Unmarried Partner Visa

Unmarried Partner Visa allows unmarried partners to work and stay in the UK. Since 2014, same-sex couples also have been permitted to marry.

What is an Unmarried Partner Relationship? 

According to the Immigration Rules and the EEA regulations, the term unmarried partner relationship is be defined as:

“Two persons living together in a relationship akin to marriage for at least two years”.

This definition does not include casual acquaintances or any unstable relationships in which neither of the parties has any long-term intentions to live together. The phrase “akin to marriage or civil marriage” means a relationship that is similar in nature to a marriage or civil partnership to include unmarried and same-sex relationships. This can be proved by probing bank statements or utility bills.

Unmarried partners: eligibility Criteria 

Immigration status requirements

The applicant for unmarried parnter visa must:

  • have been living together with their partner who has British nationality or has had UK settled status for at least 2 years, or

  • be in a civil partnership or marriage which is recognised in the UK; or

  • be a fiance, fiancee, or proposed civil partner and will marry or enter into a civil partnership in the UK within 6 months of arriving. 

Financial Requirements for unmarried partners visa

There is a minimum earnings requirement of £18,600  to sponsor a partner. If children are also sponsored, the minimum earnings requirement rises to £22,400 for the first child, and then £2,400 for each additional child.

English Language Requirements for unmarried partners visa

The applicant will need to demonstrate that they are able to speak and understand English at level A1 of the Common European Framework of Reference.

Other Requirements for unmarried partners visa

To successfully apply for the Unmarried Partner Visa, the following criteria must be satisfied:

  • the applicant must have ended any previous relationships, including marriages and civil partnerships.

  • there must be suitable accommodation available for the couple.

  • Both parties must be 18 or over and intend to continue living together. 

Unmarried partners visa: condition of stay

The validity of an unmarried partner visa depends on where the individual is applying from. If applying from overseas, the visa will be issued for a period of 33 months. However, if the applicant is making the application in the UK, then the visa will be valid for 30 months. This can be extended for a further 30 months.

Does unmarried partners visa route lead to settlement? 

Yes, the holders of this visa can apply for the settlement, known as Indefinite Leave to Remain after 5 years of continuous residence in the UK.

Unmarried partners visa: how to apply and fees

The Application must be submitted online. It costs £1,033 to apply from inside the UK and £1,523 to apply in the UK.  The healthcare surcharge fee (£624 per year) and biometric information fee (£19.20) must be paid separately.

The decision is usually made within 12 weeks if the application was made from outside the UK and 8 weeks if made from inside the UK. Individuals may also opt for the premium service to get a faster decision (paid separately).

Unmarried partners visa: refusals

Refusals happen and can be disappointing and stressful. However, our immigration team may challenge the refusal in the following ways:

  • Submit a new application 


  • Lodge an appeal with the First-Tier Tribunal.

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