What is Refugee Family Reunion?
Refugee Family Reunion is a legal opportunity for a foreign citizen who has received refugee status in the UK to reunite with family members staying outside the United Kingdom. Spouses, minors, and their partners can take advantage of this opportunity.
The main thing is that, within the framework of this humanitarian program, the refugee’s petition about family reunification UK will be satisfied. In this case, in accordance with British immigration law, family members of a person with refugee status will receive leave to stay in the United Kingdom. The main condition is that the leave for the stay of relatives cannot exceed the period that was previously granted to the refugee for residence on the territory of the state. The situation will be similar in the case when a refugee has received Indefinite Leave. Citizens who are recognized as family members of the sponsor will also receive the appropriate legal status.
When getting all the necessary permissions, an important feature should be taken into account. If the immigration service approves the application for family reunification of a refugee, this does not mean the possibility of obtaining refugee status, exactly like other humanitarian protection. This is simply permission from the authorities for relatives to relocate to their sponsor and stay with him for the duration of their stay in the country. Legal refugee status can be granted only to those who have applied for asylum and received confirmation.
Who is eligible to apply for a Family Reunion application?
The family reunification program allows the refugee’s partner or children to visit the UK. The authorities of the kingdom also issue refugee spouse visas in the UK. The main thing is that the following conditions are met:
- those who wish to reunite under the humanitarian program must first be a member of the family before making the decision to relocate;
- a citizen has received official refugee status, permission to settle or receive assistance, and five years of humanitarian protection.
Another important criterion is the age limit. The applicant cannot be under the age of 18, otherwise, taking into account the requirements of the legislation, the migration services will be forced to refuse the applicant’s family reunification. In a similar situation, the authorities will refuse if a decision has not yet been made regarding the refugee—the application for asylum is under consideration.
Legal requirements for refugee partners to apply for Family Reunion
Persons with refugee status can apply for the reunification program.
In accordance with the family reunion scheme, the applicant must prove the following facts:
- The relationship with the person being reunited is genuine and recognized by UK law. The refugee and his partner are married or in a civil partnership.
- He intends to live with the reunited person after obtaining a visa.
An alternative option of reunification with a person is also possible, even if the applicant is not officially married or in a partnership. In this case, it is enough to:
- a person received legal refugee status or rights under the humanitarian protection program on or after October 9, 2006;
- the applicant has provided all documents, evidence and has been in the UK since October 9, 2006, with refugee status or under humanitarian protection, and has been in a marriage or civil partnership relationship for at least 2 years.
The UK legislator gives the refugee the opportunity to reunite with a person close to him, if the applicant plans to continue their relationship, live together, and lead a life. This fully complies with family reunion visa requirements for the UK.
The essence of the concept of “genuine relationship” in the application for Family Reunion
The procedure may be refused if the applicant has a criminal record in the UK. Also, a gross violation of the family reunion immigration rules is the submission of false and deliberately false information. The refusal will also be given in cases of violation of the immigration legislation of the island state, for example, in violation of the terms of stay and registration at the place of arrival.
Proof of serious intentions and trustworthiness is cohabitation, which is confirmation of the fact that the relationship is genuine. The Ministry of Internal Affairs studies and takes into account documents on financial solvency. Solvency is confirmed by a joint bank account, the rental of an apartment under a contract, and the availability of utility bills.
Requirements for children to apply for Family Reunion
The migration authorities look at the following facts regarding children:
- the child is under 18 years of age;
- planned cohabitation with the applicant, his spouse, or partner;
- is not married, does not have a civil partner.
How do I apply for and pay for a Family Reunion?
British immigration law has optimized the application process. Everything is available online, for free, in the UK and abroad.The main stage is to fill out the VAF4A form with Appendix 4.
The family reunion scheme is entitled to both the partner and the applicant’s child.
• the applicant has an official refugee status;
• family members have a strong family relationship with the applicant and can prove it;
• family members of the applicant, who live in the territory of the kingdom, the application is submitted for the first time.
When are the deadlines for obtaining a Family Reunion visa in the United Kingdom?
The legislation of the United Kingdom defines the maximum period for obtaining a visa for family reunification. All stages take no more than 12 weeks. This period can be shortened if the applicant is able to provide all the information necessary for consideration and decision-making by the Ministry of Internal Affairs.
How can Sterling Law help?
Family reunification of a refugee in the UK is a procedure that allows you to legally enter the country if citizens of other countries have previously received refugee status and live in the United Kingdom.
Our immigration lawyers will help you process the documents. This is real family reunion guidance. Specialists will collect, review the documents, translate them, prepare additional evidence, provide control and support throughout the registration process, and consider the application. Lawyers perfectly know the immigration rules of the UK, are result-oriented, so there are no difficult situations for them in working with the applicant and obtaining Partner and Family visas for the UK.