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Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Old Sep 30th 2011, 5:48 pm
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Default Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Hello everyone!

My partner (British, 26 years old) and I (Canadian, 25 years old) are considering moving to the UK next year--probably in the first half of 2012. I've spoken to UKBA and had it confirmed that I can enter the UK via the Youth Mobility Scheme in early 2012 (which allows me to start working right away) and then change status to Unmarried Partner when we are eligible in June 2012 (which is when we'll have been cohabiting for the required 24 months).

Question 1: Has anyone else done this (that is, transferred status from YMS to Unmarried Partner or Spouse)? Anything I should know/plan for? We are, of course, in the ongoing process of gathering documentation to prove our relationship (joint leases, credit cards, bank accounts, beneficiary status, etc.).

Also, I've heard rumours (from where, I cannot remember) that the conditions of the Spouse/Unmarried Partner visa may be changing in 2012--e.g., that the current 2-year probation period before the foreign partner may apply for indefinite leave to remain may be extended to 3 or more years.

Question 2: Has anyone heard anything about this rumour? The only evidence of immigration changes I've found for 2012 relate to the abolition of the Post-Study Work Visa, which doesn't apply to my situation. Does anyone know of discussions about changes in legislation about the partner visas?

Thank you in advance for your help!
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Old Sep 30th 2011, 7:14 pm
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Originally Posted by Aperture View Post
Hello everyone!

Also, I've heard rumours (from where, I cannot remember) that the conditions of the Spouse/Unmarried Partner visa may be changing in 2012--e.g., that the current 2-year probation period before the foreign partner may apply for indefinite leave to remain may be extended to 3 or more years.

Question 2: Has anyone heard anything about this rumour? The only evidence of immigration changes I've found for 2012 relate to the abolition of the Post-Study Work Visa, which doesn't apply to my situation. Does anyone know of discussions about changes in legislation about the partner visas?

Thank you in advance for your help!
Aperture, they are not rumours. The consultation is about to end and they are planning on implementing the new rules by April 2012. The probationary period will be 5 years before being eligible for ILR. It needs to be approved by Parliament but it is unlikely it will not pass.
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Old Sep 30th 2011, 7:19 pm
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Originally Posted by Mecano View Post
Aperture, they are not rumours. The consultation is about to end and they are planning on implementing the new rules by April 2012. The probationary period will be 5 years before being eligible for ILR. It needs to be approved by Parliament but it is unlikely it will not pass.
Ack, not what I wanted to hear! Still, thank you for posting. Could you link me to a news report/government page confirming/discussing this?

(Worst case scenario, I suppose we can always rush to get legally married in March 2012. I'd rather do common-law, but I'd also rather not have to wait five whole years before getting ILR.)
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Old Sep 30th 2011, 7:22 pm
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Originally Posted by Aperture View Post
Ack, not what I wanted to hear! Still, thank you for posting. Could you link me to a news report/government page confirming/discussing this?

(Worst case scenario, I suppose we can always rush to get legally married in March 2012. I'd rather do common-law, but I'd also rather not have to wait five whole years before getting ILR.)
If you send me your email address through a private message I can email you the entire consultation paper on pdf

Or you'll find it at http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/po.../consultations Under Family Migration

Last edited by Mecano; Sep 30th 2011 at 7:31 pm.
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Old Sep 30th 2011, 7:31 pm
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Originally Posted by Mecano View Post
If you send me your email address through a private message I can email you the entire consultation paper on pdf
I just found it a news post discussing it:
http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/si...family-consult

What's strange is that I see no evidence of it on the Home Office Consultations page:
http://www.homeoffice.gov.uk/about-us/consultations/

I really appreciate your offer, Mecano, but prefer not to give out my e-mail address. Is there any way you can show me where to find it on the Home Office website?

