at the visa centre are there for primarily administration reasons – they should not provide you with any immigration advice as they are not generally qualified.

#39 Will I be issued a BRP?

If your UK spouse visa is approved, you will be issued a Biometric Residence Permit (BRP).

You will receive a letter confirming where and when you must collect your BRP.


#40 What is a BRP?

A BRP is a credit card-sized document that is automatically issued if your spouse/partner visa is approved.

It includes the following information:

  • Your name, date and place of birth
  • Your fingerprints and a photo of your face (this is your biometric information)
  • Your immigration status and any conditions of your stay
  • Whether you can access public funds, for example, benefits and health services

You can use a BRP to confirm your:

  • Identity
  • Right to study or work in the UK
  • Right to any public services or benefits you’re entitled to

If you travel outside of the UK, it is important to carry your passport and BRP with you as this confirms your entitlement to live in the UK.

If you do not have this document with you, you may be refused entry at the Border.


#41 What if I have a mistake on the BRP that I was just issued?

If there’s a problem with your BRP when it arrives, report it within 10 days.

You can report a mistake or problem with your BRP here.

Otherwise, you may have to apply and pay for a replacement.


#42 What are the UK spouse visa requirements?

For out-of-country applications (applications that are made from outside the UK)

For applications made outside of the UK, the Immigration Rules outline that you must meet certain requirements which fall under these general headings:

i) Suitability requirements

This section determines your overall suitability to be granted a spouse visa.

This includes, but is not limited to, examining your:

  • Current or previous immigration history,
  • Criminal convictions,
  • Use of deception in any current or previous applications,
  • Whether you are subject to an exclusion order; or
  • Whether you pose a risk to public security and safety.

ii) Relationship requirements

This section examines your relationship with your sponsor to determine whether it is ‘genuine’ and ‘subsisting’.


iii) Financial requirements

In this section, your application must show that you meet the minimum income threshold of £18,600+ (or adequate maintenance requirement) for your application through one, or more, of the permitted categories.

Please note

The government intends to increase the minimum income threshold on 11 April 2024 from £18,600 to £29,000.

We discuss this in our UK Spouse & Partner Visa Financial Requirement (Minimum Income Threshold) Increase from £18,600 to £29,000 article.

You must also provide all of the specified evidence outlined in Appendix FM-SE.

For out-of-country applications, usually, it is your sponsor’s income that is taken into consideration, although this does depend upon which category of income you depend on.

For more information on the spouse visa UK financial requirements in 2024, check this article here.


iv) Accommodation requirements

This section looks at:

  • Whether you will be adequately maintained in the UK without recourse to public funds; and
  • Whether there is suitable accommodation available to you and your sponsor.

v) English language requirements

For out-of-country applications, you must show that you have passed an English language test in speaking and listening at a minimum of level A1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages with a provider that is on the list of Home Office approved Secure English language tests (SELT) in 2024.

Alternatively, there are some categories of applicants who are exempt from having to take the English language test (more information on this can be found here).


vi) Tuberculosis requirement

You may be required to provide a Tuberculosis (TB) certificate if you are a resident in one of these countries if you are submitting an out-of-country application.


vii) Payment of Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) fee

For out-of-country applications, you will be required to pay the IHS fee of £3,105 as part of your application

Only if your application meets all of the requirements above will your visa likely be granted.


For in-country applications (applications that are made from inside the UK)

For applications made inside of the UK under family and private life, you must meet the following overall requirements:

  • Suitability requirements
  • Relationship requirements
  • Financial requirements
  • Accommodation requirements
  • English language requirements
  • Payment of the Home Office fees and Immigration Health Surcharge

We elaborate more on the in-country requirements in our FLR M Visa 2024 Guidance: Spouse Visa Extensions & Renewals article.


#43 Does the spouse visa online application form website tell me the requirements that I have to meet?

The online application form will only highlight some of the requirements.

Unfortunately, the website is very brief about the requirements and does not discuss the requirements in detail.

To prepare your application and supporting evidence, we strongly encourage that you fully familiarise yourself with Appendix FM of the Immigration Rules.

