A Guide to UK Spouse Visa ILR Requirements for Settlement 2021
This guidance relates to UK spouse visa ILR requirements under 5-year route for the spouse, civil, unmarried, and same-sex partner of a person present and settled. And provides the details of UK spouse visa ILR statistics from 2008 to 2017.
Spouse Visa ILR Requirements and Set (M) guidance notes
The SET(M) Form is for applying ILR as the partner of a person present and settled. Accordingly, SET(M) Form is only for those ILR applicants who have a 30-month limited leave to remain as a partner. And cumulatively have completed at least 60-months (5-years) as partners under Appendix FM.
How to count the 5-year period for UK Spouse Visa ILR?
The 5-Year period for a UK spouse visa ILR application starts from the date on which an applicant:
- entered the UK as a Spouse or Civil Partner or
- first got leave to remain as a Spouse, Civil, Unmarried or Same-Sex Partner. For instance, if an applicant enters as a fiancé, then the 5-year ILR period counts from the date on which an applicant got the first leave to remain as a spouse or partner under Appendix FM
Please note, a spouse can apply for ILR visa application on SET(M) Form no more than 28 days before the extant leave expires or completing at-least 60 months.
UK Spouse Visa ILR SET(M) Requirements
The requirements to be met by an applicant for indefinite leave to remain (ILR) as the spouse, civil, unmarried, or same-sex partner of a British citizen, settled person, or person with refugee leave or humanitarian protection are set out in Section R-ILRP1.1 of Appendix FM. Accordingly, the applicant:
- and their partner need to be in the UK for making a valid ILR application
- must not fall for refusal under any of the suitability grounds in Section S-ILR: Suitability for ILR
- needs to meet all the requirements of Section E-ILRP: Eligibility for ILR as a partner
- needs to meet all the eligibility requirements for leave to remain under E-LTRP.1.2.-1.12. and ELTRP.2.1 if paragraph EX.1. is applicable
Therefore, if an applicant meets the requirements of paragraph R-ILRP.1.1 then gets indefinite leave to remain as a spouse under D-ILRP.1.1.
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2. Limited Leave
UK Spouse Visa ILR Requirements
If an applicant fails to meet all the spouse visa ILR requirements due to either suitability under paragraph S-ILR.1.5. or S-ILR.1.6. applies or inability to demonstrate sufficient knowledge of the English language and life in the UK requirement in accordance with Appendix KoLL under paragraph D-ILRP.1.2. then the spouse, a civil, unmarried, same-sex partner is only granted a further limited leave to remain as a partner for a period not exceeding 30 months. Moreover, the limited leave to remain is subject to a condition of no recourse to public funds. And the applicant needs to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge under the Immigration (Health Charge) Order 2014.
Limited Leave under the 10-year route
Under paragraph D-ILRP.1.3., if the applicant meets the requirements for leave to remain as a partner under the 10-year route, they will be granted leave to remain for a period not exceeding 30 months as a partner under paragraph D-LTRP.1.2. of Appendix FM. Moreover, under paragraph GEN.1.11A, this grant of limited leave will normally be subject to a condition of no recourse to public funds, unless the applicant has provided the decision maker with satisfactory evidence that they are destitute, or satisfactory evidence that there are particularly compelling reasons relating to the welfare of a child of a parent in receipt of an exceptionally low income.
Extant of Leave
If an applicant has extant leave as a partner under Appendix FM at the date of application, any period of extant leave, up to a maximum of 28 days adds to the period of leave under paragraph D-LTRP.1.2. or DILRP.1.2. However, an applicant with extant leave may get a period of leave slightly more than 30 months.
Reapplying for Spouse Visa ILR after a Limited Leave
If the applicant has already completed 60 or 120 months in the UK with limited leave as a partner; however, for any reason has not meet the requirements for indefinite leave to remain, then will be eligible to make a further charged ILR application at any time within the 30-month period of leave granted under paragraph D-LTRP.1.2. or D-ILRP.1.2. Accordingly, an applicant does not need to wait until the expiry of the limited leave. Nevertheless, if an applicant does not become eligible for an ILR then should make the next application within 28-days before the expiry of the limited leave.
