A Marriage Visitor visa is for anyone over the age of 18 who would like to travel to the UK to get married, register a civil partnership or give notice of a marriage or civil partnership in the UK.
This visa allows individuals to visit the UK for up to 6 months, and during this period, they are expected to marry or enter into a civil partnership in the UK. The ceremony must be held at a venue which is licensed for this purpose.
Crucially, the Marriage Visit visa is not for those who plan to stay or settle in the UK after the marriage or civil partnership. In circumstances where an individual does plan to remain in the UK after the marriage, a fiancé visa might instead be applicable.
In order to obtain a Marriage Visit visa, individuals must be able to prove they are in a genuine and subsisting relationship, and that they have sufficient funds available which can be used to cover the costs of their visit to the UK without the need to rely on public funds.
This visa is not available to those who may qualify for British citizenship. Similarly, a Marriage Visit Visa is not required if:
- You are seeking to come to the UK to convert your UK civil partnership into a marriage (a Standard Visitor visa will be applicable for this purpose)
- You have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme or you have made a valid, in-time application to the Scheme that is still pending
- You are an Irish citizen
What you need to know
It is important to note that this route does not lead to settlement. Moreover, applicants will not be permitted to work or study in the UK whilst holding a Marriage Visit visa.
If you are eligible for this visa and intend on making an application, the earliest that one can apply is 3 months before they plan to travel. The application must be submitted from outside of the UK.
Costs and processing times
The official Home Office application fee for a Marriage Visit visa is £95. Gherson’s professional fees for assisting on such applications typically range from £3,000 - £6,000 (exclusive of VAT and disbursements).
The Home Office presently state that they intend to decide Marriage Visit visa applications within 3 weeks, although this timeframe can vary due to factors including COVID-19 processing delays and complex nature applications.
How Gherson can assist
Gherson has extensive experience with Visit Visa applications. If you are interested in applying for a visa to visit the UK, please do not hesitate to contact us for advice, send us an e-mail, or, alternatively, follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn or Facebook to stay up-to-date.
The information in this blog is for general information purposes only and does not purport to be comprehensive or to provide legal advice. Whilst every effort is made to ensure the information and law is current as of the date of publication it should be stressed that, due to the passage of time, this does not necessarily reflect the present legal position. Gherson accepts no responsibility for loss which may arise from accessing or reliance on information contained in this blog. For formal advice on the current law please don’t hesitate to contact Gherson. Legal advice is only provided pursuant to a written agreement, identified as such, and signed by the client and by or on behalf of Gherson.