New spousal rules are increasingly pointless

By Chris Fysh on March 5, 2014 in Uncategorized

So Mrs May, of whom I am very fond, has clearly done a silly thing in making spousal visas so much more convoluted.

For those who haven’t noticed, sponsors now need to have been in employment for 6 months before they can sponsor their partners to come to the UK, and if not, well, they have to wait. There are exceptions, but not many people have £62k lying around. So we have a host of couples who are having to be theoretically living apart for six months while the Brit gets a job and earns enough money.

I’m not sure what the point of this is. If someone is earning enough to support their family then why do they have to have had the job for 6 months? Why not 4 months? Why not 3 weeks? Why not, as before, have evidence that they are about to start the job? I don’t mind changes to the immigration rules, but some logic would be nice. Or even some explanation. Trixie, can you explain? Is there a logical reason or is this simply another way of cutting numbers?

The thing is… it’s not working. In the past two weeks I have had two clients who I have successfully helped with visit visas, specifically so that they could live in the UK with their UK national partners during that six month period. In both applications we have been honest. We have said that the applicant wants to be in the UK for 5 or 6 months, that in the future they will apply for a settlement visa, but as they now don’t qualify, they want to be able to visit for a reasonably long time. One applicant was from a rich, Western, visa-free country and the other was from a poor, Eastern developing nation. Both were approved.

And it’s silly. Especially with my Western client – this is a woman who was earning really good money in her home country, and in the UK she would probably be earning good money – paying tax, being a net contributor to the UK economy. But because of these new rules, she’s going to spend the next six months washing her husband’s pants instead. Well, probably not, but you get the gist.

Anyway, this is a positive post, as I am very pleased that these applications weren’t refused on ‘intent to return’. But I’m annoyed that an intelligent professional woman isn’t allowed to spend the next six months making herself useful and being a ‘good immigrant’, but has to have a long holiday instead.

I hope she enjoys the enforced rest!

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Chris FyshView all posts by Chris Fysh