Last edited by Aperture; Sep 30th 2011 at 7:34 pm.
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Old Sep 30th 2011, 7:34 pm
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Oh, I think I just found it!

http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/si...df?view=Binary

Is that the one?
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Old Sep 30th 2011, 8:28 pm
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Originally Posted by Aperture View Post
Oh, I think I just found it!

http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/si...df?view=Binary

Is that the one?
That's the one
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Old Sep 30th 2011, 8:28 pm
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Originally Posted by Aperture View Post
Oh, I think I just found it!

http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/si...df?view=Binary

Is that the one?
That's the one
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Old Oct 1st 2011, 3:48 am
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Originally Posted by Mecano View Post
Aperture, they are not rumours. The consultation is about to end and they are planning on implementing the new rules by April 2012. The probationary period will be 5 years before being eligible for ILR. It needs to be approved by Parliament but it is unlikely it will not pass.
How did you come up with April 2012 as being the month when these changes will be implemented?

The rules particularly seem harsh for couples who has been married for over 4 years (like in my and my wife's case). Basically this new rule implies that anyone who wants to gain permanent residence on spouse marriage, especially 4 years or more, does not have much time to move there otherwise they will be placed in same category of 'treatment' as someone who has been married for less than 4 years.

It would be helpful to know what happens to an applicant who move there in March 2012, for example, and would then they be treated with the new rules or the current rules.
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Old Oct 1st 2011, 4:50 am
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Originally Posted by manny1980 View Post
How did you come up with April 2012 as being the month when these changes will be implemented?

The rules particularly seem harsh for couples who has been married for over 4 years (like in my and my wife's case). Basically this new rule implies that anyone who wants to gain permanent residence on spouse marriage, especially 4 years or more, does not have much time to move there otherwise they will be placed in same category of 'treatment' as someone who has been married for less than 4 years.

It would be helpful to know what happens to an applicant who move there in March 2012, for example, and would then they be treated with the new rules or the current rules.
The date is mentioned on page 4 of the consultation paper (http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/si...?view=Binary): "We will then be looking to implement changes to the Immigration Rules in April 2012."

And, yeah, it sucks. Basically, if this passes, my partner and I are going to run to the nearest registry office for a quick and basic marriage ceremony, then get the visa processed (probably expedited), and move to the UK before April 2012. It's pretty terrible--I never before envisioned we'd be talking about a wedding as such a community-less, government-focused event (because of the timing and where we live, we wouldn't even get to have family or friends present)--but it's between that and doing things at our own pace (and then having to deal with a 5-year probation). We could be having kids before I'm ever granted indefinite leave to remain! Insane and quite upsetting.

Does anyone know when it will be voted on?
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Old Oct 1st 2011, 5:00 am
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Originally Posted by Aperture View Post
The date is mentioned on page 4 of the consultation paper (http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/si...?view=Binary): "We will then be looking to implement changes to the Immigration Rules in April 2012."

And, yeah, it sucks. Basically, if this passes, my partner and I are going to run to the nearest registry office for a quick and basic marriage ceremony, then get the visa processed (probably expedited), and move to the UK before April 2012. It's pretty terrible--I never before envisioned we'd be talking about a wedding as such a community-less, government-focused event (because of the timing and where we live, we wouldn't even get to have family or friends present)--but it's between that and doing things at our own pace (and then having to deal with a 5-year probation). We could be having kids before I'm ever granted indefinite leave to remain! Insane and quite upsetting.

Does anyone know when it will be voted on?
Thanks for your reply! The wordings in the pdf document as quoted "We will then be looking to implement changes to the Immigration Rules in April 2012." This, to me, is a little confusing as it can be understood as the Govt. looking to set a law on these changes in April 2012 but may not necessarily be put in action in April 2012...again I could and probably am wrong but I hope there is 2-3 months of delay which would give many people who want to move to the UK next month more space to prepare for these changes.

BTW, I assume you are not yet married to your partner, hence the two year rule probably will change to five year rule which will be applicable to you. I was talking about a couple who has been married for 4+ years, who in current rules would be able to apply for permanent residence without any waiting but with these new rules, every couple has to wait for 5 years before applying for permanent residence.
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Old Oct 1st 2011, 5:07 am
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Originally Posted by manny1980 View Post
Thanks for your reply! The wordings in the pdf document as quoted "We will then be looking to implement changes to the Immigration Rules in April 2012." This, to me, is a little confusing as it can be understood as the Govt. looking to set a law on these changes in April 2012 but may not necessarily be put in action in April 2012...again I could and probably am wrong but I hope there is 2-3 months of delay which would give many people who want to move to the UK next month more space to prepare for these changes.