UK Spouse Visa ILR Requirements
If a partner gets a leave to remain under DLTRP.1.2. or D-ILRP.1.2., then the decision maker also likely to consider any dependent child included in the application under paragraph R-LTRC.1.1 of Appendix FM. If the child meets the requirements the gets a leave to remain under paragraph D-LTRC.1.1.
Moreover, if a spouse, civil, unmarried, or same-sex partner does not meet the requirements for ILR (settlement) under paragraph D-ILRP.1.1, or for further leave to remain under D-ILRP.1.2 or DILRP.1.3, and there are no exceptional circumstances then the Home Office is quite likely to refuse the ILR application.
UK Spouse Visa ILR Refusal
If a spouse, civil, unmarried, or same-sex partner does not meet the requirements for ILR (settlement) under paragraph D-ILRP.1.1, or for further leave to remain under D-ILRP.1.2 or DILRP.1.3, and there are no exceptional circumstances then the Home Office is quite likely to refuse the ILR application.
UK Spouse Visa ILR Success and Refusal Rate 2008-17
During 2008-17, a total of 331,532 settlements (ILR) granted based on marriage to 114,646 husbands and 216,886 wives under the family route. During the 2008-17 period, the spouse visa ILR grants based on marriage were highest in 2009 (55,600). And the average for 2008-17 is 33,153 per year. However, after, there has been a significant decrease in the spouse visa ILR settlement grants based on marriage. Therefore, during 2008-18, settlement grants experienced an overall declining trend and touching the lowest ebb (4,280) in 2017. Accordingly, the share of spouse settlement grants in the total ILR grants has decreased from 32.64% to only 6.57%.
To know more, please refer to UK Visa and Immigration Statistics.
UK Spouse Visa ILR Success Rate
During the 2008-17 period, the average UK spouse visa ILR success and refusal rate was 95.03% and 5.19%, respectively. The spouse visa ILR success rate has oscillated within a narrow band during the period. In 2013 the UK spouse visa ILR success rate was the highest (96.94%) and lowest (91.89%) in 2016. However, subsequently in 2017 the UK spouse visa ILR success rate has slightly improved to reach a level of 94.65%.
UK Spouse Visa ILR Refusal Rate
The average spouse visa ILR refusal rate for the 2008-17 period is 5.23%. In 2016 the ILR refusal rate shot to 8.11%; however, subsequently in 2017 came down to 5.35%, which is still slightly higher than the period average of 5.23%.
During the 2008-17, a total of 216,886 wives get spouse visa ILR grants based on marriage. Indeed, a bulk of (84.6%) of the UK spouse visa ILR grants made to wives of British Citizens. However, the decreasing trend in the grants of ILR to wives was experienced in all major and minor sub-categories, except for domestic violence and bereaved partner visa category. The most notable decrease recorded in the same-sex partner category. As the number of grants nosedived from 53 in 2008 to merely 1 in 2017.
UK Spouse Visa ILR Grants 2008-17 (Wives)
|Husband a British citizen||180,960|
|Husband already settled in the UK but not British||15,499|
|Granted settlement due to domestic violence after leave to remain granted as a spouse||7,582|
|Spouses granted settlement on arrival||3,317|
|Civil Partner a British citizen||979|
|a deceased husband after leave to remain granted as a wife||581|
|Civil Partner already settled here but not British||101|
During the 2008-17, a total of 114,646 husbands get spouse visa ILR based on marriage in the following ten categories. A bulk of (86.2%) of the total spouse visa ILR grants to husbands based on marriage were granted to husbands of British Citizens. However, the decreasing trend in the grants of ILR to husbands was experienced in all major and minor sub-categories, except for domestic violence and bereaved partner visa category. The most notable decrease is in the same-sex partner category. As the number of grants nosedived from 212 in 2008 to merely 3 in 2017.
UK Spouse Visa ILR Grants 2008-17 (Husbands)
|Wife a British citizen||98,852|
|Wife already settled in the UK but not British||6,919|
|Civil Partner a British citizen||3,458|
|Spouses granted settlement on arrival||1,351|
|Granted settlement due to domestic violence after leave to remain granted as a spouse||652|
|A deceased wife after leave to remain granted as a husband||153|
|Civil Partner already settled here but not British||250|
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