Are you wondering if the end of your marriage will have a great impact on your visa? Well, you will get your answer at the end of this article.
Divorce can be very difficult for all involved. But in addition to their difficulties, their visa status has even now become more of a concern to them. Unfortunately, for many visa holders, the separation from their partner terminates their stay in the UK. But this rule has some exceptions. If you find yourself in this situation, you must get a piece of legal advice before you go on with your divorce or separation.
Your immigration status determines your stay in the UK. Your partner breaking out with you is not the end of it for you in the UK. There are other ways you may not know about that could still guarantee your stay in the country.
Below are some of those ways and statuses that can still keep you in the UK:
1) Spouse Visa
A spouse visa is granted to keep the marriage partners together. It is often accepted if the UK citizen sponsors his spouse. However, this visa is only valid if the partners stay together. As soon as the marriage is dissolved, the visa is no longer valid. After your relationship ends before you submit your application for ILR, your leave to remain in the UK also ends. The authorities may not allow you to stay in the UK after your separation from the sponsor even you may meet the requirements for a different visa. You can confirm if you think you qualify.
2) Possession of ILR (Indefinite Leave to Remain)
If your divorce or separation comes after submitting your nationality application or you secured your ILR status, there will not be any effect on your immigration status.
So, it might be smart to get advice from a professional so you can at least apply for your Indefinite Leave to Remain before you file a divorce against your partner.
You must inform the authorities about the changed status of your marriage because they will find it out sooner or later. If they suspect that you kept this fact a secret, your visa may get at risk.
3) Being a Victim of Domestic violence
Experiencing domestic violence gives you the eligibility to apply for settlement. The UK takes the action against the situation and grants you protection. You are only qualified if your partner is a British citizen. It is important that you are truthful and that you provide clear proof that you were the one that suffered the violence or abuse and it is why your relationship is ending.
You can file for domestic violence if you were a victim with your partner or their family. The UK frowns at this act and compensates the victims of the situation as it will be hard for a person who has already suffered also suffers the cost of leave to remain visa.
As you already know that divorce doesn’t necessarily terminate your stay in the UK, there are other options you can explore if you want to stay in the UK. You must seek professional legal help to switch your visa status. Choosing the right type of visa to alternate to is extremely important. Discuss your case extensively with your lawyer and evaluate options carefully. You may switch to:
If you are successful in maintaining a spouse visa for 5 years, you are no longer dependent on your spouse to stay in the UK. You are eligible to apply for IRL that lifts any restrictions to live or work in the country. But for IRL applications, you must pass certain tests and requirements.
2) Family Life:
If you are the parent of one or more settled children in the UK, you may remain if you oblige to the following:
(i) If you are responsible for taking care of your child/children. There must be something to prove that you are taking a huge part in this. You must also present evidence that shows proof that you plan to continue to take care of the children even after you apply.
(ii) If you have a child that you have raised for more than eight years.
3) Work Visa:
An employer can decide to be your sponsor if you have been working for them for a long-time.
Speak to an immigration advisor today to know more about the effects of your marital status on your immigration status.