Mon | Mar 27, 2017

My boyfriend can't stay long

Published:Tuesday | September 16, 2014 | 9:00 AM
John Bassie

Dear Mr Bassie,

My boyfriend would like me to marry him and live with him in the United Kingdom. The problem is that his status makes it clear that he has limited leave to remain there. Would I be able to stay there with him given his current status?

- LW

Dear LW,

There are specific requirements for a person who is seeking leave to enter or remain as the spouse or civil partner of a person with limited leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom.

These requirements that need to be met by a person who is seeking leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom as the spouse or civil partner of a person with limited leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom include that the applicant is married or the civil partner of a person with limited leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom and each of the parties intends to live with the other as his or her spouse or civil partner during the applicant's stay and the marriage or civil partnership is subsisting.

adequate accommodation

It has to be shown that there will be adequate accommodation for the parties and any dependents without recourse to public funds for accommodation and that they own or occupy the accommodation exclusively. The parties must show that they will be able to maintain themselves and any dependents adequately without recourse to public funds; and that he or she does not intend to stay in the United Kingdom beyond any period of leave granted to his/her spouse.

In seeking leave to enter, the applicant must hold a valid United Kingdom entry clearance specifically for entry in this capacity or, if he/she is seeking leave to remain, was admitted with a valid United Kingdom entry clearance for entry in this capacity; or if the applicant is seeking leave to remain, he/she must not be in the United Kingdom in breach of immigration laws except that any period of overstaying for a period of 28 days or less will be disregarded.

Also, any person seeking leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom as the spouse of a person with limited leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom may be given leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom for a period of leave not in excess of that granted to the person with limited leave to enter or remain. This is provided that, in relation to an application for leave to enter, he/she is able, on arrival, to produce to the immigration officer a valid United Kingdom entry clearance for entry in this capacity or, in the case of an application for limited leave to remain, was admitted with a valid United Kingdom entry clearance for entry in this capacity and he is able to satisfy the Secretary of State that each of the requirements previously are met.

It should be noted that leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom as the spouse of a person with limited leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom may be refused if, in relation to an application for leave to enter, a valid United Kingdom entry clearance for entry in this capacity is not produced to the immigration officer on arrival. It may also be refused in the case of an application for limited leave to remain, if the applicant was not admitted with a valid United Kingdom entry clearance for entry in this capacity and/or is unable to satisfy the Secretary of State that each of the requirements mentioned above were met.

I hope this helps.

John S. Bassie is a barrister/attorney-at-law who practises law in Jamaica. He is a justice of the peace, a Supreme Court-appointed mediator, a fellow of the Chartered Institute of Arbitrators, a chartered arbitrator; and a member of the Immigration Law Practitioners Association (UK). Email:lawbassie@yahoo.com