If you have recently lost your partner and your visa remains dependant on your relationship with them, it is incredibly important not to forget to address your immigration status, even though this may be the last thing on your mind at such a difficult time.
This blog looks into the available visa route for bereaved partners who are yet to settle in the UK and the recent changes that have come into force.
In order to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK as a Bereaved Partner, you must have been or were last granted permission as a partner on one of the specified routes, and this partner has now died. You must also be in the UK (unless you were last granted permission as a partner under Appendix Armed Forces). The specified routes will include:
- A partner (spouse, civil partner or unmarried partner) of a person who is a British citizen settled in the UK, or an EEA national in the UK with pre-settled status in the UK; or a person present and settled in the UK – this will not include a fiancé(e) or proposed civil partner visa;
- A partner of a person present and settled in the UK under Part 8 (partner of a person present and settled in the UK);
- A Bereaved Partner under Appendix FM; and
- A partner, under Appendix Armed Forces, of a person who is a British citizen, or a foreign and commonwealth citizen who was serving member of HM Forces, or a member of HM Armed Forces who has applied for or been granted permission or settlement as a foreign and commonwealth citizen discharged from HM Forces.
To be eligible to apply for this visa, you will need to meet:
- The relationship requirement:
- Your partner, who was the sponsor for your last grant of leave, must have died; and
- Your relationship with your partner must have been genuine and subsisting immediately prior to their death.
- English language requirement:
- You must be able to meet the English language requirement, either by completing a Secure English Language test approved by the Home Office, by holding a nationality of a majority speaking English language, or by holding a degree that was either taught in English or a qualification at Level B1 or above.
- As you will need to have leave as a partner in the UK at the time of this application, you should have already met this requirement and will be able to resubmit the same evidence with this application.
- Knowledge of Life in the UK
- You must pass the knowledge of the life in the UK test.
Dependent children are permitted to apply either with the surviving parent’s application or can submit an application separately.
With the changes that will come into force on 31 January 2024, your application for settlement under this route must now be made under Appendix Bereaved Partner. If your application is approved, you will be granted indefinite leave to enter/remain in the UK as applicable.
How Gherson can assist
Gherson’s Immigration Team are highly experienced in advising on UK visa matters. If you have any questions arising from this blog, please do not hesitate to contact us for advice, send us an e-mail, or, alternatively, follow us on X, Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn 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 do not 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.