How Much Does a UK Spousal Visa Cost

How Much Does a UK Spousal Visa Cost

The Spouse visa is a popular UK visa allowing individuals to join their married or unmarried partners in the UK. Whether you apply from abroad or switch to a Spouse visa from the UK, couples can easily be united with the Spouse visa.

But with visa changes coming into place in Spring 2024, we’ll explore how much a Spouse visa is and everything else you need to know.

What Is a Spouse Visa?

What Is a Spouse Visa?

A Spouse visa is a type of Family visa that allows partners, spouses and civil partners to come to live in the UK with their partner. Both applicants must be over 18, in a committed relationship and intend to live together permanently once in the UK.

To apply for a Spouse visa, your partner must also either:

  • Be a British or Irish citizen
  • Have indefinite leave to remain, settled status or pre-settled status
  • Have a Turkish Businessperson visa or Turkish Worker visa
  • Have protection status (permission to stay as a refugee or a person with humanitarian protection)
  • Have permission to stay as a stateless person

To be eligible for the Spouse visa, you must therefore prove either:

  • You’re married or in a civil partnership
  • You’ve been living together for at least 2 years
  • You’re engaged to be married and will get married within 6 months of being in the UK
  • You’ve been in a relationship for at least 2 years but cannot live together

When you apply, you must submit an online application form with supporting documents proving your relationship status, financial status and knowledge of the English language. You’ll also have to pay an application fee and the immigration health surcharge.

How Much Does a Spouse Visa Cost?

How Much Does a Spouse Visa Cost?

Each applicant must pay an application fee and the immigration health surcharge (IHS) when applying for the Spouse visa, so if you’re bringing dependant children to the UK with you to join your partner, they must also pay the application fee.

The Spouse visa costs £1,846 on the first application from outside of the UK, and the IHS costs £3,105. You may also pay an extra £500 for a quicker service, and receive a response on your application within 30 days.

You can switch to a Spouse visa while in the UK if you start a relationship with an eligible sponsor while studying or working, as long as you meet each of the requirements. So if you’re applying for the first time from the UK, or extending your Spouse visa from the UK, the application fee is £1,048 and the IHS is £2,587.50 for visa extensions.

However, as well as needing to pay the various fees, you’ll also need to meet minimum income requirements or show you have sufficient savings in your bank to look after yourself and your partner as well as any dependant children.

How Much Bank Balance is Needed for a Spouse Visa?

As you need to demonstrate your ability to provide for yourself and any dependants while in the UK, you need to either meet the threshold for income or savings when you apply for the Spouse visa.

Currently, you and your partner must have a combined income of at least £18,600 a year, however, in Spring 2024, new changes are coming into place with the Spouse visa threshold. From Spring 2024, the minimum collective income for the Spouse visa will be £29,000, which is then expected to rise to £34,500 in the Autumn of the same year, and reach £38,700 in Spring 2025. Changes may still happen later in the year, however, this is the expected rise according to the House of Commons Library.

However, it is not clear what changes will be made to the savings equivalent or necessary extra income for dependant children. Currently, if you have children who are not British or Irish citizens or have permanent residency in the UK, you need to earn an extra £3,800 a year for one child, and £2,400 extra per year for each other child. If you don’t have sufficient income, you can still apply if you demonstrate you have cash savings of over £16,000. This figure is also expected to rise with the income threshold but exact plans have not been laid out so far.

To meet the savings requirement, you must show that sufficient funds have been in your bank account for at least the last 28 days before you apply, known as the 28-day rule, to show the money is yours and will be accessible once you’re in the UK.

What Documents Are Needed for Spouse Visa?

What Documents Are Needed for Spouse Visa?

When you apply for your Spouse visa, you need to provide supporting documents to prove your identity, your relationship and information on your personal history.

You’ll need to provide:

  • Your current passport (with a blank page for your visa)
  • Copies of the photo page and other visas or entry stamps in previous passports
  • A copy of your biometric residence permit if you have one
  • Information on any previous criminal history if you have one, or evidence that you don’t
  • Your parents’ date of birth and nationality if you’re applying from outside the UK
  • A negative tuberculosis test result if you’re applying from one of the listed countries
  • Valid translations of any documents not in English or Welsh with details of the translator

To confirm your relationship with your partner, you need to provide evidence from a reputable source confirming your relationship, such as utility bills, tenancy agreements or bank statements with both your names on, or a marriage certificate. If you don’t live together, you can still apply, however, you need to provide evidence of why you don’t live together such as an employment contract, study enrollment letter or cultural reasons. You will also need to show that you communicate regularly and spend time together as a couple.

Getting Your Spouse Visa

Getting Your Spouse Visa

Once you have submitted your application form and supporting documents, and paid the application fee and IHS, you will receive a response on your application from the Home Office within 24 weeks. If there is something missing in your application, or the Home Office wishes to interview you to assess your character or English language abilities, the application process may take longer, but you’ll be notified of each step.

If you apply from inside the UK or extend your Spouse visa from the UK, you can expect a decision within 8 weeks, although you can pay £1000 to receive a decision within 5 working days. You can also extend your Spouse visa after divorce, with different eligibility requirements.

If successful, you’ll be granted permission to reside in the UK for 2 years and 9 months; if you’re applying as a proposed partner (fiancé, fiancée or proposed civil partner) you will be granted 6 months in the UK. Before your visa expires, you should extend your visa to continue living in the UK. Once extended, you’ll be granted permission to reside in the UK for another 2 years and 6 months.

Once in the UK, you can live, work and study until your visa expires with no restriction. The IHS also allows you to access NHS services, although you cannot access public funds until you have British citizenship.

Can You Apply for Citizenship with a Spouse Visa?

You can apply for British citizenship once you have been living in the UK for at least 5 years on a valid visa, and spent 12 months in the UK with indefinite leave to remain i.e. permanent residency.

To apply for indefinite leave to remain, you must have lived in the UK continually for 5 years with your partner, and spent no more than 450 days during that time outside of the UK, or more than 180 days within the last 12 months before your application. You will have to pass the Life in the UK test to show your knowledge of British culture, traditions, history and values, as well as meet financial requirements and demonstrate your desire to stay in the UK.

Need Visa Help? Contact Synergy Immigration Solutions

If you need help applying for a Spouse visa, the team at Synergy Immigration Solutions is here to help. Contact us today to learn more about how we help individual applications and read our privacy notice to see how we process your data.

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