Getting married internationally has never been easier, but it still comes with a series of bureaucratic and administrative hurdles that could cause problems in the process. If you are a foreigner who needs to marry a citizen of the country where you live or plan to live, you have to follow a series of rules. Also, if you want to marry a foreigner in your home country, you have other prerequisites, which are often regulated by law.
If we take the UK as an example, you will see that there you have different categories of visas for this purpose, from a fiancee visa to a marriage visa, in order to provide you with unhindered access to documentation and a residence permit as a married foreigner.
If you need a marriage UK visa you should know some of the following conditions:
1. You are a UK citizen and your partner is not or vice versa
To exercise the right to marry a non-UK resident, you need to apply for a visa for this purpose. This also applies to any legally recognized civil partnership.
A visa is required for anyone who is not British or Irish, or if you have a limited residence permit in the UK.
The same applies if you do not have pre-settled status according to the EU Settlement Scheme or if you tried to get it after June 20, 2023.
You need the visa to prove that the foreign partner intends to stay in the UK even after the civil marriage is officially concluded.
Accordingly, you can apply for a marriage visitor visa, family visa, or family permit. All these visas have different purposes, so you should inform yourself in time what they mean before you submit your application.
2. What to do if you do not have a visa at the moment
Even if you are only on a certain tourist stay, you can still share your intention to marry with the immigration authorities at the Home Office.
In doing so, you will receive an interview where you will have to answer many questions related to your relationship. This is a common practice if you have a partner from another country, with whom you see whenever there are conditions for it, but now you want to start a union or marriage.
Moreover, this immigration department may not allow you to get married in the UK. Of course, there is a solution for that too, but we still hope that it will turn out the way you initially planned.
3. Types of marriage visas in the UK
We have previously mentioned several types of visas that you need to get married in the United Kingdom.
A marriage visitor visa is a program that allows newlyweds or one of them to enter the country and get married there. Of course, if they are not from a European country, they have to leave the country and then apply for a residence visa as a married couple. If one of the partners is a UK citizen and the other is not, then the foreigner should leave the country and apply for a spouse visa from his home country.
As you can see, the marriage visitor visa applies to those who come to the UK to get married.
On the other hand, the fiance/fiancee visa is different, but it is still preferable that at least one of the partners is a resident or has a permanent residence in the UK. Under other conditions, this visa is not valid.
You must know that these visas do not allow you to study and work in the UK, which means that for such purposes you have to apply under other conditions and programs.
4. Do you have wedding visa expenses in the UK?
Applying for a visa and corresponding documents is not free, nor is the issuance of the visa and the necessary residence permits. Depending on where you are at the moment, the costs can be up to 1500 British pounds, which is not exactly cheap knowing that you may be asked for additional things or be refused.
If you are on a low income, it may be even more difficult to obtain these documents, as immigration authorities are suspicious of arranged marriages of mutual benefit.
Sometimes it is easier for people to get married in a country that has fewer requirements to meet, so they apply for a family immigrant visa in the UK.
5. Be patient throughout the process
No matter where you are in the world, red tape and administrative staff can be slower than you ever thought. It is true for every part of the world because simply, that is how almost all administrative services work. If there is an increased volume of visa applications of any type, you can get an estimated answer time of several weeks to several months, depending on what your case is.
But if you have decided to go this route, we recommend that you really be patient and don’t give up, even if you are initially denied your visa. In fact, you can always find an easier way, which is in accordance with the laws. You just have to know where to actually start.
These are five things you need to know about getting married civilly in the UK, whether you’re a resident getting married to a foreigner or vice versa. The situation is not ideal, but it is not impossible to achieve your intention.
In fact, the whole trick is in timely information and transparency towards the immigration departments. That way, at any moment, you will receive accurate information about what you need and you will not make any mistakes that would cost you several more weeks of waiting.
Therefore, regardless of whether your partner is a foreigner or you are a foreigner who is to marry a UK resident, you must carefully follow all the laws, so as not to put yourself in a situation where you will be banned from staying in the country for a certain period or visa application to be rejected.