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Will my immigration status change if I want to get married?

Our specialists often receive requests for advice from Tier 2 visa holders relating to their right to marry and what effect the marriage could have on their current and even future visa. Getting married can make quite a significant change in your personal circumstances and this may well have an effect on your immigration status going forward. In this article, we look at your options and try to answer some of the questions you may have.

Changing to a spouse visa

One of the main options available to you is by changing to a spouse visa. You can apply from within the UK for this visa and it will alter some of the terms of the visa that you are currently on. You have two choices. You can stay on your current visa and wait until you can apply for indefinite leave to remain or try and move onto a spousal visa.

Advantages

A big advantage of switching to a spouse visa is no longer having to be sponsored. You will be free to work for whoever you choose. This is a big plus for some who are looking to move on in their career but are limited to only working for companies that can sponsor them.

There is also a reduction in the requirement of what you need to earn. This is also ideal if one of you wishes to work part-time instead of full time. It may also take the pressure away from your personal situation, meaning you can be open to other opportunities that come your way.

Disadvantages

If you switch to a spouse visa, then your qualifying period for indefinite leave to remain will be impacted. This is certainly a major consideration and even a possible impediment if you are reasonably close to attaining indefinite leave to remain.

Additionally, as a holder of a spouse visa, you would not be entitled to free healthcare and would need to pay the health care surcharge as part of your application for a spouse visa.

Do I have to change to a spouse visa?

No, there is no requirement to change to a spouse visa and it will depend on your personal circumstances as to whether it is the right one for you and your spouse.

As you see above, there are benefits and drawbacks to changing your visa route and it is worth speaking to us first to talk through your situation with our experts to see what is best for you.

How we can help

Our immigration specialists can guide you through the process of switching from a Tier 2 general visa to a spousal visa. We can also offer you advice on the benefits and drawbacks of doing so.

Speak to us today to discuss your immigration queries and let us help clarify your situation for you.

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