Clearly, the end of a relationship is gutting for all parties, but if you are on a Partner Visa or Spouse Visa you have a number of responsibilities to factor in to what you should be doing next. In this article, we look at the curtailment of a Partner Visa or Spouse Visa, your responsibilities in the curtailment process and we look a practical solutions so that you will not have to leave the UK after your Partner Visa or Spouse Visa has been curtailed due to your relationship coming to an end.
Once your relationship has come to an end it is your responsibility to inform the Home Office that the visa that you gained from your relationship is now no longer valid as the relationship is now over. If you intend to stay in the UK then it is well worth your while to ensure that you keep the Home Office up-to-date with what is going on, if you try to lie or overstay your visa then you may be at risk of committing a criminal offence. A criminal offence that relates to immigration will stay with you and affect any future application you are likely to make to the UK for a visa and will not be looked upon kindly.
At this stage it is important that you write a letter to the Home Office indicating that the relationship has come to an end - you should also make clear your future plans and the plans that involve any dependents; for example any children that you may have and who they are going to stay with. It is important at this stage to make sure that the Home Office is fully aware of the situation so that they can help you if you wish to seek out any alternative visa routes in the future, which in this case is highly likely.
This will depend entirely or your own situation; in all likelihood if you can source a job with a Tier 2 sponsor then a good alternative would be to switch to the Tier 2 General Visa route. The Tier 2 General Visa route is a tried and tested switching route and one of the best ways for those that are about to lose their Partner Visa or Spouse Visa to progress. There are other options as well as the Tier 2 General Visa; for instance if you have a child that is dependent upon you based in the UK either as a British citizen or not, you may be entitled to gain a Parent Visa for that child, also if you have any other relatives in the UK there are other options.
Whilst it may seem the world is coming to an end, there are often alternative options for those who are based in the UK and if you get in touch with our highly-trained immigration specialists then they can take a close look at your individual case and try to work out what your best course of action is on how to proceed going forward.
Every case is slightly different, and whilst your visa is effectively curtailed instantly, it is likely that there will be a small window where it would be deemed acceptable for you to tie up your loose ends in the UK before leaving the country - especially if you've been in the UK for a significant period of time. It is therefore important as we stated earlier, that you keep the Home Office informed at all times, this not only helps you out but it is also a legal requirement.
Keeping in touch with the Home Office will ensure that your case is dealt with in more of a sympathetic manner (certainly more sympathetic than if you simply chose to just overstay your visa) and they would not see you as he prospective overstayer. It is at this stage that you may well wish to consider getting outside help such as assistance from immigration solicitors such as ourselves; our experience means the we have helped many people in similar situations to yours and will be able to provide a practical solution to help you move forward and ideally remain in the UK.
The chances are if you had already been in the UK for long enough then you probably would have already applied for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) should this not be the case, you may indeed be able to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), this is a rather contentious area that means you should ideally be seeking out legal advice before committing yourself to this path.
In this situation it would likely be beneficial to take our services on as soon as you know that your relationship is coming to an end, that way you can give yourself the maximum time to prepare when the worst does actually happen. In these cases it often pays to have as much forward notice as possible, clearly we understand this isn't always possible, but it is certainly preferable.
There are several places in which you could look for more help on the breakdown of your relationship, but from an immigration perspective you would be well advised to get in touch with our immigration solicitors. Our specialists understand the laws around immigration inside-out and will be able to help with your specific situation. So if you looking for advice or help then please get in touch today and our immigration specialists will be happy to help with your case.