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Eea Family Permit - Advice Required

EEA Family Permit

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#1 laila90

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 02:04 PM

Hi all,

I have been reading the European Track section of this forum to gather some information about the EEA Family Permit before me and my to be wife apply for one. The following is our situation.

The Applicants
- EEA National: Currently a student at university and due to graduate in 2014. She also holds a permanent part-time job. She is currently regarded as an external student in the university for this academic year as there was an unfortunate family issue which led to exams being delayed. She moved to England in September 2010. She has held her job for more than a year now.

- Non EEA National: I first moved to England on September 2008 for University and graduated in 2012. During this time I made one successful visa extension application for my student visa. My student visa expired on 1st November 2012, and I duly left for my homeland just before it expired. I have only ever made two visa applications to the UKBA both were successful. I do not have any problematic immigration history.

Situation
We both first met in October 2010 at the university which we both attend. By December 2010 we were in a relationship and had been so since then. In the last few months we both decided to marry and had been planning to do so in the UK but in the process of arranging everything and getting our families involved I started approaching the end of my student visa. Soon after we realized that our preparations would not be complete within time so I had no other option but to leave the UK. But before doing so we decided that we will arrange for our marriage in Turkey and since then we have been working towards that.

Queries
Given our current situation we have the following questions in mind:

(1) We understand that one of the most important piece of evidence is for proving that our relationship is genuine. We intend to do this by attaching the following evidence:
- Marriage certificate that we will obtain in Turkey along with translation.
- A selection of pictures from our wedding.
- A selection of pictures from our time together in England.
- A print out of our Skype calls' details for the period that I have been away since after the expiry of my visa.
- Letters from both our parents and our close friends and relatives.

Would this be enough evidence for our case?

(2) I have read that an application which is filed straight after the wedding is considered suspicious. I'm afraid this could be the case with us, as after our wedding in Turkey my wife will need to return back to England in order to carry on with her employment. This would mean that we would not be able to live together immediately. Would this pose any problems?

(3) We can show that the Treaty Rights are being exercised through either employment or education, or is it better to show both?

(4) Do we need to show bank statements and payslips? Or is it enough just to hand in an official letter from the employer stating the nature of the contract and the working hours?

Thank you!



#2 Mutly

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 02:34 PM

1. Only an advisor who sees the documents can give a definite answer however with everything you've listed chances are good. Show the duration of the relationship too eg. in photo selections and letters. If you lived together at any stage and/or took any joint trips, include proof of that such as lease, bank statements with address, bills, holiday bookings, passport stamps etc.

2. If the entry clearance officers are happy with the proof of a genuine relationshiop then applying straight after marriage won't be a problem. It will be evident anyway that you left the UK because your visa expired and your wife needs to go back to work. You need to intend to live together once the application is granted but your wife doesn't need to move just so that you've already lived together for a particular period.

3. Treaty rights as a student requires the person to have comprehensive sickness insurance without regard to NHS eligibility, so that only applies if your wife had and has that. Otherwise show her employment, that's fine. It doesn't matter how many treaty rights are being exercised.

4. Generally they like to see two documents showing the same thing, so your wife's most recent payslips and a letter from the employer or contract. The working hours don't matter. There is no financial requirement, so you don't need bank statements for that purpose although if they show salary deposits they add to showing employment in addition to but not instead of the other documents. But the application doesn't require a particular salary or level of deposits.

#3 laila90

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 08:34 AM

Hi Mutly,

Thank you very much for your prompt reply.

I have a further query:

We don't really have anything concrete that would prove our whole duration of relationship apart from photos. This is because we did not make any foreign trips together or anything of the sort that would leave and imprint on official documentation. Furthermore, since we both changed our phone contracts at some point in past, we do not have calls or text records from the start of our relationship. I am a bit worried that this might prove to be a problem for us. Although, we can get written statements from close family and friends to verify the duration and authenticity of our relationship but I have read that such statements are not considered as strong by the ECOs. I was wondering if you have seen anything like this before and what would your take on this be?

We are really grateful for your time and consideration. Thank you!

#4 Mutly

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Posted 20 November 2012 - 03:28 PM

On the one hand this is not uncommon. There's no requirement to have lived together before marriage and many people don't, so it's something ECOs have seen many times before.

On the other hand it can be an issue especially where the HO scrutinses the relationship more closely, such as your case where the marriage could be seen as a means to return to the UK after the existing visa expires.

Therefore show a wide range of photos over the period. There's nothing to gain by sending literally hundreds but a few dozen for example. Letters from family and friends are not normally sufficient on their own but they are considered and the more the better as long as there aren't literally dozens. The authors should mention how long they've known you both and of your relationship. For eg. your wife's family can write when they met you, when they got to know you as her boyfriend, perhaps that you visited them often with her or whatever the case may be. And your family write the reverse, when they met her etc. Same for friends of each of you who met the other through you. If you have any tutors who knew you both, they can write letters too. Also any friends from uni, although not dozens. All should write their own letters so they don't look like everyone has signed a similar template. They should include name, address and telephone number and be signed. It's quite unlikely that they'll be contacted but it looks good if they can be. It doesn't matter whether they're handwritten or typed.

Also you can show that you were at the same uni over time with each of your student records. And if you lived in the same city and could easily commute to see each other or go out etc., show evidence of your addresses (leases, bank statements/bills with addresses) to demonstrate that. That also makes it logical that there's not much beyond photos as concrete proof that you've been together for two years already. Mention in the application that those documents are being sent for that purpose, to show you lived in the same place so there's no evidence like airline tickets of visiting each other. And of course all the ongoing correspondence by Skype or phone since you left the UK up to marriage and wedding and reception photos.

Having said all that, I'm not an advisor and these are only general points. The strictness of ECOs can also vary according to the post concerned. Advisors will be familiar with that and can also give reliable specific advice on things like how many photos and letters to include and whether there's anything else I haven't thought of which you could add, they deal with this regularly and haver experience of practices on the ground. It may be worth having a document check done before you apply to be more sure of success. Your partner can aarrange this before she leaves the UK to get married, but it can also be done by phone/internet from outside the UK.

The good news is that showing the relationship is the only major issue. With your wife working in the UK, the other criteria are all met.





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