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What are the financial requirement for UK spouse visa – updated 2022

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Our UK visa experts have received many queries online with the search term, ‘marriage visa financial requirement‘ or ‘financial requirement for a UK Spouse visa application’. If you’re applying as a couple, your sponsor must earn at least £18,600 annually, or the sponsor and applicant if the applicant is in the UK with permission to work.

As per the Immigration Rules’ Appendix FM lists, the minimal financial standards must be met for entry clearance or permission to remain. This article’s focus is on the financial requirement for UK spouse visa.

Among the various documentation and language requirements for UK spouse visa 2022, meeting the financial requirement for UK Spouse visa is one of the trickiest aspects of applying as a spouse or partner.

Here’s a UK Spouse visa Application – Financial requirement Guide 2022 where our experts have created a UK Spouse visa Financial requirement checklist.

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Table of Content

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UK Spouse visa financial requirement checklist

If you are applying as a couple and wish to obtain “indefinite leave to remain” within five years in the UK, the sponsor must earn at least £18,600 annually. If the visa holder is permitted to work in the UK, then the couple’s income can be combined.

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Financial requirement for a UK Spouse visa application and how to prove it

When submitting your application, you must include income documentation. The following will help you understand how you can prove to meet the income requirement:

  • You and/or your partner must earn an annual salary of £18,600 or more
  • You must provide bank records demonstrating your or your partner’s earnings
  • You must provide 6 months’ worth of pay stubs plus a signed, date-stamped letter from the employer
  • The letter from the employer should attest:
    • You or your partner work there, what you or your partner do there, and how long you or your partner have worked there.
    • The kind of agreement (for example, permanent, fixed term)
    • Your or your spouse’s annual income before taxes and national insurance
    • How long have you or your spouse received your present pay?
  • The pay slips must be authentic.
  • When you apply online, you’ll be advised exactly which documents to provide.

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If bringing your children (non-nationals)

If you have kids who:

  • are not nationals of Ireland or Britain
  • have not yet been resolved
  • are not residing permanently in the UK

You might not need to show that you have extra funds to support them.

You will need additional funds to look after your children in the UK:

  • £3,800 – as an annual cost for your first child
  • £2,400 – for each additional child you have

This is the “minimum income requirement” part of the financial requirement for a UK Spouse visa application. You do not need to meet this criterion if your child is of British nationality.

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What counts as proof of financial subsistence and documents to prove financial subsistence for a UK Spouse visa?

Financial subsistence means you can sustain yourself – afford your accommodation, daily expenses, etc while in the UK.

Our team of UK immigration experts in Mumbai, Delhi & Bengaluru have received many queries about financial subsistence for the UK Spouse visa. It can help to understand the right requirements and know important tips to make a successful UK Spouse visa application.

Here, proof of financial subsistence means showing specified evidence to prove you can support yourself financially in the UK.

To prove this, you can provide the following:

  • Bank statements for the last 3 months (with the name and address of the applicant)
  • Cover Letter from the bank
  • Employment letter (you or your partner)
  • Payslips must be authentic
  • Savings must be accessible (this means you must be able to withdraw them whenever you want)
  • The documents must not be dated more than 28 days before the application is submitted.
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What is considered ‘income’?

  • Income from employment before tax and National Insurance (check your P60 or payslips) is what you and your partner can use.
  • You can only use your income if you earn it in the UK.
  • Income from self-employment or serving as a director of a limited company in the UK is reported on your Self Assessment tax return.
  • Cash savings above £16,000 (not income) and pension income are examples of non-work income.
  • Income received from dividends, rent, etc.

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Proof of your income

To meet the financial requirement for a UK Spouse visa application, you will have to provide proof of your income.

  • Letter from the employer
  • Six consecutive months of employment are required before the application,
  • Evidence of self-employment must be of the most recent financial year
  • The Sponsor’s (or Applicant’s) bank account must have held the excess savings for a minimum of 6 months.

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What if you/your partner earn less than £18,600?

The necessary income and/or savings can be proven in many ways. Income from different sources can be combined in some circumstances, but not in others.

This is for those whose sponsors don’t make £18,600 a year or someone who recently started a new job, or who might otherwise be having trouble meeting the criteria.

