In the light of Appendix V and immigration rules, this guidance relates to UK marriage and proposed civil partner visitor visa requirements, application fees, processing time and checklist of the supporting documents.

UK Marriage Visitor Visa Guidance

Indeed, a visitor on a standard visit visa cannot get married or form a civil partnership in the UK. Therefore, a visa national, who has a valid standard visit visa can neither give notice of intention nor get married in the UK. Accordingly, a visa-national (as well as non-visa national) needs to apply for a UK marriage visa if he/she is visiting for getting married, forming a civil partnership, or giving a notice of marriage/civil partnership.

UK Marriage Visitor Visa Requirements

In order to get a marriage visitor visa, an applicant must:

  1. be aged 18 years or over
  2. have a valid endorsement with the name of the fiancé(e) or proposed civil partner in the UK
  3. intend to genuinely get marry or form a civil partnership in the UK or give notice of marriage/civil partnership in the UK
  4. not intend to give notice of or enter into a sham marriage or civil partnership in the UK, within the validity period covered by the marriage visitor visa
  5. meet the requirements under the paragraphs V 4.2 – V 4.10 of Appendix V of Immigration Rules

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1. UK Marriage Visitor Visa Minimum Age Requirements

For a UK marriage visitor visa, an applicant must be 18 years or above. In fact, the UK marriage visitor visa requirements does not specify the min age of the fiance or proposed civil partner in the UK. However, for UK spouse visa, spouse visa extension and fiance visa, the min age of both the applicant and that of UK sponsor (partner) is 18 years or more at the time of application. Moreover, in England and Wales, the minimum age for marriage or civil partnership without parental or other third-party permission is 18 years. However, the minimum age for marriage or civil partnership in Scotland is 16 years. And there is no requirement for parental or third-party permission.

2. UK Marriage Visitor Visa Valid Endorsement Requirements

In terms of paragraph V 6.2 of Appendix V, a marriage visitor must have a valid visa vignette on the travel document, usually a passport, with the name of the visitor’s fiancé(e) or proposed civil partner in the UK.

3. UK Marriage Visitor Visa Genuine Intentions Requirements

Applicants need to give conclusive evidence regarding the necessary arrangements for effectuating marriage or civil partnership in the UK. Accordingly, an applicant needs to provide adequate evidence to establish the genuine intentions of getting married in the UK. Perhaps, the evidence may include:

  • Payment Receipts for the Marriage/Civil Partnership Venue
  • Correspondence details with the registered office for booking confirmation
  • Correspondence with Church/Mosque etc.
  • Any other relevant arrangements

If a person is intending to visit the UK for giving notice at a registered office then needs to clearly establish this fact in the marriage visit visa application. Accordingly, an applicant may furnish the confirmation of a provisional advance booking for giving the notice. Moreover, an applicant may also include an appointment card or email correspondence with the registered office.

4. Not a Sham Marriage or Civil Partnership

Certainly, an applicant needs to provide all the necessary evidence that the marriage or civil partnership is bona fide and not sham. In fact, the onus of proof is on the applicant. Therefore, an applicant needs to clarify the following points in the UK marriage visitor visa application:

  1. details of the necessary arrangements made for the undertaking marriage or forming a civil partnership
  2. the strength and genuineness of the relationship. For instance, how and when the applicant has met with the fiance or proposed partner? What is their background, interests, education level, etc?
  3. the future plans after getting married
  4. details of the living arrangements after getting marriage or forming civil partnership

If an applicant is unable to satisfy that the intentions of getting married or forming a civil partnership are genuine then the application is likely to refuse under Paragraph V 6.3 (c) of Appendix V.

5. Requirements under Paragraph V4.2-10 of Appendix V

Certainly, for getting a UK marriage visitor visa, an applicant needs to meet the visit visa requirements under paragraph V 4.2-10 of Appendix V. Accordingly, an applicant must have a genuine intention to visit and return home at the end of the trip. And must have access to sufficient funds to cover the trip costs without recourse to public funds in the UK. However, like a standard visitor, a third party can sponsor the trip cost. Moreover, the applicant needs to prove that he/she doesn’t intend to undertake work or study in the UK. And avail medical treatment at public expense in the UK.

UK Marriage Visitor Visa Immigration Rules

Eligibility Requirements for a Marriage or Civil Partnership Visit Visa

V 6.1 An applicant for a marriage or civil partnership visit visa must satisfy the decision maker that they meet the requirements at V 4.2 – V 4.10 and must be aged 18 or over.

V 6.2 On arrival in the UK a visitor coming to marry or form a civil partnership, or give notice of this, in the UK must have a valid visit visa endorsed with this purpose and the name of the holder’s fiancé(e) or proposed civil partner.

Additional eligibility requirements for a marriage or civil partnership visit visa

V 6.3 An applicant seeking to come to the UK as a visitor who wishes to give notice of marriage or civil partnership, or marry or form a civil partnership, in the UK during that visit must satisfy the decision maker that they:
(a) intend to give notice of marriage or civil partnership; or
(b) intend to marry or form a civil partnership; and
(c) do not intend to give notice of or enter into a sham marriage or sham civil partnership, within the validity period covered by their visit visa.

Part V6 Appendix V for Visitors

UK Marriage Visitor Visa Fees and Processing Time

A visa national or non-visa national can apply for a UK marriage visitor visa online and the application fee is £95. Moreover, the UK marriage visa application processing time is usually 3-6 weeks. However, an applicant can expedite the UK marriage visitor visa processing time by purchasing the priority service. Please note: an applicant can only apply for a marriage visitor visa from outside the UK. And the maximum duration of stay in the UK on a marriage visitor visa is 180 days or six months.

