Of course, it is not only Thai girlfriends and Thai wives who wish to visit the UK or even live in the country, but there are also many Thais living and working in the country regardless of if they have a British partner. Obviously, someone just visiting the UK would need a general visitor’s Visa whilst a Thai wife wishing to live in the UK would require a UK Spouse Visa, but what happens if you don’t fall into either of those categories?
Long residents visas – a quick overview
You may be allowed to settle in the UK if you’ve been in the UK legally for 10 continuous years (known as ‘long residence’).
Settling (known as ‘indefinite leave to remain’) means you can stay in the UK without any time restrictions.
You must meet all the eligibility requirements.
If you have been living legally in the UK for 10 years or more you are in a position to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain – sometimes known as Permanent Residency or Settlement. The application would need to be made to the UK Home Office and would be known as an application under Long Residence Provisions. You can apply to settle in the UK if you’ve been in the UK legally for 10 years.
The most important factor in this application is that the applicant has lived in the UK as a “continuous resident” for 10 years or more. This can be through a variety of different immigration categories, for example, a UK Student Visa and a UK Work Visa. This means that the applicant must not have left the British Isles for a period of 6 months which can be further reduced if the absence was for a single period. The applicant must also have returned to the UK whilst they had remaining leave to enter the country.
For the purposes of this application, the leave will have also been broken if they have spent in excess of 540 days outside of the UK during the full 10-year period. If the applicant has ever received a custodial sentence after being convicted of a crime the continuous residency will also have been broken.
As with Indefinite Leave to Remain under other routes, the applicant will have to pass the Life in the UK test and provide evidence of sufficient English language skills. Also, family members will not be permitted on the application. However, if they have a partner who is not a British citizen and/or a child, they can apply once the original applicant’s application has been accepted.
This route is most relevant to individuals who have been in the UK on visa routes that do not lead to Indefinite Leave to Remain after 5 years, such as the Tier 4 categories, or to individuals who have been in the UK for 10 years in different visa categories.
If and when the applicant is granted Indefinite Leave to Remain, they will then be free from any immigration restriction in the same manner as those who have applied via other means. They will not lose their Indefinite Leave to Remain status unless they are absent from the UK for more than two years or commit a serious offense.
If you are looking to settle in the UK under the Long Residence Provisions, then why not call us on +66 (0)80 102 2328, +66 (0) 38 420 313 or +44 (0) 20 8133 8059, email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or alternatively contact us via our website?