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Marrying a UK Citizen

By: Louise Smith, barrister - Updated: 13 Jun 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Marrying A Uk Citizen

Marrying a UK citizen will generally entitle a foreign national to live and work in the UK. However, this entitlement is not automatic and there is certainly no immediate entitlement to citizenship for a foreign spouse.

Marriage Visitor Visas

If you want to get married or register a civil partnership in the UK, you can apply for a Marriage Visitor Visa. However, you will not be permitted to stay or settle in the UK after your marriage or civil partnership longer than the permitted six months. Any individual coming to the UK to marry must be 18 or over, be in a genuine relationship and plan to enter into a civil partnership in the UK within six months of arrival. Once the person leaves the UK at the end of the term, if they wish to apply to live in the UK they will need to apply for a new visa.

Family of a Settled Person Visa ('Spouse' Visa )

You’ll need a Family of a Settled Person Visa if you’re from outside the European Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland and you want to come to the UK to live with your spouse, civil partner or partner, who is legally permanently resident in the UK. There are strict financial and other eligibility requirements attached to this visa and you have to ensure both you and your spouse fully meet these in order to be able to apply. With this visa you will be able to work and/or study, but you will not be entitled to apply for public funds.

If you come to the UK with this visa, then if you continue to meet the requirements of your stay, you can apply to extend your existing ‘family of a settled person’ visa to 'remain with family' in the UK.

New restrictions have been imposed because some foreign nationals marry British citizens, or residents, purely so that they will be granted leave to remain in the UK and subsequently be in a position to apply for citizenship. To reduce the incidence of foreign nationals marrying UK citizens to obtain leave to remain, people who are subject to immigration control are strictly scrutinised by the UKVI.

Forced Marriages Involving British Citizens

In recent years growing concerns have been voiced on the subject of foreign nationals marrying UK citizens in forced marriages. Typically these involve male British citizens going abroad and marrying a foreign national who he may not previously have met and then bringing her back to live in the UK. In many cases at least one member of the couple will not have been aware that they were to be married. Girls may be plucked out of a village, unable to speak English and with absolutely no knowledge of UK life, and brought to live in a foreign country with a complete stranger.

The British government has made it a stated intention, through its Forced Marriage Unit, to reduce the number of forced marriages involving British citizens. Further new rules for foreign nationals marrying UK citizens will include requiring the foreign national to agree, before they come to the UK and to learn English after they arrive. If it is discovered that a foreign national has misused the marriage visa system their leave to remain in the UK may be removed. The UKVI has been given greater powers to deal with those who abuse the system and more guidance in spotting possible victims of forced marriages. Forcing someone to marry can result in a sentence of up to seven years in prison.

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Hi I'm gettingarrived to a pakistan man who lives in pakistan but has a UK visa for two years now..he will live in uk with me..what will we need to be able to get married in uk
My name marie lang - 13-Jun-18 @ 10:20 PM
I'm Latvian citizen,I live in England for ten years,I love African woman,I want to get her to live,what i should i to do,please say it thanks Normunds.
Niks - 6-Jun-18 @ 8:51 PM
i am from pakistan and my uncles and mami and grand father and mother and his all family living my cousins i want to come uk and i like my cousin and she want to marry me. but i want to come here and my age is 16 year plzz take there i am not need time west here
viky - 6-Jun-18 @ 12:34 PM
I am a British citizen living in Spain I want to get married to my Brazilian partner who is resident here in Spain is there any extra paper work I need from uk as he is a non eu citizen
lau08 - 5-Jun-18 @ 11:23 AM
I am a uk citizen and my girlfriend comes from Ghana we are planning to get married in the uk (Scotland) what is her status when we get married and what kind of visa must she have to come over to uk
Paulie - 1-Jun-18 @ 7:12 AM
My daughter plans to marry a South African man in the UK in December; he does not have UK citizenship, only South African. They are currently living in New Zealand, and will return there after the wedding. What visa should he apply for?
Jonnie - 31-May-18 @ 5:02 PM
kaz - Your Question:
I recently got married, I am a British Citizen and my wife has a Pakistani passport but has been living in the UK for over 14 years, she has a UK bio-metric visa which states leave to remain. How can we apply for British citizenship for her.