Our DIY Application Pack service is also designed to help you ensure that you meet the relevant requirements as they apply to your circumstances.


#44 What if I am not sure whether I meet the spouse visa requirements?

It is incredibly important to know whether you meet the spouse visa requirements before you apply.

This is because where one requirement is not met, the starting position is that the application will be refused.

This will result in:

  • Negatively affecting future applications as they will be examined with more scrutiny; and
  • You losing out on the UK spouse visa fees.

#45 What is the minimum income threshold for spouse/partner applications?

For the majority of spouse/partner applications, the required level of income is £18,600 (gross).

We elaborate on the minimum income threshold in our spouse visa UK financial requirements 2024 article.


#46 What income can be included in the financial requirement?

Income that may be included to meet the financial requirement must be from the permitted sources below:

employment incomeEmployment income includes salaried and non-salaried employment from specified limited companies and non-specified limited companies.

It is very important to know whether the employing company is a specified or non-specified limited company as this will completely change the documents required – we discuss this in part 2 of our 3-part free video series.

For more information about the important distinction between specified and non-specified limited companies, check out our spouse visa UK financial requirements in 2024 guidance.

As we discuss in our article “Category A or B, F or G? [UK Visa Financial Requirements Guide]“, employment income can be included under Category A, B, F and G.

Knowing the correct category is incredibly important, so if you are in doubt, it will be a good idea to read the above articles!


self employment incomeSelf-employment has a very specific definition in UK immigration law.

Those who are self-employed are only self-employed as a sole trader, as a partner and or in a franchise.


dividend incomeDividend income can be included towards the financial requirement.

The requirements and the documents that you will need to submit will differ depending on whether the dividend income is from a ‘specified limited company’ or a ‘non-specified limited company’.


cash savings£62,500 is the amount generally required to meet the financial requirement solely from cash savings for you and your sponsor (this figure may differ if you are applying with dependents or if the adequate maintenance test applies).

Cash savings of over £16,000 but under £62,500 can be used to reduce the financial requirement.

As we discuss in part 3 of our 3-part video series, the Immigration Rules state that cash savings must be held in cash. There are a few exceptions to this rule which we also discuss in the video.

More information about the cash savings requirements can be found here.


Pension income received by you or your sponsor may be included, as long as specified documents to evidence this are submitted.


pension incomeRental income may be included, providing it meets certain requirements.


other sourcesThis is referred to as non-employment income and includes the following:

  • Dividends or other income from investments, bonds, trust funds or stocks and shares (from a non-specified limited company);
  • A maintenance grant or stipend (that is not a loan) which is given because of undergraduate or postgraduate research or study;
  • Widowed Parent’s Allowance, Bereavement Payment, Bereavement Allowance & UK Maternity Allowance;
  • Interest from savings;
  • Payments under the War Pensions Scheme, the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme and the Armed Forces Attributable Benefits Scheme;
  • On-going royalty payments;
  • On-going payments from a structured legal settlement;
  • On-going insurance payments.

#47 Can I combine different sources of income?

Some sources of income can be combined to meet the financial requirement.

Let us first clarify the categories:

Permitted source of income: Category:
Employment income from a non-specified limited company A
Employment income from a specified limited company F
Property income C
Other sources of income C
Cash savings D
Pension income E
Self-employment income or dividend from a specified limited company (last full financial year) F
Self-employment income or dividend from a non-specified limited company (last two full financial years) G

The categories that may be combined are as follows:

Income Can be combined with:
Category A Categories C, D, E, F & G
Category B Categories C, D, E, F & G
Category C Categories A, B, D, F & G
Category D Category A, B, C and D
Category E Categories A, B, C, D, F & G
Category F Categories A, B, C & E (as long as it falls within the relevant financial year)
Category G Categories A, B, C & E (as long as it falls within the relevant financial years)

It is difficult to summarise this in only two tables, so check out this article where we discuss this in more detail.

Furthermore, it is important to note that where Category F is combined with other categories, the relevant period changes – as we discuss in part 2 of our free video series.


