UK Family Visa for Non-EEA Nationals
Family visas are available to non-EEA nationals living outside the UK. You can apply for an EEA family permit from outside the UK to join your spouse, fiancé, partner, child, parent or a relative that you’re depending on for long-term care.
Types of Family Visa UK
If you’re a non-EEA national intending to stay in the UK for longer than six months, you will need to apply for a UK family visa. You will need to meet one of the following criteria to apply:
- Your family member or spouse is a UK citizen
- Your family member or spouse has indefinite leave to remain or settled status in Britain
- You have a genuine relationship with an individual based in the UK with humanitarian protection or refugee status
If you currently live in the UK on a different type of visa, you could be eligible to switch to a family visa to remain in the UK with a child, fiancé or partner.
Different types of family visa are available to you, depending on your relationship with a person with UK settled status, including:
UK Spouse Visa
UK spouse visas are available to those who are married to, or the partner of, a British citizen or someone with settled status in the UK. A family spouse visa is valid for two and a half years, initially. It is then possible to apply to extend your stay for a further two and half years. After five years, you could be eligible for settled status in the UK.
Spouse Visa UK Requirements
To apply for a UK family spouse or partner visa, the following criteria must be met:
- You and your partner must be over the age of 18 years old
- Your relationship must be genuine
- You intend to remain in the UK for a minimum of two and a half years
Should you apply for this visa as a fiancé, your time in the UK is limited to six months. You will need to marry your fiancé in this time or you risk being deported for failing to adhere to the visa requirements.
Under the UK spouse visa, you can include any dependent children in your application.
Further requirements include:
- Proof that you can meet the £18,600 earnings threshold. This increases by £3,800 if you include one dependent child as part of your application. A further £2,400 each is charged for any additional children.
- Having a good understanding of the English language
If your application is for a disabled sponsor spouse visa in the UK or you’re over 65, you are exempt from the English language requirement.
Dependent Child Visa
A parent or guardian can apply for a UK family visa for dependent children as part of their own application or separately. For a child to qualify for a UK family visa, they must be under the age of 18 at the time an application was made. The child must be a dependent and not have their own family.
Parents or guardians must meet minimum income thresholds to bring a child to the UK. After five years in Britain, children could be eligible for UK naturalisation.
Dependent Adult Visa
If you’re 18 or over and you intend to live and work in the UK on a family visa, you could qualify for an adult dependent visa. The dependent adult visa is exclusively for parents, grandparents or the adult child of a British citizen seeking entry into the UK.
Only under exceptional circumstances can you apply for this visa. Typically, this visa is obtained by non-EEA nationals who need to provide long-term care for a relative living in the UK.
The adult dependent visa allows you to stay in the UK indefinitely, provided that the person based in the UK is a citizen or has settled status. Plus, if your relative has refugee status or humanitarian status in the UK, you’re entitled to remain indefinitely.
To qualify for this visa, you must:
- Demonstrate that adequate care is unavailable in your own country and you need to move to the UK to support your relative
- Be over the age of 18
- Be related to a person who is a British citizen or has settled status in the UK
Ancestry Visa UK
The UK ancestor visa is reserved for those whose grandparents were born in Britain. You could qualify for a five-year ancestry visa by way of your grandparents, enabling you to live, work or study in Britain. After five years you could be eligible for UK settled status.
How Our Specialist UK Family Visa Lawyers Can Help
For more than 20 years we have been helping families reunite by securing UK immigration status for non-EEA spouses, fiancés, children, parents and relatives. With proven procedures and processes in place and a network of immigration lawyers and barristers, we give you the support you need to secure a UK family visa.
From help completing your application to submitting it to the Home Office, we’re with you every step of the way. In most cases we can send your application on the same day. For a free, UK family visa eligibility assessment, speak to our specialist London family visa lawyers. Call ++44 (0)207 629 3633.