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Here are the different ways you can meet the financial requirements:

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Category A

  • When the sponsor (and/or the applicant, if they are in the UK with authorisation to work), has worked for the same employer for at least six months, income can be included in this category. The sponsor may work for a salary or without one.
  • Non-salaried employment is defined as work that is paid on an hourly basis or at another rate (with the number and/or pattern of hours required to be worked being flexible).
  • The sponsor’s pay for the preceding six months, if they have a salaried position, must be equal to or more than the required minimum income.
  • When the sponsor is in non-salaried employment, they will have to calculate the annual equivalent of their average gross monthly income from non-salaried employment in the six months before the date of application. This means that they have to add up their actual gross income received in the last six months, divide by six to obtain a monthly average, and multiply by 12, to get the annual average.
  • If the total income is below the required threshold, it is possible to combine it with Category C, D and E (non-employment income, cash savings and pension), which we will look at below, to meet the requirement.

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Category A – Sponsor returning to the UK with the applicant

  • It is a different situation for sponsors who have not been living in the UK.
  • They must have spent the previous 6 months working for the same employer, however in this case, it will be an employer abroad.
  • In addition, they must have a job offer for salaried or non-salaried work in the UK with start date no later than three months after their return and an income of at least the minimum.

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Category B – Sponsor in the UK

  • Sponsors (and applicants, if they are lawfully employed in the UK), who have not been in the same salaried or non-salaried employment for at least six months before the application, or those with variable income, fall under this category.
  • Two distinct calculations are necessary for this category:
  • Gross annual salary or income at the time of application, as well as actual pay or income earned during the previous 12 months.
  • Both computations must reveal income that is more than the necessary minimum.
  • As a result, the sponsor must first determine their gross annual remuneration.
  • If they are employed on a salary basis, they must include their gross annual wage as of the application deadline.
  • If they work for an employer who does not pay a salary, they must add up all of their earnings from the time they started working there until the application deadline, divide that total by the number of months, and multiply that result by 12 (the calculation is different if they are paid weekly or daily).
  • It is possible to combine it with income or savings in Categories C, D, and E, as we will see later, if the total income is below the necessary threshold.
  • One party can’t rely on Category A while the other uses Category B since if the sponsor and applicant want to combine their income, they must only use Category B.
  • Second, in the 12 months before the application, the applicant and/or sponsor must determine their actual income (from salaried or non-salaried employment). To reach the threshold, revenue from categories C and E can be added, however income from categories D cannot (cash savings).

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Category B – Sponsor returning to the UK with the applicant

  • In this situation, the sponsor does not need to be employed, but rather must have a job offer with a gross annual starting salary (or, in the case of non-salaried employment, a gross annual income from that employment) equal to or above the necessary threshold, beginning within three months of their return. By using Category C, D, or E, the revenue may be ‘topped up’.
  • The sponsor must have received a gross amount of salary or non-salary employment income from abroad in the 12 months before the application that is equal to or more than the minimum threshold. Category C or E may be used to supplement this income, but not Category D. (cash savings).

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Category C – Non-employment income

You can rely on the following sources of funding to show that the minimum income criteria are met:

  • Property leasing
  • Dividends or other income from securities such as bonds, trust funds, or stocks and shares
  • Invested interest
  • Maintenance payments from the applicant’s previous spouse for the applicant or any kids the applicant and their ex-partner have together. Maintenance payments from the applicant’s partner’s former spouse regarding that spouse (You will also be required to show documentation related to the previous marriage – marriage certificate, documentation to show you are legally not married anymore)
  • UK Widowed Parent’s Allowance, Maternity Allowance, Bereavement Allowance, and Bereavement Payment
  • Payments made under the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme, the Armed Forces Attributable Benefits Scheme, and the War Pensions Scheme
  • A maintenance stipend or grant (not a loan) related to research, postgraduate studies, or undergraduate education
  • On-going premiums for insurance
  • On-going payments from royalty

Income received from any of the above sources must be dated within 12 months from the date of the application.

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Category D – Cash savings

  • Cash savings of only up to £16,000 will be considered.