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ChippyC

Extending spouse VISA in UK - HELP!

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ChippyC    0
Posted (edited)

Hi Everyone 

 

It's great to know there's forums like this out there with people who have 'been there and done that'!... I'm hoping you guys may be able to point me in the right direction as to what the next steps in extending my wife's VISA are?

 

My wife and I got married here in the UK January 2015 whilst she was on the end of a student visa. We then used an agency here in the UK to apply for a spouse visa which was quite costly! the application was submitted in Bangkok a couple of weeks later (during our honeymoon) and we were told it would take up to 3 months for us to get a response, 2 weeks later and we had the thumbs up from the embassy which was great!. After a 3 month honeymoon/jolly in Thailand we headed home to the UK. 

 

My wife's Visa expires mid November 2017 so we need to start looking in to extending it. I've enquired to the previous solicitor/agency about the fees for taking care of this this time round and it's higher than anticipated!

 

OPTION 1:

 

AGENCY FEE: £1600

GOVERNMENT FEE: £993

GOVERNMENT HEALTH SURCHARGE: £500

 

OPTION 2:  (in person service)

 

* the above + *

GOVERNMENT IN PERSON (EXPRESS SERVICE): £500

AGENCY ATTENDANCE FEE (TO BE THERE FOR THE EXPRESS SERVICE): £500

 

I think there may also be an English test on top of the above.

 

Anyhow, as a result of the above I'm considering whether we should maybe take care of the application/evidence etc ourselves this time round but would like the opinion of others on here as to whether its difficult to do?. I've come across what I believe to be the correct application online: FLR (M). On top of this application though I imagine we will need to provide a long list of documents and evidence the same as first time round but was wondering exactly what we need to provide and is there a dedicated web page somewhere listing all of this? or a contact number where I can obtain advice on this?

 

I'd be very grateful if any of you guys could help me out here!

 

Many thanks in advance!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by ChippyC

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rasg    192

I trust that you've been collecting addressed documents from official sources since you came back to the UK? They are meant to be spaced out over the period of the Settlement visa to prove you have been living together.

 

I did all of my wife's visas without a problem since January 2015 without problems. Two visit visas, one settlement visa and one FLR. It's not that difficult and you have most of it from the settlement visa.

 

I have just sent you a PM.

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7by7    6,295

 

16 hours ago, ChippyC said:

Anyhow, as a result of the above I'm considering whether we should maybe take care of the application/evidence etc ourselves this time round but would like the opinion of others on here as to whether its difficult to do?. I've come across what I believe to be the correct application online: FLR (M). On top of this application though I imagine we will need to provide a long list of documents and evidence the same as first time round but was wondering exactly what we need to provide and is there a dedicated web page somewhere listing all of this? or a contact number where I can obtain advice on this?

FLR, and later ILR, are both relatively simple, and I see no need to use an agent.

 

Yes, Form FLR(M) is the correct one; but it is regularly updated so make sure you have the latest one; currently 4/2017.
 

The documents you need are listed Section 13 of the form, and includes, as rasg says, evidence of cohabitation.

 

You will also need, of course, current evidence that the financial requirement is still met. You do not have to use the same method as last time, and for both FLR and ILR your wife's earned income, if any, can be used; either instead of or in combination with yours.

 

16 hours ago, ChippyC said:

I think there may also be an English test on top of the above.

Yes, the requirement for FLR is A2 in speaking and listening. If she already has this and used it for her initial visa she can use it again for FLR, even if her certificate has expired or her test provider is no longer on the approved list. But if she had A1 for her initial visa, then she will need to obtain A2 from an approved provider. Note that for ILR she will need B1, so maybe go for that this time so she can use it again when the time comes to apply for ILR.

 

For more, see the relevant to you parts of Family visas: apply, extend or switch

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ChippyC    0

Many many thanks for your replies both!

 

We have numerous documents with both our names on, from council tax and utility bills through to hotel bookings and car insurance documents. We're definitely covered on that front!

 

I've just checked her English cert' which we had from her first spouse visa. It's a:

 

Grade 5 

Graded examination in spoken English 

Entry level certificate in ESOL international (speaking and listening) (Entry 3)

B1.1 of the CEFR

with distinction.

 

English Exam Centres (SELT Centre) - December 2014

Certificate issued 22 December 2014

 

If I remember right the agency said we didn't need a cert' as high as the above for the first spouse visa but recommended we take the next level up as her English is good and this would mean we could use this cert on the next visa (this one) so what you're saying sounds right 7by7!.

 

One more question... (although I'm sure there will be more once I get the application started haha)

 

I'm told the visa must be applied for 28 days before it expires which would be mid October. How long is the turn around roughly on this Visa? Normally the wait wouldn't matter but the issue we have is that we have booked/paid for flights back to Thailand on December 27th for 3.5 weeks, we've also booked a short trip/flights away to Cambodia with her parents for a few days aswell as hotels etc. If her visa/passport isn't back in time all this would be wasted money :(

Is it likely that it will be back in time for this or should we pay the additional £500 for the same day visa service?

When we booked our trip back to Thailand a few months back we completely forgot about the Visa/passport renewal, very stupid I know!

