Securing Fiancé Visa UK Approval marks the start of a life-changing journey. After receiving the Fiancé Visa UK Approval, you may experience a range of emotions and have several questions. You may wonder what steps to take next, how to navigate them, and how to ensure a smooth transition.
Understanding the post-approval landscape can be just as complex as the application process itself. Let’s explore what happens after your UK Fiancé Visa gets the green light and how you can seamlessly transition into this new chapter of your love story.
What to Expect After Your Fiancé Visa UK Approval?
The Fiancé Visa UK Approval is a monumental step in your journey towards marital bliss in the UK. But what exactly unfolds once you receive that much-anticipated approval?
The initial vignette placed in your passport will be valid for 30 days, which means you must travel to the UK within this timeframe. If, for some reason, you can’t travel within these 30 days, you’ll need to apply for a replacement vignette, which comes with an additional fee. Keep reading to find out detailed information on the subsequent steps.
Travel to the UK from Outside the UK
Once your fiancé visa UK approval is confirmed, the excitement of moving to the UK begins. Start by booking your flights. Make sure you choose a reputable airline that aligns with your travel dates.
Next, consider your accommodation. Whether you’re moving in with your partner or seeking temporary lodging, it’s essential to have a place to stay upon arrival. Remember, the visa process requires proof of accommodation, so ensure all arrangements align with your visa application details.
When you enter the UK, be prepared to present your passport and fiancé visa documentation to the border control officers. They might ask questions about your stay, your partner in the UK, and your marriage plans. It’s essential to answer honestly and have all relevant documents on hand, including your visa approval notice and any correspondence related to your visa application process.
6 Months Validity Until Marriage
After obtaining your UK Fiancé Visa, you’re granted the privilege to enter and reside in the UK for a span of 6 months. Within this timeframe, it’s mandatory to tie the knot with your partner from the UK.
To lawfully marry your partner in the UK, both participants should be 18 years or older. Prior to the main event, a formal declaration of your intent to wed should be presented at your nearest register office. This intention is then made public.
Ensure you have all the required documents: evidence of your identity, age, nationality, and residential address. If either individual was previously married, documentation verifying the legal end to that marriage, such as a divorce document or a death certificate, is essential.
Remember, the UK fiancé visa grants you a residence of half a year, and within this period, marriage is compulsory. Thus, it’s crucial to initiate wedding plans before or shortly after your arrival. Before the actual ceremony, there is a minimum waiting period of 28 days after declaring your intention to marry.
Organising your wedding within 3-4 months of your entry not only gives you sufficient time for preparations but also ensures adherence to visa stipulations.
Also Read: How Long Does a Spouse Visa Take in the UK?
Switching to a Spouse Visa
Once you’ve exchanged vows, the subsequent phase involves transitioning from a fiancé to a spouse visa. The UK spouse visa allows you to reside alongside your spouse and take employment in the UK. The UK spouse visa grants the applicant the privilege to live in the UK for 2.5 years, with the possibility of an extension for the same period.
The income threshold for all UK family visas is set to change, escalating from £18,600 to £29,000 on April 11th 2024 and then to £38,700 by early 2025. Changes to these financial requirements are a common practice by the UK government. Read our page on family visa financial requirements for current and detailed advice on complying with these financial criteria, or contact us directly.
Furthermore, you have to prove the authenticity of your relationship and intention of establishing a permanent residence together in the UK. Post-marriage, it’s reasonable to set the wheels in motion for the spouse’s visa application without delay.
The application process needs to be done online, and upon submission, you’ll receive guidance to schedule an appointment at a UK Visa centre facility for your biometric data submission. The processing duration for this visa application can fluctuate; the average wait time is between 2 and 3 months.
Meeting Spouse Visa Requirements
Securing a spouse visa is not just about the application form; it’s about meeting specific requirements that demonstrate the authenticity and stability of your relationship and your ability to settle in the UK.
1. Financial requirements
There will be an increase in the financial threshold for family visas in the UK, rising from £18,600 to £29,000 on April 11th 2024 and further to £38,700 by early 2025. This threshold is subject to regular modifications by the UK government. For the most recent information on how to fulfil these financial requirements, we encourage you to read our page on family visa financial requirements or get in touch with us.
There are different ways to meet this requirement, including employment, self-employment, savings, or a combination of these. It’s crucial to provide comprehensive evidence, like payslips, bank statements, or income tax returns, to substantiate your financial claims.
2. Accommodation arrangements
You must prove that there’s adequate accommodation available for you, your partner, and any dependents without recourse to public funds. This means showing that you have a place to live that’s not overcrowded and meets the “suitability” requirements. Evidence can include a tenancy agreement, mortgage statement, or a letter from a family member if you’re staying with relatives.
3. Relationship verification
The UK immigration authorities need assurance that your connection with your partner is unpretentious and subsisting. This involves providing documents that show you’ve been living together in the UK or evidence of your relationship’s longevity and authenticity. This can include pictures, correspondence, joint financial documents, or testimonies from family and friends.
Also Read: UK Fiance Visa Document Checklist
Extension and Indefinite Leave to Remain
Before the expiration of your initial spousal visa, you can apply for an extension, granting you another 2.5 years in the UK. The requirements remain largely the same, focusing on your relationship’s genuineness, the financial threshold, and the English language requirement.
After 5 years in the UK on a Spouse visa, including any extensions, you can apply for indefinite leave to remain (ILR). This will allow you to remain in the UK without any time constraints. Notably, you must continuously reside in the United Kingdom, satisfy English language and financial criteria, and take the “Life in the UK” test.
This test evaluates your knowledge of British customs, history, and traditions. Accomplishing ILR status is a significant milestone. It means you’re free from immigration constraints, can access public funds, and even start working to secure British citizenship.
Also Read: When to Apply for Spouse Visa Extension
Coming to the UK on a fiance visa and then going from fiancé to spouse in the UK is a journey filled with joyful moments, challenges, and milestones. While the process might seem daunting, being informed and prepared makes the journey smoother.
Remember, every couple’s story is unique, but with the right knowledge and support, you can navigate the UK’s immigration system successfully. For personalised advice and guidance, always consider consulting with immigration professionals or visiting official UK government websites.
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FAQs About UK Fiance Visas
Need Help with Your UK Visa Application?
Whether you are applying for a UK Fiance Visa or Spouse Visa, navigating through the intricacies of visas and immigration procedures can be overwhelming. That’s where Spouse Visa Lawyers can help. Our team has a strong reputation for providing personalised guidance and effective solutions, ensuring a smooth application process and easy transition from a Fiancé Visa to a Spouse Visa in the UK when the time is right.
Our experienced solicitors can assist you with the initial application, offer advice on complying with immigration rules, and support you with any unexpected challenges that may arise during the process. Contact Spouse Visa Lawyers today to take the first step towards a stress-free visa transition.
The information provided in our articles is intended solely for guidance and should not be considered legal advice. We do not assume responsibility for any liabilities arising from the information in written articles and recommend that all readers seek professional advice before taking any action. For those wishing to discuss their case with a professional, please feel free to contact us directly.
Dr Bernard Andonian has over four decades of experience as a London-based UK Immigration Solicitor and was also a former immigration Judge. He has been awarded a PhD in Law from the University of West London for his in-depth knowledge of UK immigration and nationality law. He has served on the Law Society Immigration Law Panel, achieved numerous groundbreaking decisions in higher courts whilst representing clients in the UK, and is featured in the Legal 500’s Hall of Fame.