We recently received the wonderful news that our client (“the Applicant”) successfully managed to transfer her conditions of stay in the UK from a Tier 4 (General) student visa to a spouse visa. The Applicant is now able to remain in the UK with her ‘settled’ spouse beyond the validity of her student visa. Applying to transfer conditions of stay can be a confusing process to most Applicants, therefore instructing our specialist immigration team to handle each case and ensure all of the necessary documents are provided is extremely important to ensure the success of the application.
Case for Transfer Conditions of Stay: Switching from a Tier 4 Student Visa to a Spouse Visa
The Applicant was a national of Brazil who entered the UK in September 2018 on a Tier 4 (General) Student visa, in order to complete her Master’s degree. A couple of years earlier, the Applicant had been in the UK visiting her sister which is when she met her now-husband (“the Sponsor”), a non-EEA national who has indefinite leave to remain in the UK. The two initially stayed in contact with each other as friends, but once they got to know each other better they both realised their mutual feelings and began a long-distance relationship, visiting each other in the UK and Brazil as often as they could. Once the Applicant arrived in the UK on her student visa she moved in with the Sponsor and their relationship continued to develop, so much so that the Sponsor decided to propose to the Applicant on New Year’s Eve.
The Applicant and Sponsor got married in April 2019 and following a consultation with one of our expert solicitors, decided to instruct us to prepare the Applicant’s application to vary her leave as a Tier 4 student to a spouse. Whilst we were preparing the application, the Applicant and Sponsor were delighted to find out that they are expecting their first child together, which made it even more important to transfer the Applicant’s conditions of stay as she would be able to remain in the UK in order to continue her family life in the UK with her growing family.
After reviewing all of the Applicant’s supporting documents and completing our legal representations, we also completed the online form and uploaded the necessary supporting documents onto the Home Office commercial partner’s website. We booked an appointment for the Applicant to attend a visa application support centre in order to give her biometrics, and she paid an additional fee of £800 and used the 24-hour super priority service so received her positive decision the following day after giving her biometric information.
How can I Transfer Conditions of Stay?
It is possible to switch from one visa category to another from within the UK in certain circumstances. This is sometimes referred to as transferring conditions of stay. This allows Applicants to apply for a visa in a different visa category, before the expiration of their current visa (i.e. halfway through Tier 2 employment migrants can switch to a spouse visa, they do not need to wait until the Tier 2 visa has ended).
In order to apply to transfer your conditions of stay, Applicants must make an online application for further leave to remain for their applicable visa route. It is crucial to ensure all of the necessary supporting documents are provided to demonstrate that the applicable immigration rules are satisfied.
Which visa routes allow you to switch visa route from within the UK?
Whilst it is not possible to apply transfer conditions of stay from all UK visa routes, many do allow you to switch from one visa category to another and we list a few of the popular ones below: As you will see from the list below, most visas allow switching from a points-based system visa to a spouse visa.
- Tier 4 student visa to Tier 2 work visa;
- Tier 4 student visa to spouse visa;
- Tier 4 student visa to Appendix W Start-up visa;
- Tier 2 work visa to spouse visa
- Tier 5 YMS visa to spouse visa.
You can also apply to vary your leave from within the same visa category. For example, it is possible to vary your leave from a spouse visa 10-year settlement route to spouse visa 5-year settlement route. This can only be done if all of the requirements for the spouse visa are satisfied.
Using Legal Representation to Transfer Conditions of Stay
Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on the law and your immigration matter. You can instruct one of our immigration and visa legal representatives to successfully assist you with applying to transfer conditions of stay. Our solicitors and Barristers will help you comply with the Home Office’s requirements and meet the Immigration Rules.
Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject visa applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your Immigration & Visa application succeeds, our solicitors and barristers will ensure all specified documents must be provided.
The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.
Successfully Switch Visa Categories from within the UK
Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your prospects of transferring your conditions of stay, before your application even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation and submission of a UK Visa application and are able to advise you in respect of your prospects and to ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.
Our offices are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients. We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.
Preparation is the key to successful immigration applications. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation to discuss switching from a Student Visa to a Spouse Visa.
Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.