Difference between UK Marriage Visitor and Fiancé Visas

Apparently, a fiancé visa application is made under Appendix FM with a view to get married or form a civil partnership in the UK. Moreover, after the marriage/civil partnership, an applicant can apply for the leave to remain as a spouse or civil partner in the UK. And subsequently can get a permanent settlement (ILR) under the spouse visa 5 or 10-year routes in the UK. However, an applicant applies for a UK marriage visitor visa under Appendix V for Visitors. Therefore, like any other visitor, needs to return to the country of residence) at the end of the journey.

UK Marriage Visitor Visa Extension Requirements

Apparently, a genuine marriage visitor may not need more than 2-3 months to perform all marriage related activities. Perhaps, this 2-3 month period may also include a post-marriage honeymoon. Therefore, normally it is not appropriate to apply for a marriage visit visa extension. Perhaps, if there are exceptional circumstances, then a marriage visitor may apply for an extension. However, the chances of a successful UK marriage visitor visa extension are very remote.

UK Marriage Visitor Visa Requirements for Non-Visa Nationals

Indeed, in terms of paragraph V 1.3 of Appendix V, a non-visa national such as citizens of US, Canada, Australia, New Zealand etc need to apply for a UK marriage visitor visa if he/she is visiting the UK to marry or to form a civil partnership, or to give notice of marriage/civil partnership in the UK. Therefore, if a non-visa national is entering the UK for marriage, forming a civil partnership or giving notice of marriage/civil partnership without having a valid marriage visitor visa then is not eligible for entry clearance in the UK.

Notice of Marriage or Civil Partnership

Apparently, it is mandatory for a visitor to furnish a formal notice at a registered office for effectuating marriage or civil partnership in the UK. Perhaps, in England and Wales, a formal notice of intention is required to be given in person. Accordingly, for marriage/civil partnership in England or Wales, both the parties need to give formal notice of marriage/civil partnership at a local register office. However, in Scotland and Northern Ireland, one can also send a notice of marriage or civil partnership by post.

Time Limits

Apparently, one can give notice of marriage from 30 days to 12 months prior to the date of the marriage. For instance, if the date of marriage is April 30, 2020, then one can give notice of marriage between May 1, 2019, and March 31, 2020. And the notice must be given at a registered office in the district where the applicant’s fiance or proposed civil partner have resided for 8 days prior to the appointment. Moreover, both the parties need to be in England or Wales for at least seven days immediately before giving the notice of marriage. However, it doesn’t matter if either party moves to a different address after giving the notice of intention.

Converting Civil Partnership to Marriage on a Standard Visitor Visa

Indeed, a visitor on a standard visa, can convert an existing civil partnership to marriage in the UK. Therefore, a visa-national does not require a UK marriage visitor visa merely to convert an existing civil partnership to marriage. However, a visitor can only change a civil partnership to a formal marriage if the civil partnership took place under the prevailing laws of England, Wales or Scotland.

Non-Visa Nationals

If a non-visa national is entering the UK to convert an existing civil partnership to a formal marriage, then does not need to have a UK marriage visitor visa for entry clearance. Therefore, such individuals can seek entry as a standard visitor- without a visa. However, needs to present the original certificate of a civil partnership at the border for entering the UK. And if the immigration staff find the certificate and bonafide of the person satisfactory for converting the civil partnership to a formal marriage then may grant entry clearance at the border.

Visa Nationals

Visa nationals such as citizens of Pakistan, India, KSA, UAE etc. may apply for a standard visit visa for the purpose of converting a civil partnership to marriage. The applicant is required to present the original civil partnership certificate as evidence to establish that a valid civil partnership exists.

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UK Marriage Visitor Visa Supporting Documents Requirements

Apparently, for UK marriage visitor visa, an applicant usually needs to provide following supporting documents:

  1. Print out of the online application form
  2. Current passport of the applicant
  3. If available, previous passport(s)
  4. Appointment card or email correspondence with the registered office- if an applicant is coming to the UK for giving a notice of intention
  5. For marriage or civil partnership arrangements:
    • Payment Receipts for the Marriage/Civil Partnership Venue
    • Correspondence details with the registered office for booking confirmation
    • Correspondence with Church/Mosque etc.
    • Any other relevant arrangements
  6. Fiance or proposed partner’s copy of the British Passport or permission to live in the UK
  7. Evidence of relationship with the fiance or proposed civil partner
  8. Evidence of future plans after marriage/civil partnership
  9. Employment letter, payslips and tax documents/certificate
  10. Business registration and tax certificates for self-employed applicants
  11. Evidence of funds to cover trip cost such as bank statements, term deposit receipts
  12. Evidence of assets
  13. If the applicant was previously married then either divorce or death certificate of the previous spouse
  14. If applicable, sponsor documents

UK Marriage Visitor Visa Mandatory Supporting Documents

In fact, for meeting the UK marriage visitor visa requirements, an applicant needs to provide the following mandatory documentary evidence:

  • Travel documents such as an applicant’s passport
  • If an applicant is coming to the UK for giving a notice of intention then confirmation of a provisional advance booking for giving the notice or/and
  • If an applicant is coming to the UK for marriage or a civil partnership then evidence for necessary arrangements in the UK
  • Translation of all documents, which are not in English and Welsh

Other Supporting Documents for UK Marriage Visitor Visa

Perhaps, apart from the aforesaid mandatory evidence, depending on personal circumstances, an applicant also needs to following types of supporting documents for meeting the UK marriage visitor visa requirements:

  • Income, employment and self-employment in the home country
  • Ties to the home country such as assets and property
  • Sufficient funds to meet the trip expenses i.e. cost of a return ticket, accommodation and living expenses in the UK
  • If a sponsor is paying trip costs then a sponsor’s undertaking along with the evidence of funds and accommodation

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