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21 November, 23
Great Interaction
Great interaction. I had a simple question which would have cost a fortune going to see a local solicitor. It was all very professional but still friendly. The solicitor I spoke to was the chief executive of her law firm (I looked her up on LinkedIn). You are dealing with very good lawyers who earn additional money through Lawhive. I would definitely use this service again. Highly recommend.
Mark,
29 December, 23
The solicitor who was appointed to me was outstanding
Very simple to engage with instant confirmation in writing straight after. Daniel, the solicitor who was appointed to me, was outstanding in his approach, his understanding of the technicalities of the law and, crucially, a genuine care for the client. Would definitely advise using Lawhive, you won't regret it.
Tahir Idris,
04 October, 23
We were so pleased to find the Lawhive website
After struggling to find a solicitor willing to give us advice, and for a reasonable cost, we were so pleased to find the Lawhive website. At first we wondered how well it would work, but needn't have worried at all - the whole process was simple, straightforward and professional and great value for money. We felt extremely lucky to be matched with our solicitor, Sonay Erten, as she was exactly what we were looking for - knowledgeable, patient and kind - a refreshing change from solicitors we have used in the past. She showed a great deal of empathy for our situation and explained things in language that was easy to understand (rather than the usual "solicitor" talk, which can be intimidating). She's a shining example of what a solicitor should aspire to be and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend her to others or use her again in the future. We came out of our session reassured and confident of what we needed to do going forward, so a big "thank you!"
Julie Taylor,
01 June, 23
Fast and professional
I got the outcome I wanted regarding cease and desist to a competitor spreading defamatory statements about my business. Fast and professional, and at a much lower price than high street firms. Highly recommended thanks.
Jason Hunter,
23 July, 23
Very efficient! Can highly recommend.
I found the website very easy to use. Quick responses and I was even able to talk to someone who was friendly and competent. She rang me rather than emailed me. A solicitor was quickly found who could help me and once the relevant identification was approved he started work. Within two days the solicitor had checked documents and commented on them. Very efficient! Can highly recommend.
Pauline Piper,
15 February, 23
The service was fast and ultra professional
Sonay was really informative and understood my questions instantly, what I thought was complex Sonay simplified massively. She regularly checked in and the service was fast and ultra professional. Would highly recommend.
Jamie Crichton,
09 November, 23
Great service and very reasonably priced,
Great service and very reasonably priced, Kem was really helpful and professional. Would use again
Sarah Shanks,
21 November, 23
Rated 4.8 / 5. Showing our 4 & 5 star reviews.

About

A Family Visa is a visa that allows a non-citizen to enter the UK to join a family member who is a British citizen or permanent resident. The visa allows the non-citizen to stay in the UK for a limited period of time.Next steps

How much does a Family Visa cost?

The cost for a licensed solicitor to help with a Family Visa is dependent on many factors including the complexity and specific requirements of the case. On average it is expected to range from £675-£900 but in some cases it could cost as much as £1,094.

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Family Visa

Our experienced network of immigration solicitors has helped many families achieve their dream of living together in the UK.

We understand that family visa application processes can be complex and you may be uncertain whether your application will be accepted and what to do if it isn’t.

Get in touch today for a free case evaluation and quote for the help of our family visa lawyers who can help you maximise your chances of success when making your application.

What is a family visa? 

A family visa allows you to live in the UK for more than 6 months with your:

  • Spouse or partner

  • Fiancé, fiancée, or proposed civil partner

  • Child

  • Parent

  • Relative who'll provide long-term care for you.

UK family visa types

There are many different types of UK family visas, including:

  • Spouse visa

  • Civil partner visa

  • Unmarried partner visa

  • Fiancé visa

  • Proposed civil partner visa

  • Child of a partner or parent visa

  • Other child visa

  • Parent of a child

  • Adult dependent

  • Bereaved partner visa

  • A family member of PBS migrant visa.

Who can apply for a family visa?

If you're a UK citizen or have permanent residence in the UK, your family members who are not from the EU or EFTA countries can apply for a UK Family Visa (also called a 'family of a settled person' visa).

This visa allows them to live with you in the UK for at least six months. They can also work and study during their stay under a Family Visa.

Who can’t get a family visa?

If you have another type of visa your family usually cannot apply under a family visa to join you. However, if you have another type of visa already your family may be able to join you as dependents. 

There are different rules for skilled worker visas and student visas.

If your family member is in the UK on a student visa or work visa you can't apply for a family visa, however, you may be able to stay with them as a dependent.

If a parent owes more than £500 to the NHS, they cannot apply for a parent visa. 

How long is a UK family visa? 

When a family visa is granted, you can live in the UK with your family for more than 6 months. A family visa can be extended, we’ll cover the details of family visa extensions later.

Can you switch from a different visa to a family visa?

You can switch to a family visa if you're already in the UK and want to join your family member who is a British citizen or settled in the UK.

You can do this any time before your current permission to stay in the UK expires.

Can you apply for a family visa while you’re in the UK?

You can apply for a family visa while staying in the UK under certain circumstances.

You cannot apply for a family visa if:

  • You’re in the UK on a work visa

  • You’re on a temporary student visa

  • You’re living in the UK with a UK visitor visa with 6 months or less remaining

You’ll need to leave the UK to apply for a family visa if you’re in the country as a visitor, or you have 6 months or less on your visa.

How can I get a family visa?

To get a family visa you will need to follow these steps: 

  1. Fulfill the eligibility criteria

  2. You’ll then need to fill in a family visa application form or visit a visa application centre

  3. Get your supporting documentation together

  4. Attend a visa interview.

How do you extend a family visa?

You can apply to extend a family visa if you’re already in the UK on a valid family visa.

