UK Visas in Ghana
UK Visas in Ghana
UK Visas in Ghana
UK Visas in Ghana
UK Spouse and Dependent Visa in Ghana
UK Spouse and Dependent Visa in Ghana

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If an applicant is the husband, wife or civil partner of a person who has settled status in the UK, they can apply to join them in the UK under this visa category. If a person wishes to join their husband, wife or civil partner who is settled in the UK, they must ensure that:

  • they are at least 18 years of age;
  • they currently reside and have settled status in the UK;
  • they are coming to live permanently in the UK with their partner;
  • the couple have met in person before the application;
  • the couple is legally married to the spouse or is in a civil partnership recognised in UK;
  • they intend to live together permanently;
  • the marriage is genuine and subsisting;
  • all previous marriages have permanently broken down;
  • they are able to financially support themselves and any dependents adequately without recourse to public funds;
  • they satisfy the minimum income requirement;
  • there will be adequate accommodation for them and their dependents without recourse to public funds in accommodation which they own or occupy exclusively; and
  • they satisfy the English language requirement.
Proving the marriage

The primary requirement for an applicant to qualify for admission is proof that the applicant is married to or is the civil partner of a person settled in the UK. The applicant bears the burden to show that a marriage or civil partners has taken place. In many cases providing the marriage may not be difficult. The production of a civil or religious marriage certificate will be sufficient evidence.

If there is no such evidence or the immigration authorities doubt the authenticity of the document, it may be necessary to submit statuary declarations from the persons who performed the ceremony, and/or from friends and relatives who attended the wedding and any photographs or invitations of the ceremony.

Validity of marriage

To qualify for admission as spouse, the applicant must show that the marriage is recognised as valid under English law. A legal marriage is one that is registered with the official registrar of the place where the marriage ceremony took place. The official registrar/local authority usually issues a marriage certificate as proof of the marriage.

A polygamous marriage may be recognized in English law, but only one spouse in the polygamous marriage is permitted to enter the UK.

Adequate accommodation

Adequate accommodation for the couple under the Immigration Rules must be:

  • accommodation that they own or occupy exclusively; and
  • accommodation that will not contravene the statutory rules on overcrowding as a result of the spouse’s or civil partner’s entry.

The rules require the accommodation to be exclusively available to the couple. In this sense the exclusive occupation of a room in a shared house is adequate. It is not therefore necessary for the accommodation to be exclusively occupied by the parties. Thus, it is acceptable for a husband to join his wife in her parent’s household provided they have a room exclusive to their use. Evidence in proof of adequate accommodation may be:

  • a tenancy agreement;
  • land registry certificate/mortgage paperwork;
  • a letter from the local authority confirming the number of rooms and the facilities available in the accommodation to confirm that there will be no statutory overcrowding.
Maintenance requirement

Adequate maintenance is maintenance without recourse to public funds, accepted as being a prohibition on additional public funds. This means that:

  • the sponsoring spouse or civil partner being reliant on public funds is not necessarily fatal to the application;
  • the sponsor must have a minimum incur of £18,600;
  • if sponsoring both a spouse and a child an income of £22,400; and
  • for each additional child £2,400.
English language requirement

An applicant satisfies the language requirement if any of the following additions apply:

  • if they are a national of a majority English speaking country;
  • proof that the applicant has passed an English language test approved by the UKBA; or
  • proof that the applicant holds an acceptable degree language in English.

If an applicant is a national of a majority speaking country the production of a passport or an acceptable travel document is proof of nationality. For the English language test the applicant must provide a certificate of the award which must clearly show:

  • the name of the applicant;
  • the qualification obtained; and
  • the date of the award.

Where the applicant relies on an acceptable degree taught in English in satisfaction of the maintenance requirement they must provide an original certificate of the award which must clearly show:

  • the name of the awarding institution.
  • the applicants name;
  • the title of the award;
  • the date of the award; and
  • the name of the awarding institution.
Intention to live together permanently

This requirement is defined in the Immigration Rules as an intention to live together evidenced by a clear commitment from both parties that they will live together permanently in the UK immediately following the outcome of the applicant in question or as soon as circumstances permit thereafter. The intention must thus exist at the date of the decision on the application. Therefore, if a couple intended to live together at the date of the marriage, but the relationship broke down by the time the visa application was decided, the requirement will not be satisfied. It is very difficult to prove a person’s intention so an actual period of cohabitation is the best way to prove that a couple intends to live together. This of course may be difficult when the parties live in different countries.

Where a couple have only spent a short period of time together because one partner is overseas evidence of contact becomes increasingly crucial. Generally, this requirement may be satisfied by proof of correspondence (letters, emails, phone conversations, etc) photos, and evidence of period of time spent together. There could also be a letter or statement from both parties formally declaring that they are married partners and intend to live together at a given address which is owned or occupied by the sponsor in the UK.

Relationship is genuine and subsisting

This requirement is almost synonymous with the preceding requirement. Generally the production of the following evidence will show that the relationship is genuine and subsisting:

  • that the couple are in current long-term relationship;
  • the applicant is living together with their partner;
  • that the applicant shares responsibilities with their partner for any children;
  • that they share financial responsibility with their partners such as a joint mortgage, tenancy agreement, a joint bank account or joint savings, utility bills in both names, etc;
  • that the applicant and their partner have visited one another’s home country and family; and
  • have made plans about living together permanently in the UK with their partner.

Leave may be granted for 33 months, with a further leave to remain for 30 months. This is the 5-year probationary period. On completion of this probationary period, the sponsor or partner can apply for settlement in the UK and must show that:

  • they have completed the probationary period;
  • the marriage or civil partnership is subsisting;
  • the parties intends to live permanently together;
  • the maintenance and accommodation requirement are still met; and
  • they have sufficient knowledge of English and of like at the UK.

Unmarried partner

Unmarried partners can enter the UK to join a partner who is present and settled in the UK with the same requirement to be met as those for a spouse or civil partner will some additional specific requirements which are that:

  • the parties have been living together in a relationship akin to marriage or civil partnership for the year or more;
  • any previous marriage or similar relationship by either partner has permanently broken down; and
  • the couple do not have a consanguineous relationship.

Children

Provided that a child is under 18 years of age and both parents are settled in the UK, the rules are relatively straightforward. Children cannot normally come to settle in the UK unless both parents are settled or have been given permission to settle in the UK except where:

  • one parent is dead and the other is settled or coming to settle in the UK; or
  • the parent who is settled or coming to settle in the UK has had sole responsibility for the child’s upbringing or the child normally lives with that parent and not the other parent; or
  • one parent is settled or coming to settle and there are serious reasons why the child must be allowed to enter the UK.

Sole responsibility test

In addition to the single parent requirement the UK settled parent must also establish the following:

  • that they have had sole responsibility for the major decision in the child’s life;
  • that they provide other support as well as simply financial support;
  • the extent of the involvement of others in the child’s upbringing; and
  • the extent of the parent’s contact and continuing interest in the child’s life.

To be eligible, the applicant must show that:

  • they are under the age of 18 years;
  • they are not living an independent;
  • they are not married or in a civil partnership; and
  • they have not formed an independently family aunt.

Both parents

  • The parents are present and settled or are entering the UK for settlement; and
  • adequate maintenance and accommodation will be provided without recourse to public funds.
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