Spouse probation – What is the effect of the probationary period increase?
ASK THE EXPERT | How does the increase in the probationary period affect an indefinite leave to remain?
Q: In your latest newsletter you mentioned that the probationary period for spousal visas could increase. What effect could this potentially have if you hold indefinite leave to remain?
A: According to a leaked cabinet letter there are some proposed immigration changes for the family migration route. In the letter a new income of £25,700 per year is proposed for anyone looking to bring a spouse, partner or dependant to the UK from outside the EU, from June 2012. This minimum income threshold is also set to rise with each dependant attached to the application.
It is further proposed in the letter that the current probation period for spouses and partners must be increased from 2 years to 5 years, before they can apply to live permanently in theUK. These changes are proposed to take effect in June 2012.
As far as we understand at present it will not be made retrospectively applicable, we therefore are of the understanding that it will only relate to applicants applying for spouse visas after June 2012. The new rules will not affect applicants already holding indefinite leave to remain.
BIC would however like to advise all clients who want to make use of the family migration route, to apply as soon as possible, in order to avoid these possible new measures.
Director of Breytenbachs Immigration Consultants Limited
www.bic-immigration.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
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