How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Thomas Your Own Question

Thomas, Solicitor
Category: UK Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 7150
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
Type Your UK Immigration Law Question Here...
Thomas is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Hi. I originall came into the UK on a ancestry visa, that stated

Resolved Question:

Hi. I originall came into the UK on a ancestry visa, that stated on it (to acc spouse), as I was married and my partner got an ancestry visa as her grandfather was british. This visa ran out in 2007, we then got a residence permit that read (limited leave to remain) which lasted another 12 months, but in that 12 months, we eperated and she went back to South Africa and I stayed (illegaly). We have since got divorced (a family member signed the divorce papers on my behalf) as I was not in the country. I have met someone else and am very much in love and can not bare the thought of being with out her. I know that if I leave the UK to go back to South Africa and try and renew visa, there is good chance that I wont be allowed back into the UK which is not an option. I have been working for 90% of the time that I have been in the UK and I can prove it, I have paid national insurance and tax and would like to think that I am a respected member of my community. I want to stay in the UK but want to do it legally but on the same note, I would also like to be able to go back to South Africa if needs be, ie: death in the family. Please can someone help.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: UK Immigration Law
Expert:  Thomas replied 4 years ago.



What nationality is the person you are in a relationship with?



Customer: replied 4 years ago.
She is English (born and raised)
Expert:  Thomas replied 4 years ago.
Do you cohabit and, if so, how long for?

Customer: replied 4 years ago.
We have been living together for approx 5 yrs.
Expert:  Thomas replied 4 years ago.



When did you obtain your final divorce decree?


When did your leave to remain in this country expire?


Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Hi Tom, sorry about the delay there. My leave to remain ran out in june 08 and was divorced in february of the same year ( so divorced before my leave ran out)
Expert:  Thomas replied 4 years ago.


If you have been cohabiting with your partner for a period of two years from the date of the divorce decree you may be eligible to apply for an unmarried partner's visa.


The criteria for such a visa is as follows:-

  • any previous marriage, civil partnership or similar relationship, has permanently broken down
  • you have been living together in a relationship similar to marriage or civil partnership for two years or more
  • you have suitable accommodation which is owned or lived in only by you and your household, and where you and your dependants can live without any help from public funds
  • you can support yourselves and any dependants without any help from public funds
  • you intend to live together permanently
  • your partner is not under 21, and
  • you are not under 21 at the date of arrival in the UK.

You whould have to produce substantial supporting documentary evidence for the above and in particular that for the length of your relationship.

You would also have to pass an english language test before applying. You can contact the UKBA or the UK embassy in SA about this.


The UKBA would require you to return home to make this application, they will not entertain an application made in country because you are illegal. You cannot apply in country because you are illegal unless there are exceptional circumstances that apply (ie. where to do so would prejudcially affect your health or the health of your partner/child.)


Your overstay in and of itself is not a sufficient reason to refuse the visa applicaiton if made out of country (Immigration Rule 320)


You should get a UK solicitor to draft the application for you before you reutrn to SA to submit it. It would cost around £800-1000 +VAT.


You can find UK solicitors using the following site:-


If this has been useful please kindly click accept so that I may be rewarded for my time. It will be gratefully received and you will be free to ask follow up questions.

Kind regards,


Thomas, Solicitor
Satisfied Customers: 7150
Experience: BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
Thomas and other UK Immigration Law Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.

What Customers are Saying:

  • A quick response, a succinct and helpful answer in simple English. I believe I can now confront the counter party with confidence -- worth the 30 bucks! Rick Leeds, UK
< Previous | Next >
  • A quick response, a succinct and helpful answer in simple English. I believe I can now confront the counter party with confidence -- worth the 30 bucks! Rick Leeds, UK
  • I did not know a French Law service existed and I was very impressed with the speed of reply --- very professional. Many thanks! Ms. Baker Alfafar, Spain
  • Thank you so much for your help. Your answers were really useful and came back so quickly. Great! Maggie USA
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin Kernersville, NC

Meet The Experts:

  • Thomas



    Satisfied Customers:

    BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
< Last | Next >
  • Thomas's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
  • UK_Lawyer's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    I am a qualified solicitor and an expert in UK law.
  • INC's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    LL.B, Pg.Dip, LL.M, M.B.A (Pending), