12 Apr How to give notice to marry and apply for a spouse visa?
If you would like to marry in the UK, you must sign a legal statement at your local marriage register office to indicate that you intend to marry or form a civil partnership. This is known as ‘giving notice’.
Please note that you have to give notice for at least 29 days before your ceremony, and you must hold your ceremony within 12 months of ‘giving notice’.
Fees for giving notice
You have to pay a fee to give notice office, and it is usually £35 per person. However, if you are either from outside the EU, EEA or Switzerland, or you need to apply for a visa to live in the UK, or you do not have a Marriage/ Civil Partnership Visitor visa or a fiancé(e) visa, the fees for giving notice are £47 per person.
Where to give notice?
You will need to make an appointment at your local register office, and you must have lived in the registration council for the last 7 days. Please note that you and your partner will need to give notice separately if you lived in different areas. However, you do not have to do it on the same day.
If either you or your partner are from outside the EU, EEA or from Switzerland, you must give notice together at a designated register office, even if you live at a different address. Please note that the register officer might notify the Home Office, and you may need to wait up to 70 days following further checks.
Can you give notice outside the UK?
If you are from or live in a country that has signed up to the ‘British Subjects Facilities Act’ you may be able to give notice in that country. Please note that your partner must be a British citizen or ILR holder. For more information about the register office, please refer to GOV.UK website: https://www.gov.uk/register-offices.
Supporting documents for giving notice
You must bring originals of the following documents to your appointment:
- details of the final venue for your ceremony
- a valid passport, UK birth certificate or national identity card from the EU, EEA or Switzerland
- proof of your home address (for example, driving licence, bills, bank statement, council tax, mortgage statement, tenancy agreement etc)
- proof of any name changes (for example, a copy of a deed poll)
Please note that if you have been married or in a civil partnership before, you have to provide:
- a decree absolute or final order, or
- your former partner’s death certificate
In addition, you need to bring proof of your divorce, annulment or dissolution if it was granted outside of the UK, Channel Islands or Isle of Man. You will have to pay a fee of £50 for the local register office to check your documents or £75 if the General Register Office needs to check them.
If either you or your partner are a non-EEA national, you also need to provide:
- a passport sized photo for each of you (even if only one of you is from outside the EU, EEA or from Switzerland);
- proof of your current immigration status (for example, your fiancé visa);
- a translation of any documents that are not in English.
How to apply for a spouse visa?
A spouse/ partner visa, is a type of ‘settlement’ visa, as eventually it can lead to permanent residence in the UK, and it is a prerequisite to apply for a British passport under section 6 (1) or 6 (2). A partner includes “husband, wife, civil partner, unmarried or same-sex partner” of a British citizen or ILR holder. This visa allows you to live in the UK for up to 33 months and can be extended for another 30 months.
The requirements of the spouse visa application
The main requirements of the spouse/ partner visa include proof that you are in a genuine relationship and that the UK sponsor earns at least £18,600 per year.
Other requirements are:
- You meet the English requirement- passing an approved English language test with at least CEFR level A1 in speaking and listening, or having an academic qualification that was taught in English and is recognised by UK NARIC as being equivalent to a UK bachelor’s degree, master’s degree or PhD, or you are a national of a majority English speaking country;
- Evidence of the ‘genuine relationship’
- Your tuberculosis test (TB test) results if you are resident in a country listed under Appendix T of the Immigration Rules;
- Financial requirement- the financial threshold will vary depending on your situation or if you are applying with dependant children
For more detailed information about the requirements for the spouse visa application, please contact us.
Contact Our Immigration Experts
For expert advice regarding any aspect of the spouse visa category, or assistance in the planning and preparation of your spouse visa application, please contact our immigration team on 0203 384 3075 or contact us here.