A UK spouse visa refusal notice can be issued by an Entry Clearance Officer for a variety of reasons causing significant anxiety and concern. Here we look at the two main reasons for a refusal decision and how to avoid such an outcome.
In our experience, the two most common reasons contained in spouse visa refusal notices at the moment are that:
- the financial requirements under Appendix FM of the Immigration Rules (HC 395, as amended) have not be met; or
- the Entry Clearance Officer does not accept that the couple are in a genuine relationship.
An overview of the financial requirement
An applicant applying for a UK spouse visa overseas must demonstrate, in order to avoid a spouse visa refusal due to the financial requirement, that the applicant’s spouse (who will be a British citizen or hold Indefinite Leave to Remain) earns at least £18,600 per year or that the couple have savings.
If the applicant’s spouse is retired or otherwise not earning an income, the level of savings needs to be at least £62,500. If the applicant’s spouse is earning an income less than £18,600, the applicant can qualify using a combination of savings and income.
The genuine relationship requirement
Proving that the relationship between the couple is genuine often requires creative thinking, especially if the couple have not been married for long or have been living apart for a lengthy period of time.
Keeping records of holidays together, contact with each other, the celebration of events such as birthdays and supporting letters from friends and family members is important for all spouse visa applications but especially so in these cases.
Avoiding a spouse visa refusal decision – how we can assist
We have a 100% success record for spouse visa applications. Our specialists will explain the evidence needed and will review and recommend any areas that may need to be strengthened. We are often approached by couples who have received a spouse visa refusal notice and in such cases we will review the evidence provided and the legal grounds cited by the Entry Clearance Officer and advise on the best course of action. We have assisted numerous couples with a subsequent successful application following a spouse visa refusal decision.
If you require legal advice about a spouse visa application, or have received a spouse visa refusal notice, our immigration specialists are available for an initial discussion and can be contacted here.
You can find out more information about applying for a spouse visa here.