Our Response:
You can see more via the link here, which should help answer your question.
AboutImmigration - 24-May-18 @ 1:01 PM
G - Your Question:
As previously asked with no response returned:Hi, I am a male British citizen currently completing my studies to become a nurse. I am in a relationship with my partner from India for almost 2 years now. We met in 2016 whilst he was here in the UK at university. Ever since he graduated in July 2017, we have been doing a long distance relationship, however, we are planning that he comes back to the UK in September 2018 to complete a masters and we are intending on getting married. During the time in which he completes his masters, halfway through the year in March 2019 I qualify as a nurse and therefore will start earning more than £18,600. This will enable me to sponsor him to remain as my spouse. However, a few queries I have are: 1) how long must I be earning £18,600 for to be able to prove that I ? - is 6 months sufficient? Or have these regulations changed? 2) Is he able to switch from a student visa to a spouse visa within the UK, without leaving to go back to India to have to do this? When would the best time be to submit application for him to transfer visas?Many Thanks.

Our Response:
You would have to show six months of payslips in order to qualify. All the information is laid out in the gov.uk link here will answer all your questions, you just have to read it carefully.
AboutImmigration - 24-May-18 @ 11:46 AM
As previously asked with no response returned: Hi, I am a male British citizen currently completing my studies to become a nurse. I am in a relationship with my partner from India for almost 2 years now. We met in 2016 whilst he was here in the UK at university. Ever since he graduated in July 2017, we have been doing a long distance relationship, however, we are planning that he comes back to the UK in September 2018 to complete a masters and we are intending on getting married. During the time in which he completes his masters, halfway through the year in March 2019 I qualify as a nurse and therefore will start earning more than £18,600. This will enable me to sponsor him to remain as my spouse. However, a few queries I have are: 1) how long must I be earning £18,600 for to be able to prove that I ? - is 6 months sufficient? Or have these regulations changed? 2) Is he able to switch from a student visa to a spouse visa within the UK, without leaving to go back to India to have to do this? When would the best time be to submit application for him to transfer visas? Many Thanks.
G - 23-May-18 @ 1:15 AM
I recently got married, I am a British Citizen and my wife has a Pakistani passport but has been living in the UK for over 14 years, she has a UK bio-metric visa which states leave to remain. How can we apply for British citizenship for her.
kaz - 22-May-18 @ 4:36 PM
Dave- Your Question:
I am a UK citizen from a UK family and l am getting married to my Norwegian girlfriend what are her rights to NHS treatment etc once we are married?

Our Response:
The NHS operates a residence-based healthcare system and not every person is entitled to free NHS treatment in England. Provision of free NHS treatment is on the basis of being ordinarily resident and is not dependent upon nationality. You can see more via the NHS link here , which should help answer your question.
AboutImmigration - 22-May-18 @ 11:22 AM
@Dave - Norwegians are entitled to work and live in the UK without restriction just like British citizens. Once your partner is a resident in the UK she will be entitled to the free services under the NHS.
TJ. - 22-May-18 @ 9:38 AM
I am a UK citizen from a UK family and l am getting married to my Norwegian girlfriend what are her rights to NHS treatment etc once we are married?
Dave - 21-May-18 @ 4:18 PM
Hi I'm a married uk British citizen but my marriage ain't registered only islamically but my husband has gone and married a romanian women who to my knowledge is married in romania also. Is that possible
Nish - 19-May-18 @ 4:33 PM
Nat - Your Question:
I am a British born citizen, married to a Polish National. He has lived in the UK 14years, and has a Polish passport. We have been married 6years, can he apply for a British Passport?Will he automatically get Citizenship?Thank you

