USA and the UK
- Am I eligible to travel from America to the UK to get married?
- How can I meet the financial requirements?
- What information do I need to include in my Fiance Visa application?
- Fiance Visa portfolio of evidence, fees and application process
- What happens if my application is approved?
- How do I switch to a UK Spouse Visa?
- Frequently asked questions
What is the UK Fiance Visa?
If you and your partner intend to live together in the UK as a married couple or as civil partners, you could be eligible for the UK Fiance Visa.
The Fiance Visa is specifically designed to enable individuals from outside the UK to marry or enter into a civil partnership with their UK partner, and to remain in the country afterwards. Their partner must be either a British citizen or a person with settled status in the UK.
A UK Fiance Visa holder is permitted to stay in the UK for up to six months. The Fiance Visa is granted under the expectation that you will get married or enter into a civil partnership within that six-month time period.
It is important to bear in mind that you must switch to another form of immigration permission after your Fiance Visa expires. The most natural switch is to the UK Spouse Visa, which affords holders the benefits of 30 months of residence in the UK along with the freedom to work and/or study in the UK, without restrictions.
Am I Eligible to Travel from America to the UK to Get Married/Enter into a Civil Partnership?
There are certain conditions and requirements attached to the UK Fiance Visa for both yourself and your UK partner. These include:
- Both you and your UK partner must be at least 18
- It is imperative that you get married within the six-month timeframe of your Fiance Visa
- Your fiancé must be a UK citizen or a person with settled status
- You need to provide evidence which demonstrates that your relationship is genuine
- You must have met your partner in-person before the date of your application
- You must intend to live with your partner in the UK
- Your UK partner (who will be your sponsor) must be earning at least £18,600 annually, or can meet the financial requirement through other means
- You need to show that you have suitable accommodation to live in the UK with your partner (and any dependents)
How Can I Meet the Financial Requirements?
You will need to prove that you meet certain financial requirements as part of the Fiance Visa application process. You need to demonstrate to the UK Home Office that you will not become a financial burden on the UK welfare system.
The minimum financial requirement threshold currently stands at £18,600. If you have any dependent children who will be joining you in the UK, you must show evidence of an additional £3,800 for your first child and £2,400 for each child you have after your fist child.
The most common way of proving your financial means is through the annual income which both you and your partner earn. However, the financial requirement can be proven through other means too. These include:
- Through statutory sick pay, maternity, paternity or adoption pay
- Stocks or shares
- Property financial gains such as rental payments
- Pension payments
It is important to take into account that you cannot work in the UK as a Fiance Visa holder. You can only enter into employment after you switch from the Fiance Visa to a longer-term immigration permission, such as the Spouse Visa.
What Information do I Need to Include in my Fiance Visa Application?
As part of the application process, you will need to submit a portfolio of evidence to prove you meet the eligibility criteria for the UK Fiance Visa. You will need to provide information about yourself, your partner and dependents.
The specific information which you need to include depends somewhat on your particular circumstances.
Some of the information you will need to provide includes:
- Your name and date of birth
- Information about the relationship you have with your UK partner, including how long you have lived together, how you met and how often you see each other
- If you have visited the UK before, you will need to provide details of those visits
- Copies of the photo page of your passport and any dependent’s passport
- Divorce certificates if you have been in a previous marriage
- Details of anyone you were previously married to and any children you had together
- Details of any criminal convictions
- Certain details of your parents
Usually, you will also need to provide similar information relating to your partner and any dependents who you will be travelling with you from the U.S to the UK.
How Do I Prepare my Portfolio of Evidence for the Fiance Visa?
If you think you are eligible for the Fiance Visa, the first step is to prepare your portfolio of evidence with all required documentation. However, it can be difficult to know exactly what you need to include in your portfolio of evidence.
For this reason, we highly recommend employing the services of immigration legal professionals. Our immigration attorneys can help you with the difficult process of preparing your portfolio of evidence.
We will assess your individual case and circumstances and inform you of all the information you will need to include in your portfolio of evidence. We can also complete the UK Fiance Visa application form for you, ensuring that it adheres to all necessary administrative standards.
Call our immigration attorneys now on +1 844 290 6312 for more information on how we can help you secure your UK Fiance Visa as an American.
UK Fiance Visa Application Fee and Processing Time
The fee for the UK Fiance Visa application is £1,523. If you have any dependents on your application, you will need to pay an extra £1,523 for each dependent. You will need to pay an extra £3,250 if there are any adult dependents who you wish to include in your application.
The processing time for the application varies depending on the particular case. UK immigration officials might request additional information or documents if they deem it to be necessary. This will, of course, delay the process.
In the vast majority of cases, your Fiance Visa application should be processed within 12 weeks of the date it is received.
What Happens if my Application is Approved?
If your Fiance Visa is accepted, you will be granted permission to enter the UK for up to six months.
Bear in mind that you will still need to report to border control when you arrive in the UK. It is very important that you bring photocopies of the key documents in your Fiance Visa application with you when you travel to the UK.
