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Marriage Visitor Visa UK

The UK Marriage Visitor Visa facilitates the giving notice of a marriage or civil partnership and the enacting of it in the country for those who don’t intend to stay or settle after the ceremony.

If you’d like to tie the knot in the UK and are unsure of how or if you meet the various eligibility criteria, Manchester Immigration Lawyers can help. Call our team today on 0161 826 9783 to discuss your circumstances.

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    Marry in the UK with a Marriage Visitor Visa

    The UK Marriage Visitor Visa is designed for couples who are entering the country to give notice of marriage, get married or register a civil partnership. This travel permission covers the couple getting wed but not any guests – they will need to apply for a British Standard Visitor Visa if they don’t have the right to enter the UK permission-free.

    Destination weddings in the UK are popular but cannot be enacted without the proper visa permission, as to give notice, get married or register a civil partnership is a legal process which will be overseen and audited by a qualified registrar at a venue licensed for such practice.

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    What you can and cannot do with the Marriage Visitor Visa

    The Marriage Visitor Visa is a specific travel permission for the set purposes to enact a marriage or civil partnership in the UK. It does, therefore, hold several restrictions on what visa holders may and may not do while in the country.

    A Marriage Visitor Visa holder may:

    • Give notice of marriage or civil partnership
    • Get married or register a civil partnership at a venue licensed for this purpose (within 6 months of entry to the country).

    A Marriage Visitor Visa holder may not:

    • Claim any public funds or state benefits
    • Bring any family members or dependents with them under this visa type – they must apply for a separate Standard Visitor Visa as required
    • Live in the UK for extended periods through successive visits or frequent visits
    • Extend the visa or switch to another visa class
    • Work – aside from any ‘permitted paid engagements’ related to their existing work overseas
    • Study.

    How long you can stay in UK with Marriage Visa

    A Marriage Visitor Visa is valid for a total period of six months, with no ability to extend. Legally, to get married in the UK, notice of marriage must be given a minimum of 28 days before the booked ceremony date. This allows for auditing checks to be carried out as well as to facilitate a fair time period for any appeals.

    Emergency notice of marriage may be given in certain circumstances. For more information, contact Manchester Immigration Lawyers’ specialist solicitors on 0161 826 9783 to learn more.

    Requirements for a Marriage Visit Visa

    There are set eligibility requirements that must be met by applicants in order to receive a Marriage Visitor Visa. These are as follows:

    • Both parties in the couple must be aged 18 or over – there is no legal recourse for any foreign nationals aged under 18 to enter a marriage or civil partnership in the UK
    • Both parties in the couple must be free to give notice, to marry or enter into a civil partnership
    • Both parties must be in a genuine relationship
    • Both parties must be visiting the UK for a period of no more than six months
    • Neither party will use the UK as a de facto home through frequent visits or successive visits
    • Both parties must have sufficient financial means to support themselves during the trip and to pay for their return or onward journey.

    If the couple are looking to convert their civil partnership into a marriage, have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme (or have applied for either), or are Irish citizens, they do not need to apply for a Marriage Visitor Visa.

    • Eligibility is demonstrated through the presentation of supporting documentation. For a Marriage Visitor Visa, the following documents are required:
    • A valid passport for each party; with at least one blank page for the visa to be entered onto
    • Details of the marriage or civil partnership ceremony, as well as proof that at least some money (often a deposit) has been paid toward it
    • Booking confirmations for the ceremony and correspondence between relevant parties
    • (If either party has been married before) Either a decree absolute demonstrating the dissolution of the previous union or a death certificate of the previous partner.

    All documents must be presented in English or Welsh and so if the originals are in any language a certified translation must be provided.

    UK Marriage Visitor Visa Cost and Processing Time

    A Marriage Visitor Visa costs £115 application fee per party. Upon the cleared payment of this the visa application will be processed. Applicants may also experience indirect administration costs during the process.

    It takes no longer than three weeks to receive a decision on a UK Marriage Visitor Visa, but applicants can pay for an expedited service in some circumstances. Depending on availability, this may incur up to a further £1,000 fee.

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      Apply for a Marriage Visitor Visa: step by step

      The process to apply for a Marriage Visitor Visa is as follows:

      Confirm/book wedding or civil partnership venue

      Applicants for a Marriage Visitor Visa must already have their ceremony booked and be able to demonstrate some financial investment into it. This should be done ahead of the Marriage Visitor Visa application in order to demonstrate eligibility.

      Collate evidential documentation

      Applicants must be able to provide their identification documents and details on their marriage as well as the dissolution of any previous unions. Any documents not provided in English or Welsh must be accompanied by a certified translation.

      Apply online

      The Marriage Visitor Visa application form is completed online through the GOV.UK website.

      Pay Marriage Visitor Visa application fee

      The Marriage Visitor Visa application fee should be paid once the online application form has been completed. Upon payment of this fee, the application will be processed.

      Attend Visa Application Centre

      Once the Marriage Visitor Visa application fee has been paid and the form submitted, the applicant must book an appointment at their local Visa Application Centre to provide a photograph and fingerprints for biometric data purposes.

      Await Visa Outcome Decision

      The outcome on a Marriage Visitor Visa is usually made within three weeks, with applicants being informed in writing.

      Travel to the UK

      Once the visa has been granted, Marriage Visitor Visa holders are free to travel to the UK for their ceremony.

      Manchester Immigration Lawyers can provide support at any step through the Marriage Visitor Visa application process. Call us today on 0161 826 9783 for guidance.

      How our Manchester Immigration Lawyers can help

      Getting married or entering into a civil partnership is an exciting time and those who have to apply for a visa to do so in the UK shouldn’t allow the process to detract from this. Manchester Immigration Lawyers work daily with applicants from around the world to take the stress out of their visa applications and ensure they can successfully enter the UK to get wed. Get in touch with our expert team today on 0161 826 9783 to talk through how we can work to support you.

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                Frequently Asked Questions

                A marriage and civil partnership are both legal unions in British law that can be entered into by two unrelated people. A marriage is entered into with vows whereas a civil partnership is entered into through the signing of a civil partnership contract.

                Those with pre settled status or settled status through the EU Settlement Scheme do not need to apply for a Marriage Visitor Visa.

                There is no facility to include family members on a Marriage Visitor Visa. Instead, they must obtain their own Standard Visitor Visa if they will be attending the UK with you.