We are reproducing the instructions in easy-to-read, continuous document for the benefit of our readers.
Apply to join family living permanently in the UK
You’ll need a ‘family of a settled person’ visa if you’re from outside theEuropean Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland and you want to join, for 6 months or more, a partner or family member who’s living in the UK permanently.
You don’t need a ‘family of a settled person’ visa to visit your family for up to 6 months, but you should check if you need a Family Visitor visa.
Your family member can:
If you meet the eligibility requirements, you can apply to:
You may need to apply in a different way if:
How long it takes
You should get a decision on your visa within 12 weeks.
Check the guide to processing times to find out how long getting a visa might take in your country.
Joining your partner or parent
Coming to look after your child
Adult who needs to be looked after by a relative
What you can and can’t do with your visa
You can use your ‘family of a settled person’ visa to:
§ You can’t get public funds for yourself and any dependants.
Extend your stay
You may be able to apply to extend your visa or settle in the UK permanently.
You can apply for a family permit instead of a ‘family of a settled person’ visa if the person you’ll be joining is from a country in the European Economic Area (EEA) (excluding the UK) or from Switzerland.
If you’re already in the UK
You can’t apply for a ‘family of a settled person’ visa - you must apply to remain in the UK with family instead.
Reunite with a partner or parent in the UK
You should check if you can apply for ‘family reunion’ to stay with a partner or parent who has asylum or humanitarian protection in the UK.
Your relationship must have started before your family member’s departure from their home country because of persecution.
To apply for a ‘family of a settled person’ visa, you must be from outside theEuropean Economic Area (EEA) or Switzerland.
Your partner or family member must have one of the following:
You must also prove that:
Joining your partner
You must prove that you and your partner are 18 or over and in a genuine relationship.
You must be one of the following:
You must prove that any previous relationships you or your partner had are permanently broken down.
You must also meet the financial requirement of:
§£18,600 per year if you’re applying only for yourself
§£22,400 per year for you and one child
§£2,400 per year for each additional child
You won’t need to prove you have this money if you or your partner get certain disability benefits or Carer’s Allowance, but you’ll need to adequately accommodate and support yourselves and any dependants.
You must prove that you plan to marry or become civil partners within 6 months of arriving in the UK.
You won’t be able to work during your engagement.
Bringing your children
Your children must be under 18.
You must name your children on your application, but you’ll need to apply for them separately.
Joining your parents
You must be under 18 and all of the following must apply:
§you’ll be living with your parent or parents
§you’re not married, in a civil partnership or living an independent life
§you’ll be supported and accommodated adequately without using public funds, or you meet the financial requirement
Coming to look after your child
Your child must be under 18 and living in the UK
You must prove that you’re not able to apply as a partner and that either:
§ you’re the only parent of the child and you’re the only person who’s responsible for them (you have ‘sole responsibility’)
§ your child lives permanently with another parent or carer who’s British or settled in the UK and not your partner, and you want to help raise them
You must be able to support and accommodate yourself without claiming public funds.
Coming to be cared for - you’re an adult dependent relative
You must be dependent on a parent, grandchild, brother, sister, son or daughter of someone living permanently in the UK.
You must prove that:
§ you need long-term care to do everyday personal and household tasks
§ the care you need is not available or affordable in the country you live in
§ the person you’ll be joining in the UK will be able to support, accommodate and care for you without claiming public funds for at least 5 years
§ you’re 18 or over
4. Knowledge of English
You may need to prove your knowledge of the English language when you apply, unless you’re applying in a 10-year route.
You can prove your knowledge of English by either:
§ passing an approved English language test with at least CEFR level A1 in speaking and listening
§ having an academic qualification that was taught in English and is recognised by UK NARIC as being equivalent to a UK bachelor’s degree
You may be able to meet the English language requirement in other ways - check the guidance in the application form.
You won’t need to prove your knowledge of English if you’re a national of one of these countries:
You may not have to prove your knowledge of English in other circumstances - check the guidance in the application form.
5. Documents you need to provide
You’ll need to provide:
You may need to provide additional documents depending on your circumstances - eg a sponsorship form from your family member in the UK.
You’ll need to have a blank page in your passport on which to put the visa.
If you’re already in the UK, you should apply to remain in the UK with family instead.
Apply outside the UK
You must apply online for this visa.
You’ll need to have your fingerprints and photograph (known as ‘biometric information’) taken at a visa application centre as part of your application.
You may be able to get your visa faster or other services depending on what country you’re in - check with your visa application centre.
You can’t apply online if you’re living in North Korea.
To apply from North Korea you must download and fill in form VAF4A and appendix 2.
You might also need:
§ You should also read:
Apply in the UK
You can apply to extend your visa.
7. Extend your visa
You can apply to extend your visa towards the end of your stay.
You must apply before your visa expires.
When you’re eligible, you can apply to settle. Settlement means you can stay in the UK without time limits.
Your initial stay will be:
You’re an adult dependent relative
Your initial stay will be: