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Applying for Visas for Extended Family

By: Louise Smith, barrister - Updated: 19 Feb 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Applying For Visas For Extended Family

The rules on applying for visas to bring extended family to live in the UK vary according to the nature of the relationship and the family member’s country of origin.

European Citizens

Nationals of countries in the European Union (EU), the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland generally have the right to live and work in the UK. This right is dependent on the European national being able to show that they will either be working in the UK or that they will otherwise be able to support themselves and their family without having to rely on public funds.

European nationals who satisfy the above criteria may bring with them to live in the UK the following family members:

  • Their spouse or civil partner;
  • Children or grandchildren of the European national or their spouse / civil partner – the children must be under 21 or dependent on the European national;
  • The parents or grandparents of the European national or of their spouse / civil partner – but not if the European national is a student.
European nationals may also be able to bring the following family members to the UK:
  • Unmarried partner – they will have to be able to prove that they are in an enduring relationship;
  • Extended family – brothers, sisters, cousins etc. may be eligible but only if they can prove that they are dependent on the European national.
Family members of European nationals who are not themselves nationals of the EU, EEA or Switzerland will have to apply for an EEA family permit before coming to the UK.

Children of Nationals of Other Countries

Children under the age of 18 may usually join their parent or parents to live in the UK if the parents are or will be legally settled there. The parents must be able to support their child without relying on public funds and must have sufficient accommodation for the child. The child must also be financially dependent on the parents, not be married and not have previously been living apart from their parents.

Extended Family Members of UK Residents

In some circumstances foreign nationals may be able to bring the following extended family members to the UK: parents, or widowed parent, where at least one is over the age of 65; grandparents, or a widowed grandparent, where one is over the age of 65. To qualify:
  • The relative must be financially dependent on their UK resident family member;
  • The relative must not have any other close family members who could look after them; and,
  • The UK resident must be able to support and house their relative without having to rely on public funds.

Parents or grandparents under the age of 65 may be able to qualify to live in the UK if the above conditions are satisfied and they live “in the most exceptional compassionate circumstances”.

Children over the age of 18, siblings, aunts, uncles or any other relative may also be able to qualify to live in the UK with their resident family member if they satisfy all of the previous conditions and live alone.

Applications for settlement visas for family members are generally made on form VAF 4 – Settlement or may be made online at the UK Border Agency’s website.

Refugees

A foreign national who has been granted refugee status or exceptional leave to remain in the UK may be able to bring their spouse, civil partner or unmarried partner and any dependent children under the age of 18 to the UK. These family members may qualify for UK “family reunion” entry clearance. Other extended family members do not necessarily qualify on this ground but may be given permission to come to the UK on compassionate grounds if they are dependent on the refugee.

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[Add a Comment]
posh - Your Question:
Iam british citizen and also a nurse. I have 2 children 4yr and 1yr old. Can I invite my aunt who is 55yrs old to look after my kids?

Our Response:
You would have to see the requirements laid out in the link here to see whether you qualify.
AboutImmigration - 20-Feb-18 @ 10:43 AM
Iam british citizen and also a nurse. I have 2 children 4yr and 1yr old. Can i invite my aunt who is 55yrs old to look after my kids?
posh - 19-Feb-18 @ 1:36 PM
Lisa - Your Question:
Hi, I am an EEA family permit holder, been in UK for 16 years. I am full-time employee and has has income over £18600. My husband and my income combine will be over £50.000 yearly. We are thinking to sponsor my niece to reside in UK but I have foundout that on 1st Feb 2017, new rule introduced for EEA family permit should be direct family of EEA citizen-not includes non eu spouse relatives, if this is true, is there any other way I can sponsor my 21 years old niece to reside to UK? Thanks in advance for your advise. I look forward for your reply.