You can apply at any time before your current permission to stay expires. 

You may also apply for settlement if you’re eligible. This is known as indefinite leave to remain.

If you have stayed in the UK for a long time, you may have leave to remain based on the ties you have created to the country through your private life.

If you’re extending your visa to stay with the same family member your visa can be extended by 28 days.

What is the income requirement for a family visa in the UK?

You must be able to show that you meet a certain income threshold or have an appropriate amount of savings. This is known as the financial requirement.

The most common way to prove you meet the income requirement is to show that you receive a certain amount each year.

If your partner is in the UK and you’re joining them, you can combine your income. If they aren’t in the UK, you can only include the income they will get after they move.

If your partner is applying for themselves and no children, the income requirement is at least £18,600 before tax. 

If children are included on the application, you can sponsor them if your income is over £18,600:

  • You’ll need to pay £3,800 for the first child;

  • £2,400 for the second child

So, if your partner applies for themselves and 2 children, you can sponsor them if you earn at least £24,000 per year.

If your income doesn’t meet these limits, you may be able to meet the income requirement if: 

  • You and your partner have £16,000 in savings together 

  • You have Personal Independence Payment (PIP) or Carer’s Allowance benefits.

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How to apply for a family visa as a partner

To apply for a family visa as a partner, you and your partner must be 18 or older.

Your partner must also meet one of these conditions:

  • Be a British or Irish citizen

  • Have settled status in the UK

  • Be from the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, or Liechtenstein with pre-settled status, having lived in the UK before January 1st 2021

  • Hold a Turkish Businessperson or Worker visa

  • Have protection status

  • Have permission to stay as a stateless person.

You and your partner must plan to live together permanently in the UK.

You must demonstrate one of the following:

  • Being in a recognised civil partnership or marriage

  • Living together in a relationship for at least two years

  • Being engaged or planning to marry within six months

  • Having a relationship for at least two years but unable to live together, with valid reasons.

Additionally, you must prove your proficiency in English and have the financial ability to support yourselves.

If you don't meet these criteria, you might still be able to apply successfully if you have a British or Irish citizen child in the UK or a child who has lived in the UK for seven years, or it would violate your human rights to deny entry or force your departure.

How to apply for a family visa as a fiancé or fiancée

To apply for a family visa as a fiancé or fiancée you must prove that any previous marriages or civil partnerships have legally ended.

You should also prove that you intend to marry or form a civil partnership with your fiancé or fiancée within six months of arrival.

How much does a UK family visa cost?

The cost of joining a relative in the UK on a family visa depends on who you’re joining and where from:

Apply from outside the UK

Apply in the UK

Joining a partner, parent, or child

£1,846

£1,048

Cost for dependent added to your application 

£1,846 per person

£1,048 per person

If you need to be looked after by a relative that has temporary ‘protection status’ – permission to stay as a refugee or with humanitarian protection – it costs:

  • £404 if you’re applying from outside the UK

  • £1,048 if you’re applying from inside the UK

You might also need to pay the healthcare surcharge as part of your application.

The cost for a licensed solicitor to help with a family visa depends on many factors including the complexity and specific requirements of the case. On average it is expected to range from £675-£900 but in some cases, it could cost as much as £1,094.

If you need a family visa lawyer to help with your application, get in touch today for a free quote.

How long does it take to get a family visa?

How long it takes to process a family visa depends on the visa type you apply for. For example, a partner visa can take up to 12 months to process, while a parent visa can take up to 24 months.

A priority service allows applicants to receive a decision on their family visa application within 30 days and costs £573.

Those applying from the UK may be able to pay an extra £1,000 for the super-priority service to get a faster decision.

You cannot use the super priority service if you’re applying as an adult coming to be cared for by a relative.

UK family visitor visas, short-term visas that allow your family to visit you in the UK are processed within 3 weeks. A faster decision can be requested for £500 and your decision will be processed within 5 working days. There is also a super priority service which costs £1,000 and a decision will be made within one day.

What are the alternatives to a family visa?

If you can't get a family visa, there are other ways to stay in the UK with your family.

Domestic abuse or bereavement

If you faced domestic abuse or your partner died while you had permission to stay in the UK, you might be able to apply for settlement.

Family member with protection status

If your partner or parent is a refugee or has humanitarian protection in the UK, you could apply for Family Reunion for Protected Persons.

Why might a family visa be rejected?

There are a few reasons why a family visa might be rejected:

  • The validity of your relationship may be questioned

  • You don't meet the financial requirements

  • The UK sponsor doesn’t have adequate accommodation 

  • You haven’t provided all of the requested documents and information

  • You’re not eligible for a family visa

  • You have unspent criminal convictions.

Can I appeal a family visa refusal?

You can either make a new application or appeal against the decision you received when you have been declined a family visa. You may also lodge an administrative or judicial review, or apply for a different visa. 

Different types of family visas have different appeals processes.

You should ensure that you carefully read your rejection letter. This will guide you on what to do next and how long you have to appeal.

If you are appealing or seeking a review, you should address the reasons for rejection to maximise your chance of success the second time around. It is important to submit the relevant documents in the correct place.

If you think a clear error has been made you could request a review by UKVI.

An expert family visa immigration solicitor can assess the best route for appealing your decision.  

How can Lawhive help?

Our network of expert immigration solicitors can help you bring your family together through expert family visa advice and guidance. We’ll make everything as simple as possible so you can plan for a bright future in the UK with your family.

If you would like to discuss your application for a family visa, whether you have been rejected and are considering an appeal, or you’re not sure which family visa is suitable for you contact us today to speak with our legal assessment team and get a free quote for the help of our lawyers with your matter.

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