Can my Husband Cancel my Spouse Visa?
The question ‘can my husband cancel my spouse visa?’ is one that the Immigration and family law solicitors get asked a lot in January when there is a rise in separation and divorce enquiries. January can be a miserable time of the year with the weather and post festive holiday blues, but it is much worse if you are going through a separation and are worried about losing your home and having to leave the UK. In this blog we answer your questions about whether your husband (or wife or civil partner) can cancel your spouse visa.
spouse visa solicitors
London based OTS Solicitors are experts in Immigration law and specialise in Spouse Visas. Our solicitors can talk to you about how your separation or divorce could affect your spouse visa and discuss your best Immigration options. For fast, friendly advice from UK spouse visa solicitors call OTS Solicitors on 0203 959 9123 or compete our online enquiry form.
Cancelling a spouse visa
A spouse visa is granted by the Home Office because of your relationship with your husband, spouse, or partner and gives you permission to stay in the UK for a specified period of time. Your separation or divorce is classed as a ‘change of circumstances’ that enables the Home Office to decide whether or not to curtail or cancel your spouse visa.
Cancelling or curtailment of a spouse visa
Cancelling a spouse visa is also referred to as the ‘curtailment’ of your visa. Cancellation or curtailment has the same effect on your spouse visa. However, if the Home Office contact you, they are likely to refer to visa ‘curtailment’ in any official correspondence whilst family, friends and Immigration solicitors will probably talk about cancellation as the word is a bit more understandable.
Can my husband cancel my spouse visa?
The quick answer is that your husband can't cancel your spouse visa. That is because your spouse visa was issued by the Home Office and not by your husband or spouse. Therefore, only the Home Office has the power and authority to cancel your spouse visa or to make you leave the UK.
If you feel threatened or controlled you can take family law advice on your best options, including separation or starting divorce or injunction proceedings to safeguard yourself. Immigration and family law solicitors will tell you that, whatever your Immigration status, the UK law on domestic abuse can protect you with an occupation or non-molestation injunction order.
Can the Home Office cancel my spouse visa?
Although your husband or spouse can't cancel your spouse visa, the Home Office does have the power to do so. That’s why, if you are in the UK on a spouse visa, and you are thinking about separating or getting divorced, it is very important to take Immigration and family law advice before you take any steps. A family and Immigration solicitor won't pressure you to change your mind but they will want to advise you on the best way to go about a separation or divorce and stay in the UK, assuming that you want to be able to stay in the UK after your separation from your husband.
Telling the Home Office about your separation
If you have decided to separate from your husband, or he has told you that the marriage is over, then probably what won't be a big priority for you is talking to a Home Office official about your family circumstances. However, it is really important that you or your spouse visa solicitor contacts the Home Office to let them know about your separation.
If your separation from your husband isn’t amicable then you risk him contacting the Home Office before you do so. That isn’t a good idea as it may affect your Immigration record, so it is best to take quick legal advice from spouse visa experts and then contact the Home Office direct or via your solicitor.
Any correspondence with the Home Office needs to include your Home Office reference number as well as your passport number and personal information as well as details about your spouse and any dependent children. You can tell the Home Office whether or not you agree to them disclosing the information you provided to them to your husband or not.
Cancelling a spouse visa – what are my visa options?
The Home Office has the power to cancel your spouse visa and you then either need to apply for a new visa or leave the UK.
The Home Office normally tell you that your spouse visa has been ‘curtailed’ by sending you a curtailment letter. You don’t normally have to leave the UK straight away if your spouse visa is cancelled and it is usual to be given sixty days within which to leave the UK or apply for a new visa.
Can I appeal the cancellation of my spouse visa?
If the Home Office cancels your spouse visa then you don’t have a right of appeal against the decision but you can:
• Ask for a reconsideration – you can take this step if you think the Home Office decision is wrong (for example because you haven’t separated) or if you need more than sixty days (for good reasons) to leave the UK
• Start Judicial Reviews proceedings - to challenge the Home Office decision
• Leave the UK – if you decide to leave the UK then you should do so within the sixty days so you are not classed as an ‘overstayer’. If you are classed as an overstayer this may affect your ability in future to secure another visa or UK entry clearance. If you want to live in the UK but haven’t made a visa application it is better to leave the UK and make your application from overseas rather than have your new visa application rejected because of your Immigration classification as an ‘overstayer’
• Apply for a different type of visa – if you are successful in applying for a different type of visa then, depending on the type of visa this could lead to your being able to settle in the UK.
Cancelling a spouse visa and alternative visa options
• Domestic violence in relationship and applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain - if your husband is a British citizen or has Settled Status and there was domestic violence in your relationship resulting in the breakdown of your marriage you could be eligible to apply for indefinite leave to remain
• Parent route -If you have children with your husband you may be eligible to apply for settlement because of your children
• Apply for a Tier 2 (General) visa – if you can find Employment with an employer who can sponsor your Employment then you can potentially apply for a work visa, known as a tier 2 (General) visa.
If you are in the UK on a spouse visa and you are experiencing relationship difficulties then the essential thing is to take legal advice from spouse visa and family law experts. They can look at your family situation from both a family law and Immigration law perspective and advise you on your best options if you want to remain in the UK after the cancellation of your spouse visa.