Our Response:
Your 21-year-old niece would have to apply for a visa to come to the UK independently. You would not be able to sponsor her to come to the UK under a family visa.
AboutImmigration - 16-Feb-18 @ 12:49 PM
Sam - Your Question:
I'm a British citizen living in UK. My nephew lives in South America, his mother, my sister sadly passed away almost a year now. I don't know where his father is since he left my terminally ill sister a year prior to her death. My nephew is living with various family members but his main carer is my mum who is also too ill to take care of him full time. (Mum is recovering from a stroke). I've been sending money for my nephew upkeep for about two years now. My family are only interested in the money sent to care for him. Even a book or a pair or socks I have to buy for him. It saddens me that no one else is contributing to this lovely young boy (13 years). I have 2 brothers and a sister who can take him in but none wants to commit full time. I am married and we have 3 sons of our own 9, 11, 12 years old. We both work so can financially support another child as have been doing for some time now. Is there any visa route available to us so that my nephew can come and live with us in the UK? Many thanks.

Our Response:
You can adopt a child from overseas if: they can’t be cared for in a safe environment in their own country and/or the adoption would be in their best interests, please see link here.
AboutImmigration - 16-Feb-18 @ 10:27 AM
I'm a British citizen living in UK.My nephew lives in South America, his mother, my sister sadly passed away almost a year now. I don't know where his father is since he left my terminally ill sister a year prior to her death.My nephew is living with various family members but his main carer is my mum who is also too ill to take care of him full time.(Mum is recovering from a stroke).I've been sending money for my nephew upkeep for about two years now. My family are only interested in the money sent to care for him. Even a book or a pair or socks I have to buy for him.It saddens me that no one else is contributing to this lovely youngboy (13 years). I have 2 brothers and a sister who can take him in but none wants to commit full time. I am married and we have 3 sons of our own 9, 11, 12 years old.We both work so can financially support another child as have been doing for some time now. Is there any visa route available to us so that my nephew can come andlive with us in the UK?Many thanks.
Sam - 15-Feb-18 @ 1:16 AM
i live in Ghana and a Ghanaian citizen, i am married with a 2year old son. My mother who is a UK citizen would like for my son who is 2 years old to visit her for 2 months. My cousin who is also a Ghanaian and lives in Ghana want to sponsor my son for him to obtain his visa. my question is will it be allowed for my cousin to sponsor my son?
nana - 14-Feb-18 @ 12:57 PM
Hi, I am an EEA family permit holder, been in UK for 16 years. I am full-time employee and has has income over £18600. My husband and my income combine will be over £50.000 yearly. We arethinking to sponsor my niece to reside in UK but I have foundout that on 1st Feb 2017, new rule introduced for EEA family permit should be direct family of EEA citizen-not includes non eu spouserelatives, if this is true, is there any other way I can sponsor my 21 years old niece to reside to UK? Thanks in advance for your advise. I look forward for your reply.
Lisa - 13-Feb-18 @ 1:25 PM
@ADYBABY - Children born in the UK to visitor parents are not British citizens and do not qualify for British passports.
TJ. - 12-Feb-18 @ 7:29 AM
I had my child in 2005 as a visitor in UK.My husband has already paid all the medical bills for the CS done. We have a birth certificate for the child. He is coming over to uk to finish secondary school and will be living with the aunty who is a british citizen, How do we get a british passport for him as he is not upto 18 years?
ADYBABY - 11-Feb-18 @ 11:29 AM
Hello, TJthank for the this reply.@winner - EEA family permits can only cover dependant extended family relatives. It is unlikely that you and your wife can prove that you depend on your brother to sustain you TJ. - 9-Feb-18 @ 7:21 PM. Please do you know the documentsthat we needto aply EEAand how we can go about it.
winner - 10-Feb-18 @ 7:57 PM
@winner - EEA family permits can only cover dependant extended family relatives. It is unlikely that you and your wife can prove that you depend on your brother to sustain you
TJ. - 9-Feb-18 @ 7:21 PM
Hello, we are brazillianpassport holders, I my wife and our two children, can my brother who is Ireland citizen , help us to get EEA family permit in UK?
winner - 9-Feb-18 @ 12:51 PM
Mm - Your Question:
My father inlaw is a uk citizen and my husband too.my husbands salary is not up to the required amount for spouse visa.can his father who is my father inlaw bring me instead??

