UK Fiancé Visa (2019)
This is part 2 of 3 of the trilogy of articles, which are devoted to the fiancé visa immigration route.
In the previous article, I explained that there are 3 elements to a successful UK Fiancé visa application.
To succeed in their entry clearance application (visa application made from outside the UK) fiancés need to:
- Meet the Suitability Requirements
- Meet the Eligibility Requirements
- Follow the correct procedure.
At the risk of oversimplifying the law, this suitability requirements are about checking the criminality, dishonesty and debts to the Home Office (litigation costs) and NHS.
In THIS ARTICLE I’ve analysed every element of the suitability requirements.
The Eligibility Requirements
The Eligibility Requirements consist of four main requirements: relationship, financial, accommodation and English language requirements.
In this ARTICLE No1, I’ve explained all 9 key components of the relationship requirement:
Today I shall concentrate on the financial requirement.
The Financial Requirement
These were 9 elements of the relationship requirement. In the next article, I’ll explain all the elements of the financial requirement. I’ll finalise this trilogy of articles by explaining the accommodation and English language requirement. I’ll also be explaining why you should avoid taking the fiancé route.
The parties can meet the financial requirement by the way of showing the necessary 1. Income; 2. Savings or 3. By proving that they are meeting the requirement.
In July 2012 the Home Office introduced the Minimum Income Requirement (MIR). From that date, all couples (unless exempt) needed to show that the Sponsor earns at least £18,600 gross after tax. That is provided, there is only one applicant. If the applicant has children, who are not British and not from one of the EEA countries, they’ll need to show an additional income. The amount will be £3,800 for the first child. If there are more children in the family, it will be an additional amount of £2,400 for each additional child.
For example, if there is one fiancé applying with 3 visa national children, the Sponsor will need to show an income of at least £27,200 (before tax). Here is how I calculated it:
£18,600 (fiancé)+ £3,800 (child No1) + £2,400 (child No2) + £2,400 (child No3) = £27,200
What do you do if in your situation the Sponsor does not work but you (or the Sponsor) have substantial savings? In this case, you prove that you meet the MIR by showing that you have savings.
A lot of people get really confused about the formula for calculations. There is no need. I promise you you’ll get it if you bear with me for the next several paragraphs.
The first thing you need to understand is that the Home Office will only take the amount of your savings into consideration if it is above £16,000. So, you just need to remember that £16,000 is a constant figure in our formula and WILL NEVER CHANGE.
Then you need to understand that the formula is tied to Minimum Income Requirement considerations. In other words, the decision-maker needs to make sure that you do actually meet it. So the next step will be to establish what is the gap (the shortfall) between the Sponsor’s actual earnings and the MIR.
Let me give you an example. Suppose, the Sponsor invites a fiancé with 3 visa national kids and he earns £20,000 gross a year. What is the gap between his actual earnings and the Minimum Income Requirement?
In the previous example we established that the MIR for the Sponsor with a fiancé and 3 children is £27,200 so we need to deduct his actual earnings form the MIR:
£27,200 – £20,000 = £7,200
The shortfall (the gap) in this example is £7,200.
And the last thing you need to understand that the Home Office wants to make sure that these savings will last you for a certain period of time. What is this period of time? It is for 2.5 years.
Let us put all the formula together:
£16,000 (constant, never changing figure) + (shortfall x 2.5 years (constant, never changing figure)) = the amount of savings you need to have to meet the financial requirement.
Here is how it works in practice for our Sponsor with the fiancé and 3 kids:
£16,000 + (£7,200 x 2.5) = £34,000
The sponsor in our example will need to have at least £34,000 in his bank account for at least 6 months in order to be able to rely on these savings in order to make an application.
The couple can meet the requirement by showing they are completely exempt. The Home Office will allow it if the Sponsor gets one of these benefits:
(i) disability living allowance;
(ii) severe disablement allowance;
(iii) industrial injury disablement benefit;
(iv) attendance allowance;
(v) carer’s allowance;
(vi) personal independence payment;
(vii) Armed Forces Independence Payment or Guaranteed Income Payment under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme;
(viii) Constant Attendance Allowance, Mobility Supplement or War Disablement Pension under the War Pensions Scheme; or
(ix) Police Injury Pension
In these circumstances, the parties do not need to prove that they meet the MIR. However what they will need to
prove is the fact that they will maintain and accommodate themselves, without applying for additional benefits.
This is how you meet the financial requirement.
In the final article No3, I’ll explain how to meet the accommodation and English language requirement. I’ll also explain to you, guys, why you’ll be better off applying for the spouse visa as opposed to the fiancé one.