 

Many helps for everything guys!

 

 

 

 

 

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rasg    192
3 minutes ago, ChippyC said:

I'm told the visa must be applied for 28 days before it expires which would be mid October. How long is the turn around roughly on this Visa? Normally the wait wouldn't matter but the issue we have is that we have booked/paid for flights back to Thailand on December 27th for 3.5 weeks, we've also booked a short trip/flights away to Cambodia with her parents for a few days aswell as hotels etc. If her visa/passport isn't back in time all this would be wasted money :(

Is it likely that it will be back in time for this or should we pay the additional £500 for the same day visa service?

When we booked our trip back to Thailand a few months back we completely forgot about the Visa/passport renewal, very stupid I know!

My wife's took seven weeks and that seems to be average.

 

I would do all I can not to pay for the premium service. It's a rip off imho.

 

Have you read the guidelines?

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ChippyC    0

Yes I've been through the guidelines.

 

If we apply October 16 which is 27 days before my wife's Visa expires and the application takes 8 weeks it should be back to us mid December in time for our flights on December 27th. But what if it doesn't? If it doesn't return in time is it possible to apply for the same day service mid December despite already having submitted a regular application?

 

Thanks

 

 

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rasg    192

I don't think you can but I am not 100% on that. It's not something I even considered at the time as we had no burning need to go anywhere outside the UK.

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7by7    6,295
21 hours ago, ChippyC said:

I've just checked her English cert' which we had from her first spouse visa. It's a:

 

Grade 5 

Graded examination in spoken English 

Entry level certificate in ESOL international (speaking and listening) (Entry 3)

B1.1 of the CEFR

with distinction.

 

English Exam Centres (SELT Centre) - December 2014

Certificate issued 22 December 2014

 

If I remember right the agency said we didn't need a cert' as high as the above for the first spouse visa but recommended we take the next level up as her English is good and this would mean we could use this cert on the next visa (this one) so what you're saying sounds right 7by7!.

The agency were correct.

 

As I said, provided a pass is of the correct grade or higher and has been used in a previous successful application then it can be used again in future ones, even if the certificate has expired.

 

The requirement for FLR is A2, so she can use the above pass for this FLR application. The requirement for ILR is B1, so she can use it for that well. Note, though, that she will also need to pass the Life in the UK test for ILR.

 

Should she wish to apply for naturalisation as British, then she can use her B1 and LitUK pass for that as well.

 

21 hours ago, ChippyC said:

One more question... (although I'm sure there will be more once I get the application started haha)

 

I'm told the visa must be applied for 28 days before it expires which would be mid October. How long is the turn around roughly on this Visa? Normally the wait wouldn't matter but the issue we have is that we have booked/paid for flights back to Thailand on December 27th..........

 

You say her visa expires in mid November. Although the visa is valid for 33 months, the residential requirement for FLR is 30 months so she does not necessarily have to wait until her visa expires, but can apply for FLR after she has lived in the UK for 30 months.

 

So, when did she first arrive to take up residence with her spouse visa?

 

21 hours ago, ChippyC said:

If we apply October 16 which is 27 days before my wife's Visa expires and the application takes 8 weeks it should be back to us mid December in time for our flights on December 27th. But what if it doesn't? If it doesn't return in time is it possible to apply for the same day service mid December despite already having submitted a regular application?

 

If she withdraws her postal application then she will not get a refund of the fee paid!

 

So even if it were possible to then make a personal application, and as she would no longer have a valid leave I'm not sure it would be, then she would be paying twice!

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ChippyC    0

When my wife had her spouse visa granted/stickered in her passport it was dated:

 

VALID FROM: 12/02/15

VALID UNTIL: 12/11/17

 

The date it was stamped by immigration re entering the UK is:

 

2 MAY 2015

 

So am I wrong in thinking that I need to be applying 28 days before the 12/11/17? Should it be 28 days before November 2nd which is 30 months after 2nd of May? (the date she entered the UK on her spouse visa) which would be October 5th?

 

Thanks 7by7

 

 

 

 

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rasg    192

It is up to 28 days before. I couriered my wife's two or three days before her Settlement visa ran out to make sure that at the end of FLR 2 she wlll have completed five years in the UK.

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7by7    6,295
On ‎14‎/‎08‎/‎2017 at 9:11 PM, ChippyC said:

When my wife had her spouse visa granted/stickered in her passport it was dated:

 

VALID FROM: 12/02/15

VALID UNTIL: 12/11/17

 

The date it was stamped by immigration re entering the UK is:

 

2 MAY 2015

 

So am I wrong in thinking that I need to be applying 28 days before the 12/11/17? Should it be 28 days before November 2nd which is 30 months after 2nd of May? (the date she entered the UK on her spouse visa) which would be October 5th?

 

Thanks 7by7

 

The earliest she can officially apply is after living in the UK for 30 months, i.e. 2/11/17; although as said, she can submit her application up to 28 days before this date.

 

As she must have a valid leave/visa when she applies, the latest she can apply is the day her current leave/visa expires, i.e. 12/11/17.

 

 

 

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