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Personal Immigration

Dependant Visa

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Dependant Visa

The Dependant visa category is for the family members of Point Based System (PBS) and Appendix W migrants to enter and remain with them in the UK. The family members must be the spouse, civil partner, unmarried/same sex partner or a child (under the age of 18 years old on initial application) to qualify.

Dependant Visa Eligibility Requirements

In order to qualify for entry clearance or leave to remain as the spouse or partner of a PBS or Appendix W migrant, the applicant must be above 18 years old and satisfy the below requirements.

  • Be the spouse, civil partner, unmarried partner or same sex partner of a person a PBS or Appendix W migrant
  • Being granted leave at the same time or, if applying for an extension of stay, partner has ILR as a PBS or Appendix W migrant or has obtained British citizenship after having ILR as PBS or Appendix W migrant
  • Have been living in a relationship similar to marriage or civil partnership for a period of at least 2 years (if applying as unmarried partner)
  • Relationship is genuine,ongoing and subsisting and do not intend to stay in the UK beyond the leave granted to PBS or Appendix W migrant
  • Satisfy the maintenance funds requirement if applicable to the relevant category
  • Meet the specified course requirement if applying as a Student Dependant

In case of a child, the applicant must be under 18 years old at the date of first application under this category. The child applicant also should not have formed an independent family unit and are not leading an independent life to qualify as a dependant. It is also a requirement that both parents must be awfully present in the UK or being granted entry clearance or leave to remain at the same time, unless the main applicant has sole responsibility for the child’s upbringing or there are compelling circumstances.

Conditions of Leave, Extension & Settlement

PBS Dependants are normally allowed to work in the UK. However, Tier 4 (General) student dependants will not be allowed to work whilst in the UK if the main applicant’s grant of leave is for a course of study below degree level, unless the Tier 4 migrant is a government sponsored student and the course of study is longer than six months. The Dependants of PBS migrants are also not allowed to work as a professional sportsperson, including coaching, or a doctor or dentist in training unless they have obtained a primary degree within the UK.

The family members granted with Dependant visa will generally be granted leave in line with the expiry of the PBS or Appendix W migrant’s leave. If the applicant extends their Dependant visa after the main applicant has been granted ILR (under the standard 5 year route), they will be granted a three year extension. A further extension application can be made to reach the ILR qualifying period. The Dependant partners must also need to satisfy a 180 day residency requirement when applying for settlement. They have to provide evidence that they have not spent more than 180 days in any 12 month rolling period outside the UK during the validity of any visa issued after 11 January 2018.

How can we assist?

Our Immigration lawyers at City Legal have immense experience in assisting clients on PBS & Appendix W Dependant visa applications. We are a multi award winning law firm and pride ourselves in being approachable, innovative and always going that extra mile to make sure our clients receive the individual attention they deserve. Our Immigration team maintains a high reputation and is committed to provide clear, transparent and reliable advice to our clients.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to reapply every time the main applicant changes employers?

If the main migrant changes employer or educational institution, PBS dependants can remain in the UK until the end of the validity period of their existing PBS dependant leave.

Can I switch in the UK to a point based category?

PBS Dependant visa holders are not normally allowed to switch to a main route with the exception of Tier 4 Student Dependant, who may apply to switch to Tier 2 General from within the UK. It is worth noting that a Restricted Certificate of Sponsorship will still be required, even though the switch could take place in the country.

Can I apply for settlement if the main applicant was granted ILR under a 10 year route?

Partners who do not hold a dependant visa before the main applicant is granted ILR or partners of those who were granted ILR under 10 year long residence, will have to apply as the spouse/partner of a settled person and wait 5 years in that category before applying for settlement.

Is there an English Language requirement for Dependant visa?

There is no requirement to prove English Language proficiency under this category. However, it’s worth noting that if applicants wish to apply for Settlement, they will need to meet both English language and Life in the UK requirements.

Is there a specific course requirement for Tier 4 PBS Dependants?

In order for Tier 4 General student migrants to bring family members as dependants, they must be normally sponsored by a higher education institution on a course level 7 or above that lasts 9 months or more. Alternatively, if the main applicant is a new government sponsored student studying a course of more than 6 months or a Doctorate Extension Scheme student, they will also qualify.
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