Based on ECO-Friendly’s nine year experience in UK Immigration law, because applicants do not know the pros and cons for each type of visa, they are often left in this very difficult situation, a dilemma, so to speak, wondering what UK visa to apply for. It is thus very difficult for them to resolve and decide on this issue of whether to just visit or marry their British partner in the UK.
Fortunately, we at ECO Immigration Consultancy understand this predicament and are here to assist the applicant weigh the different issues that will help the struggling boyfriend, girlfriend, future fiancées/fiancé or future spouses from the Philippines to have a better understanding of the situation and make better decisions for their future.
Here are some ECO-Friendly tips for the Filipino applicants to at least ease the stress and have some idea on the matter.
First off, the most important issue which the applicant needs to consider is the seriousness of the relationship with his or her British partner.
Do they love each other enough to actually tie the knot in the UK and for the Filipino applicant to settle permanently in the UK? In the process leaving their beloved family here in the Philippines? We all know how Filipinos are a very closely-knit family. Can he or she leave the family behind in the Philippines to actually stay in the UK for good?
If this is the case, and the applicant chooses her British partner, then the best option is to file for the UK Fiancée Visa and to fly to the UK to celebrate the marriage within the six months period provided under the UKVI rules.
After the wedding, the applicant may then file for a UK Spouse visa within the reglementary period. If she does this, after a few years, she can live happily ever after as a British national as provided under the UK law.
On the other hand, if the lovebirds merely want to test the waters and try to live together for a few weeks or months to ascertain if they are compatible and are really meant for each other, or to see if they can stand each other for a few months living together, then the UK Visit Visa is the alternative.
In this case, however, the most important matter to consider is that the applicant from the Philippines is able to show they can finance the trip and that they will return to the Philippines before the lapse of their allowed stay in the UK, if and when the UK Visit Visa application is granted.
The UK Marriage Visit Visa is also one option. In this case the couple must be serious enough to marry each other in the UK, but the partner from the Philippines is merely allowed to stay in the UK to marry the British partner for a period of six months.
The Marriage Visit Visa is a type of visit visa the main purpose of which is to permit the partners to celebrate the wedding in the UK but the Filipino applicant must return to the Philippines within six months from entry to the UK.
This visa type is usually applied for by the couple when the British sponsor/partner is not yet financially capable of complying with the financial requirements but want to marry the partner from the Philippines as soon as possible.
Remember that the Minimum Income Threshold is £18,600 annually. This means that the British sponsor must have earn at least £18,600 in the last full financial year immediately before the filing of the application.
If the British partner/sponsor earns less than this, the alternative would be for the partner from the Philippines to just visit the UK on a Marriage Visit Visa and marry his or her British partner. Once they become man and wife legally in the UK, the Filipino partner must return to the Philippines and once the British spouse complies with the minimum income threshold, the Filipina applicant can now file for a UK Spouse Visa in the Philippines.
If the abovementioned UK visas are still not applicable to the Filipina applicant, another scenario which ECO-Friendly suggests is for the couple (British sponsor/partner and the applicant from the Philippines) to marry here in the Philippines and just file for the UK Spouse Visa later when the British husband can comply with the Minimum Income Threshold.
This would be simpler since the British sponsor and the applicant from the Philippines are already married and therefore legally and morally obliged to live together since they are already man and wife under the Philippines and or UK law. Take note, however, that the Minimum Income Threshold is still required under the UK Spouse Visa.
Whatever the choice may be, rest assured that ECO-Friendly will assist you all the way.
To sum up, there are actually four options for the applicant asking questions on what to apply for:
- To file for a UK Fiancée Visa and marry in the UK and then convert to a UK Spouse Visa and then eventually file for an Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) leading to a British citizenship later
- To file for a UK Marriage Visit Visa and then return to the Philippines after the marriage, and then just apply at a later date
- To file for a UK Visit Visa for the purpose of testing the waters and see how the relationship works out
- For the British partner to go to the Philippines to marry the partner from the Philippines and later file for the UK Spouse Visa so that the applicant may later settle in the UK and then eventually become a British national
In any of these cases, it is the duty of our firm, the ECO Immigration Consultancy duty to enlighten you on the best possible course to take. We at ECO-Friendly will explain to you, in the simplest of terms but comprehensively, each and every option for you so that in the end, you may come up with a decision that would best suit your present situation.
And in the end, whether you choose to visit, marry in the UK or marry in the Philippines, we will help you every step of the way.
This is our true vocation. To help you convince the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) that you are truly qualified for the UK Visa you are applying for. Kaya nga kami ECO-Friendly e!!!
For inquiries or further details as to how we can help you. Or just to know how we will approach your application, please do not hesitate to contact us. Just click the ECO-Friendly contact box below.