Our Response:
If you are applying as a partner or a spouse, only your partner or your spouse can apply to sponsor you.
AboutImmigration - 9-Feb-18 @ 9:37 AM
My father inlaw is a uk citizen and my husband too.my husbands salary is not up to the required amount for spouse visa.can his father who is my father inlaw bring me instead??
Mm - 8-Feb-18 @ 11:06 AM
@Aminul - If you are in the UK as the dependant of an EEA qualified person, the Home Office will cancel your permit if they find out that you are married. You should wait until you are a Permanent resident in the UK before you think of bringing your wife.
TJ. - 7-Feb-18 @ 6:36 PM
I have 5 years EEA residence card and my mother is an EEA qualified person living in the UK. Can she sponsor my wife who is her daughter in law living in Bangladesh as an extended family member?
Aminul - 7-Feb-18 @ 1:05 PM
@Nadk - unfortunately your brother cannot sponsor you to live in the UK. If you are a dual German citizen that would change.
TJ. - 6-Feb-18 @ 12:18 AM
Hi , Im canadian citizen , living in Canada , My brother is German citizen , moving to UK, my question is can he call me there in UK so i can live with him on permanent basis? Im unmarried .
Nadk - 5-Feb-18 @ 9:41 PM
@K. Owusu - Unless your niece qualifies for a visa in her own right it is unlikely that she will be allowed to come to the UK to take care of you.
TJ. - 18-Jan-18 @ 2:43 PM
I am disabled living in the uk with permanent residence. ..I am blind and living alone is very difficult.Can I invite my niece from Ghana to come and live with me and help me out by taking care of me?
K. Owusu - 18-Jan-18 @ 8:08 AM
@F10ona - you can't bring a nephew to the country - unless you plan to adopt your nephew - and then you can only apply to adopt if the child can’t be cared for in their own country by his parents or other relatives. The adoption process would be stringent. Otherwise families across the world would be applying for their children to come to the UK as a way of applying for their parents to come to the UK on the back of it. So it's not an easy process. Regards Jim.
JNR - 15-Jan-18 @ 11:29 AM
My partners nephew is struggling in India in the Tibetan refugee community. He lives with his parents there. He is 11 and we are wondering if it’s be possible to bring him to the UK to live with us?
F10ona - 14-Jan-18 @ 4:58 PM
@Elaine - it depends on who the child's day-to-day normal parent is. It's not likely it would be allowed if the child is thought to be settled in her own country with a resident parent. Ish.
Ish78 - 4-Jan-18 @ 12:29 PM
How do I apply for a visa for step daughter to come to the UK from Jamaica, I am married to her father who is on the 2ndchalf of his 5 year spouse visa.. We both work fulltime and have ample bedrooms for her to stay.. Can she also be allowed to go school?
Elaine - 3-Jan-18 @ 7:50 PM
My husband is on the 2nd part of his 5year spouse visa, We would like to send for his 15year old daughter from Jamaica What would be the "hic up" ?we both work full time and have more than enough bedrooms
Elaine - 3-Jan-18 @ 7:10 PM
@Safi - You cannot sponsor a spouse when you are on a dependant visa. In fact if the Home Office were to find out that you have a wife they will cancel your visa as you now have an independent life.
TJ. - 31-Dec-17 @ 1:56 AM
Hello My uncle is eu national and living and working in uk for last 8 years as doctor and me and my mother got dependent visa via my uncle when I was 17 now I’m 18 and I want sponsor my wife from Afghanistan at the moment I got 5 years FAMILY MEMBER OF EU RESIDENCE, Am I eligible to sponsor or not Thanks
Safi - 30-Dec-17 @ 10:37 AM
i am indian citizen ,i married to a person he is finnish national working at london. i want to join him. i can't understand which criteria visa should i apply to stay with him parmanently? please guide me.
godwin auntin - 24-Dec-17 @ 5:19 PM
@Fari if your husband's sister is not an EEA national and he applied after February 2017 his application will be refused. If your husband's sister is an EEA national and his application is approved he will not be able to sponsor you using that permit.
TJ. - 12-Dec-17 @ 10:40 AM
My husband applied EEA extended family member visa via his sister if he get this visa can he call his wife?? From non eu country??
Fari - 12-Dec-17 @ 1:51 AM
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