Joining your loved one in the UK. Image: Canva

Joining your loved one in the UK

Breytenbachs Immigration Consultants receive many questions from readers who would like to know how they can join their loved ones in the UK.


Joining your loved one in the UK. Image: Canva

Others have questions on whether they will be able to work or start their own business whilst in the UK as a partner. Breytenbachs have compiled some answers to some of the most frequently asked questions on the intricacies of the Spousal and Unmarried Partner routes for the UK.  

Working in the UK on a Settlement or Unmarried Partner Visa 

Can I work on a Spousal/Unmarried Partner Visa in the UK? Or do I need sponsorship to work?

The good news is that you can indeed work in the UK. You can work without restrictions and be self-employed on a Spousal/Unmarried Partner Visa. You don’t have to be sponsored by a company. 

Proving my Relationship 

Do I only need to submit a marriage certificate/proof of co-habitation for 24 months, proving my relationship to the British Passport holder?

No, you will also have to submit evidence proving that the relationship is genuine and subsisting. Your Breytenbachs consultant will be able to advise further. 

Can I submit a joint lease agreement or affidavits supporting the ‘proof of 24 months’ co-habitation requirement when I apply for an Unmarried Partner Visa?

No, the UKVI will not accept joint lease agreements or affidavits in support of this requirement. Anybody can download a lease agreement from the internet, and information contained in affidavits is not necessarily true and correct. The UKVI requires evidence in the form of bills/invoices/statements covering each one of the past 24 months, reflecting the names and address of the applicant and British Passport holder.

Marriage Periods for Visa Application 

If I get married to a British Passport holder, is there a specific period we need to be married for before I can apply for my Spousal Visa?

There is no specific period that you must be married for. However, you have to prove that you have been in a genuine and subsisting relationship before the marriage.

British Passport Holder Claiming Benefits 

If my spouse/partner, the British passport holder, is claiming certain benefits like Personal Independence Payments in the UK, am I exempt from meeting the financial requirements?

In such a case, you do not have to meet the strict financial requirements, i.e. GBP 18 600.00 in the passport holders’ income, coupled with a UK job offer or GBP 62 500.00 in cash savings. However, you still need to prove that you can adequately maintain and accommodate yourself, either through a job offer or cash savings. Adequate maintenance and accommodation are where the projected weekly income (“A”), either through employment or cash savings, less weekly accommodation costs (“B”), would be equal to, or more than, the amount the family would be entitled to if they were in receipt of income support benefits in the UK. Your Breytenbachs consultant will be able to advise further. 

Death of the British Spouse 

My spouse, a British Passport holder, passed away after I received my Spousal Visa. I am still in the UK. Do I need to leave the UK?

You will be able to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain or Settlement as a Bereaved Partner. You will have to show that you were living together in the UK and intended to continue living together permanently in the UK. Please speak to your Breytenbachs consultant for further assistance. 

How Breytenbachs can help you 

If you are interested in finding out more about the UK Settlement Visa or Unmarried Partner Visa, please do not hesitate to contact our team. Breytenbachs have a team of immigration consultants dealing specifically with UK Family Routes. They will be able to guide you through the process. 

Contact us today to arrange a consultation at or visit 

You can also phone your nearest Breytenbachs on the following numbers: Durban – 031 880 2777, Cape Town – 021 879 0969 or Pretoria – 012 460 9959, or our London office at +44 207 442 2160.

Please note that the information in this article does not constitute professional advice. It is provided for general information purposes without any warranty, either expressed or implied. 

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