You need a family visa to live with a family member in the UK for more than 6 months.
Applying from outside the UK
You can apply for a family visa to live with your:
- spouse or partner
- fiancé, fiancée or proposed civil partner
- relative who’ll provide long-term care for you
If you’re visiting the UK for 6 months or less, check if you need a Standard Visitor visa or Marriage Visitor visa.
Extending your family visa
You can apply to extend your stay with your family member if you’re already in the UK on a family visa.
You can extend at any time before your current permission to stay in the UK expires.
If you’re extending to stay with the same family member, you’ll only get up to 28 days left on your current stay added to your new visa.
You must live in the UK for a certain amount of time before you’re eligible for settlement (‘indefinite leave to remain’) – check how much time you needbefore you extend your visa.
You might be able to apply to stay on the basis of your private life if you’ve lived in the UK for many years already.
Switching to a family visa
If you came to the UK on a different visa, you might be able to switch to a family visa to stay with your:
- spouse or partner
You can switch at any time before your current permission to stay in the UK expires.
If you do not meet the rules because of coronavirus (COVID-19)
If you do not meet the rules to enter or remain in the UK because of coronavirus, you might still be able to apply to extend your stay or switch to a family visa. Read the guidance for UK visa applicants and temporary UK residents.
How much it costs depends on how you apply.
|Apply outside the UK||Apply in the UK|
|Cost if joining your partner, parent or child||£1,523||£1,033|
|Cost for each dependant added to your application||£1,523 each person||£1,033 each person|
|Cost for an adult who needs to be looked after by a relative||£3,250||£1,033|
Let your bank know that a large amount of money will be coming out of your account – otherwise it might cancel your payment.
You might also need to pay the healthcare surcharge as part of your application.
If you’re applying to extend or switch in the UK
You’ll need to pay £19.20 to have your biometric information (fingerprints and a photo) taken.
Get a faster decision on your application
If you’re applying from the UK, you may be able to pay an extra £800 for the super priority service to get a faster decision.
You cannot use the super priority service if you’re applying as an adult coming to be cared for by a relative.
Once you’ve got your decision letter, your biometric residence permit will take up to 10 working days to arrive.
How long it takes
If you apply outside the UK a decision will usually be made within 12 weeks.
If you apply in the UK a decision will usually be made within 8 weeks of your application date if you use the standard service.
If you use the super priority service a decision will usually be made:
- by the end of the next working day after providing your biometric information if your appointment is on a weekday
- 2 working days after providing your biometric information if your appointment is at the weekend
Working days are Monday to Friday, not including bank holidays.
It might take longer if your application is complex, for example you:
- do not meet the minimum income requirement
- cannot prove your knowledge of English
- need to attend an interview
- have not provided all the evidence that the Home Office needs
- have a criminal conviction or another personal circumstance that needs to be reviewed