BTW, I assume you are not yet married to your partner, hence the two year rule probably will change to five year rule which will be applicable to you. I was talking about a couple who has been married for 4+ years, who in current rules would be able to apply for permanent residence without any waiting but with these new rules, every couple has to wait for 5 years before applying for permanent residence.
Yes, it would be very helpful to know when the rules would be put in place. I assumed the phrasing meant the new rules would be valid from April 2012, but I would be downright gleeful to find out that they wouldn't be enacted until, say, 2013 (well, ideally never!). I have no idea how to find out--I may call the UK Parliament public information service next week to find out how these things usually work.

Indeed, we were originally planning to move to the UK using a Youth Mobility Scheme (for me) until we were eligible for the Unmarried Partner visa in June 2012 (which marks the necessary 24 months cohabitation date for us). With no changes in law, I'd still be subject to a 2 year probation period, but that's certainly preferable to five years!

You're right, though--it's extra unfair for long-term married couples (like you and your spouse) who would previously get immediate indefinite leave to remain and who would, under the new rules, get stuck with a five year probation period.

I plan to submit a letter as part of the consultation process to voice my complaints. Who knows if it'll be heard by the right people, but I feel the need to stand up on behalf of legitimate couples who will be hurt by the changes. I hope you'll consider doing the same thing.
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Old Oct 1st 2011, 6:00 am
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

Originally Posted by Aperture View Post
Yes, it would be very helpful to know when the rules would be put in place. I assumed the phrasing meant the new rules would be valid from April 2012, but I would be downright gleeful to find out that they wouldn't be enacted until, say, 2013 (well, ideally never!). I have no idea how to find out--I may call the UK Parliament public information service next week to find out how these things usually work.

Indeed, we were originally planning to move to the UK using a Youth Mobility Scheme (for me) until we were eligible for the Unmarried Partner visa in June 2012 (which marks the necessary 24 months cohabitation date for us). With no changes in law, I'd still be subject to a 2 year probation period, but that's certainly preferable to five years!

You're right, though--it's extra unfair for long-term married couples (like you and your spouse) who would previously get immediate indefinite leave to remain and who would, under the new rules, get stuck with a five year probation period.

I plan to submit a letter as part of the consultation process to voice my complaints. Who knows if it'll be heard by the right people, but I feel the need to stand up on behalf of legitimate couples who will be hurt by the changes. I hope you'll consider doing the same thing.
Actually you gave me an idea for myself and my spouse (thanks ). I guess if we do apply for entrance clearance visa before April 2012, then I assume we will still be eligible for the current rules and not the one that will be placed in April 2012. But it may help us by not having to wait for 5 years but only 2 years even though my wife would be eligible for ILR (Indefinite Leave to Remain) immediately.

That's a good idea of submitting a letter of complain as these strict measures are been put in place to prevent immigration abuse by many immigrants but unfortunately in doing so good and genuine immigrants get caught up in such harsh changes. Sadly I have also heard of flood of immigration in the UK from Eastern European countries who can freely move in the UK without much problems.
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Old Oct 1st 2011, 9:54 am
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

do make your comments known via the consultation documents.
I think it is appalling that they are also plan not to recognise long term marriages outside the UK.
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Old Oct 4th 2011, 4:01 am
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Default Re: Immigration changes (rumours?) and status transfer question

For the record (for those who are following this thread), we called both the UK Parliament and the UK Home Office today. The former directed us to the latter, who said they cannot comment at all on the consultation or offer any sort of timeline about legislation until legislation has actually passed/be enacted. Not very helpful for those of us who are trying to plan their lives around this.

If anyone else wants to try giving the UK Home Office a call after 6th October, please post here if you get any helpful answers. (We will also be calling them, but one never knows who will answer the phone! The more people who call, the greater chance we may have at finding out if/when the legislation would be enacted.)
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