Fundamental Freedom in the European Country:
EU Convention on Human Rights provides right to one’s private and family life, his home and correspondence, subject to certain restrictions that are in “accordance with the law” and necessary in the democratic society.
With law comes the duty and obligation to abide by the rules and regulations of the law, which can come as a surprise package for many couples and unfortunately may bring discomfort for others.
Generally, Spouse visas allow an overseas partner living abroad to join their British or civil partner in the UK. Yet, the fact that the sponsoring spouse of civil partner might be a British Citizen does not necessarily mean that the immigration process will be a straightforward one. There are a number of strict requirements that could lead to a delay or a refusal of a spouse visa application if those requirements are not met.
And one such criterion is the financial requirement. With the introduction of the new financial requirement on 9 July 2012, the process of obtaining the UK spouse visa under the settlement category has become increasingly complex. Many UK sponsors are unable to satisfy the strict criteria set out by the UK Border Agency.
The minimum income threshold required to sponsor a foreign spouse is £18,600 per annum.
A self-employed sponsor can show evidence of meeting the threshold requirement by means of their business accounts and HMRC tax returns for the last financial year.
Pensions can be used as a means of meeting the financial requirement as long as they have been used as a source of income for at least 28 days prior to the application. Pensions can be combined with other categories, including savings, to meet the financial requirement.
Third party financial support:
While there is no option for third party support to count towards the financial requirement, if the couple have received a cash gift (not a loan) from a family member or friend which has been under their direct control for the last six months immediately preceding the date of filing the application, the funds can be used as an evidence.
Another alternative for sponsors with insufficient income would be to use both current income from employment (or other sources) and cash savings. Should a person apply for social security benefits in the UK, they would only be able to do so if they had savings under £16,000. Therefore, the UK Border Agency (UKBA) use the figure of £16,000 as the minimum ‘floor’ amount for savings which can be used to supplement any shortage in a sponsor’s income, or as main cash savings. Thus, the applicant and their sponsor must have at least £16,000 in savings plus 2.5 times the shortfall of £18,600 in order to satisfy the financial criteria.
Apart from that there are certain non- employment income which can be used as an evidence for meeting the financial requirement:-
- Rental income
- Dividends or other income from investments
- Trust funds, bonds, stocks and shares
- Interest payments from personal savings
- Maintenance payments from a former partner
- UK maternity allowance
- Bereavement allowance
- Bereavement payment
- A maintenance grant or stipend
The sponsor will not need to meet the minimum income threshold if they are in receipt of the following benefits at the time of application:
- Carer’s Allowance
- Disability Living Allowance
- Severe Disablement Allowance
- Industrial Injuries Disablement Benefit
- Attendance Allowance or Personal Independence Payment
The sponsor must show that a foreign partner or spouse will be adequately maintained without recourse to public funds, and that they will not need to seek extra benefits at a higher rate due to the arrival of their spouse into the household.
Our UK Immigration experts have expertise to deal with UK Immigration matters and UK Spouse Visas. So if you have any queries regarding UK Immigration you can contact our experts UK Spouse Visa Consultant on +91 9819127002 or email us at