How can I apply for a spouse visa from inside the UK

QUESTION:I am disabled and I cannot afford my wife to return to her home country to apply for a spouse visa!

I married my wife, an American citizen, in China, where she normally resided, after living together on a visitors visa in the UK for several months.

We decided to apply for a spouse visa from China, but she unfortunately suffered theft of her laptop bag on the way to the Consulate and lost all the documents required to apply for a spouse visa (wedding certificate included).

So we returned to to UK on a vistor’s visa.

I am disabled and my benefit – barely enough to support me – is now trying to support two people, but my wife can’t work till she gets a spouse visa!

I cannot afford to send her back to America for 4-6 weeks in the hopes of a successful outcome of our spouse visa application.

I need help in getting that spouse visa, as soon as possible, in this country, on a legal aid basis, seeing as I am disabled and have no income other than benefit.

I married someone who just happens to not be from Europe. I am disabled and need her to care for me – what about my human rights? If anyone has forgotten I am BRITISH and I did NOT murder anyone.

Can anyone help me?


Generally speaking your partner would be required to make an entry clearance application for the purposes of settlement as your spouse at the British High Commission/Consulate where she normally resides.

 However, following from what you have mentioned in your post ( that is the unfortunate events she experienced in China and your personal circumstances) she may wish to consider making an application for further leave to remain in the UK/discretionary leave.

The Home Office can grant special entry clearance to individuals who cannot or are unable to meet the legal requirements under the normal immigration rules (i.e. in this case entry clearance on a spousal visa from abroad). She may be able to submit an application under discretionary leave if it can be proven with documentary evidence that there are clearly compelling and compassionate circumstances in her case.

The Home Office may then still consider whether she is able to meet the general requirements of a spousal visa and whether the circumstances in the cases are compelling and compassionate enough to consider granting her leave in country despite her not obtaining entry clearance as your spouse.

If Home Office find these factors in your favour then they can grant her discretionary leave in the UK for a specific period of time of 1-3 years.

In any case for further advice and assistance in this matter you may wish to contact the Legal Services Commission who can refer you to immigration solicitors in your local area who offer legal aid.

October 2010
Greenfields Solicitors

Related articles:
Marriage Visas – All you need to know
Overstayer? You might have grounds to apply for discretionary leave    

Disclaimer: The above article is meant to be relied upon as an informative article and in no way constitutes legal advice. Information is offered for general information purposes only, based on the current law when the information was first displayed on this website.

You should always seek advice from an appropriately qualified solicitor on any specific legal enquiry. For legal advice regarding your case, please contact Greenfields Solicitors for a Consultation with a Solicitor on 020 8884 1166.


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