As alluded to above, you must get married/enter into a civil partnership with your UK partner within the six-month timeframe of the Fiance Visa.
Also, the visa is granted with the expectation that you will live with your partner in the UK after you have married/entered into a civil partnership. However, you will need to switch to a long-term UK immigration permission when your Fiance Visa expires. This will effectively complete the emigration process from the U.S to the UK.
How Do I Switch to a UK Spouse Visa?
As mentioned above, after your Fiance Visa expires, you will be able to apply for a Spouse Visa. You will still need to go through the standard Spouse Visa application process.
The UK Spouse Visa is a particularly attractive immigration permission as it affords Americans (and other non-EEA nationals) the right to work and/or study in the UK without restrictions. In fact, it is one of the most sought-after visas form those who wish to emigrate from America to the UK.
The Spouse Visa lasts for two and a half years. You can apply for a Spouse Visa extension when your original Spouse Visa expires, which lasts for a further two and a half years. At the end of this period, you will be able to apply for permanent residence in the UK, otherwise known as Indefinite Leave to Remain.
With Indefinite Leave to Remain status, you are able to stay in the UK without any immigration conditions imposed. After one year of Indefinite Leave to Remain status, you will be eligible for British citizenship.
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The Fiancé Visa requirements include proving that:
- Your intentions to marry or enter a civil partnership are genuine;
- Your relationship is legitimate and long-lasting; and
- You are able to fund your journey and meet the financial expectation
If you do not intend to marry within six months, you will need to apply for the Unmarried Partner Visa. This has slightly different expectations from the Fiancé or Proposed Civil Partner Visa.
Generally speaking, you cannot get a Fiance Visa extension.
However, in rare circumstances, you might be granted a Fiance Visa extension if there are circumstances beyond your control which have prevented you from getting married/entering into a civil partnership.
The same requirements will need to be fulfilled if you want to apply for a UK Fiance Visa extension, and your circumstances must not have changed significantly.
Like most UK visas, you can apply for the Fiancé Visa from inside the UK.
This might be useful for those who need a short-term extension on their leave before they get married.
You will still need to show that you intend to get married within six months of receiving your Fiance Visa. You must also apply for a Spouse Visa at the earliest opportunity once you are married.
When applying for the Fiancé or Proposed Civil Partner Visa, it is vital to fill out the forms properly. It is also important to provide enough evidence that your relationship is genuine. This type of visa has a high refusal rate because applicants fail to provide substantial or legitimate evidence.
We understand that this can be a stressful process. We aim to provide a service which guides you through each step carefully and respectfully.
Our services include:
- Consulting in person, over the phone or via Skype;
- Assessing your eligibility for this type of visa;
- Undertaking a full document check and organizing your evidence portfolio;
- Providing a personalized Letter of Representation. A document which provides details of your case supported by relevant UK immigration law;
- Liaising with the Entry Clearance Office until a decision is reached;
- Fully completing your application form(s) to the highest standard.
To speak with one our experienced immigration lawyers about your Fiancé Visa or Proposed Civil Partner Visa, contact us today online or by calling +1844 290 6312. Or visit UK immigration advice for U.S. citizens for further information about moving to the UK from the U.S.
A permanent resident is someone who has settled status in the UK. This means that they can live in the UK indefinitely without any immigration conditions imposed on them.
Indefinite Leave to Remain is the most common form of permanent residence. A UK resident can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain after they have legally lived in the country for five years and in some circumstances, just three years.
Americans can apply for British citizenship after they have spent twelve months living in the UK under Indefinite Leave to Remain status.
You will need to get married within the six-month time period of your Fiance Visa. If there are any unforeseen circumstances which prevent you from getting married, you could be granted a Fiance Visa extension.
The UK Marriage Visa is an immigration permission which permits Americans and non-EEA nationals to marry/enter into a civil partnership in the UK, but not to settle in the country afterwards.
It costs £95 to apply for this visa and you and you can stay in the UK for up to six months. However, you cannot extend this visa and dependents cannot join you under the Marriage Visa either.
Also, you cannot switch to another immigration permission in the UK if you are living under a Marriage Visa. You will need to leave the UK and travel back to America to apply for a different immigration permission in order to emigrate from America to the UK.
It is important to bear in mind that you cannot marry your partner in the UK if you travel to the UK under a Standard Visitor Visa. You could potentially make arrangements for your wedding/civil partnership, but you will need to leave the UK and apply for a Fiance Visa to marry in the UK.
One of the key requirements of the Fiance Visa application is the genuine relationship requirement. You and your partner must be able to demonstrate that you are in a genuine relationship through providing certain information and documents.
You may need to provide the following information, for example:
- Bank statements of joint accounts
- Reference letters from family, friends or professional people who can vouch for your relationship
- Birth certificates if you have had any children together
Our immigration attorneys are here to offer full assistance with UK Fiance Visa applications. We can help you to establish all the information and documentation which you will need to include in your portfolio of evidence to prove your relationship is genuine.
Call us now on +1 844 290 6312 for expert immigration legal advice.