#48 How do I calculate the income that can be used towards the financial requirement?

To calculate the income that can be used towards the financial requirement, you have to first select what permitted source of income you are using and then what category this falls under.

Once you have determined this, there are specific formulas that you can apply.

We discuss this in-depth in this article.

uk spouse visa full legal representation


#49 Is there an English language requirement for the UK spouse visa application?

Yes, there is an English language requirement for applications made from both outside the UK and also from inside the UK.

You will need to demonstrate that you have either:

1. Passed an English language test in speaking and listening at a minimum of level A1 of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages with a provider approved by the Secretary of State or that you meet the English language requirement or,

2. Hold an academic qualification that was taught in English and is recognised by Ecctis as being equivalent to a UK bachelor’s degree, master’s degree or PhD.

Note

For those who are extending their partner visa application from inside the UK after 2.5 years, the relevant level will be the A2 test.

You do not need to prove your knowledge of English if you fall under one of these exceptions:

Exception 1 – Majority English-speaking country

Nationals of Majority English speaking countries are nationals of…

  • Antigua and Barbuda;
  • Australia;
  • the Bahamas;
  • Barbados;
  • Belize;
  • The British Overseas Territories;
  • Canada;
  • Dominica;
  • Grenada;
  • Guyana;
  • Jamaica;
  • Malta;
  • New Zealand;
  • St Kitts and Nevis;
  • St Lucia;
  • St Vincent and the Grenadines;
  • Trinidad and Tobago; and
  • the USA.

Exception 2 – You are a child under 18 or an adult over 65 years of age


Exception 3 – You have a health condition that medically exempts you from meeting the requirement


#50 Can I sit a higher level English test than is strictly required?

If you have an intermediate or advanced level of English, then you should consider sitting a test at a higher level than needed because you will save time and money on English test fees in the long term.

The minimum level required for partner and parent routes is Level A1 or A2 CEFR (depending on whether it is your first application in that category) in English speaking and listening skills.

Paragraph 32D of Appendix FM-SE of the Immigration Rules reassures applicants that their English certificate test certificate will still be valid for application purposes even once it has expired, in the following circumstances:

  • If it is from a provider which is not on the approved list anymore, or
  • If it is from a provider which is still approved but the particular test taken with the provider is no longer approved, or
  • If it was taken in a test centre which is no longer approved, or
  • If it is past its expiry date.

#51 Do I need to take a Tuberculosis (TB) test for the spouse visa application?

For in-country spouse visa applications, Tuberculosis tests are not required.

For out-of-country spouse visa applications, however, this will depend on the applicant’s circumstances.

A Tuberculosis (TB) test will be mandatory if the applicant is making the application from outside the UK and are living in any of these listed countries (or if they have lived in one of those countries in the 6 months before applying).

What are the exceptions to this rule?

If the applicant falls in any of the categories below, they do not need to be tested for TB:

  • They are a diplomat accredited to the UK;
  • They are a returning UK resident and have not been away for more than 2 years; or
  • They lived for at least 6 months in a country where TB screening is not required by the UK, and they have been away from that country for no more than 6 months.

The TB test takes the form of a chest X-ray.

If the result of the X-ray is not clear, then you may also be asked to give a sputum sample (phlegm coughed up from your lungs).

If you do not have TB, you will be given a TB certificate which is valid for 6 months.

This certificate must be submitted with your visa application.

How do I pay the spouse visa Home Office fee?

The spouse visa fee can be paid by credit or debit card on the online spouse visa application form.

Is the spouse visa application form an online based one or is it paper-based?

The spouse visa application form is an online-based form. An exception applies to those who are applying from North Korea, who will have to use a paper-based form.

Do I need an immigration lawyer to submit the spouse visa application form?

There is no requirement to have an immigration lawyer to submit a spouse visa application. Although it can help, partners are perfectly able to prepare their own spouse visa applications – as long as they take the time to learn the relevant Immigration Rules.

How do I submit the application form?

The spouse visa application form is submitted by paying the Home Office fees on the online website. You will first have to provide you and your partner’s personal details in order to pay the fee.

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