Our Response:
You can see more via the gov.uk link here , which will tell you all you need to know.
AboutImmigration - 11-May-18 @ 11:23 AM
I am a canadian citizen and married to a UK citizen would I be able. To apply for citizenship or would I have to be residing in the Uk?
John - 11-May-18 @ 11:03 AM
I am a British born citizen, married to a Polish National. He has lived in the UK 14years, and has a Polish passport. We have been married 6years, can he apply for a British Passport? Will he automatically get Citizenship? Thank you
Nat - 10-May-18 @ 8:57 AM
@Hannah - Your application for a fiancee family visa will likely be refused if you have never met your future spouse so you might want to leave that out of the apllication. However if it is granted you will be able to upgrade to a spouse family visa while in the UK which is unlike a marriage visitor visa which requires you to leave. If you do not meet the minimum income requirements you can apply for a family visa under the 10 year route renewable every 2.5 years
TJ. - 10-May-18 @ 6:15 AM
My fiancé, a British citizen on Carer’s Allowance, and I have been together for 3yrs but haven’t met. I’m from the US. We want to get married and I want to settle in the UK. I know I have to apply as a fiancée for a family visa which would allow me to stay for 6months. My question is once we’re married do I still have to go home when those 6months are up or can I reapply for that same family visa as a spouse and once that’s granted be able to settle for 2.5years? Also does his Carer’s allowance exempt us from the minimum income requirement?
Hannah - 9-May-18 @ 5:17 PM
If i got married with UK citizen then how many days i required to become permanent citizen of Uk?
Sadam - 6-May-18 @ 4:58 PM
Hi, I'm a Pakistani national born and raised in the UAE and working in Dubai on a residence visa. I'm getting married to a British citizen born and raised in London and she wants to move over to Dubai post marriage. The wedding is supposed to take place in London on 31st August. I have 2 questions as of now: 1) Can i get an ILR or permanent residency as soon as i get married while staying in Dubai? 2) For our future kids to have British passports do they have to be born in the uk? Or will they be granted a passport upon being born in the UAE
umer - 2-May-18 @ 2:55 PM
Hi, I am a male British citizen currently completing my studies to become a nurse. I am in a relationship with my partner from India for almost 2 years now. We met in 2016 whilst he was here in the UK at university. Ever since he graduated in July 2017, we have been doing a long distance relationship, however, we are planning that he comes back to the UK in September 2018 to complete a masters and we are intending on getting married. During the time in which he completes his masters, halfway through the year in March 2019 I qualify as a nurse and therefore will start earning more than £18,600. This will enable me to sponsor him to remain as my spouse. However, a few queries I have are: 1) how long must I be earning £18,600 for to be able to prove that I ? - is 6 months sufficient? Or have these regulations changed? 2) Is he able to switch from a student visa to a spouse visa within the UK, without leaving to go back to India to have to do this?
G - 2-May-18 @ 1:32 AM
Gordon Bath - Your Question:
My girlfriend is in Nigeria and has a five year old son who e I want to adopt as my own we are planning to marry when and if she is allowed in UK how do we go about getting her to UK

Our Response:
You may be eligible to apply for a marriage visa if you wish to marry in the UK. However, this is only temporary and your girlfriend would have to return to her home country within the terms of the visa. She may then be able to apply for a spouse visa if you both fulfil the requirements, please see link here . It will tell you more about applying for children too.
AboutImmigration - 30-Apr-18 @ 11:18 AM
My girlfriend is in Nigeria and has a five year old son who e I want to adopt as my own we are planning to marry when and if she is allowed in UK how do we go about getting her to UK
Gordon - 29-Apr-18 @ 10:32 AM
I am a U.K. Citizen currently dating a US citizen with hope to marry and start a family within the next 2/3 years. We want to permanently live in the U.K. - what specific documents to we need to complete prior to this and how long does the process take? And what are the average costs involved?
Madison - 27-Apr-18 @ 7:22 PM
Paul - Your Question:
Situation is as follows:I am a UK/Canadian dual citizen residing in the UK.My girlfriend is a Canadian citizen currently working as teacher in China with her daughter.We wish to marry on her next visit to the UK but she still has two years left on her contract in China.She and her daughter would obviously be coming to the UK in all the school holidays to be with me.After her contract, she will move permanently to the UK.What do we need to do to make this happen ?

Our Response:
You can see more via the link here, which should tell you all you need to know.
AboutImmigration - 26-Apr-18 @ 1:40 PM
@Paul - To get married in the UK she will need to apply for a marriage visitor visa before arrival to the UK. When she intends to relocate to the UK, she can apply for a family visa as a spouse under the 5 year route if she meets the requirements or under the 10 year route if shedoesn't meet the requirements. If you formally adopt her daughter then her daughter will become an automatic British citizen on the date of adoption order.
TJ. - 25-Apr-18 @ 7:21 AM
Situation is as follows: I am a UK/Canadian dual citizen residing in the UK. My girlfriend is a Canadian citizen currently working as teacher in China with her daughter. We wish to marry on her next visit to the UK but she still has two years left on her contract in China. She and her daughter would obviously be coming to the UK in all the school holidays to be with me. After her contract, she will move permanently to the UK. What do we need to do to make this happen ?
Paul - 24-Apr-18 @ 8:47 PM
@mandy - it's quite probable that she would have to apply for a visa. But I think Harry will have the minimum income threshold covered. LOL.
Ade - 24-Apr-18 @ 12:34 PM
It's funny isn't it, how Megan Markel (a US citizen)should be allowed to stay in the UK after being married to Prince Harry. One rule for the few another for the many!
mandy - 23-Apr-18 @ 8:48 PM
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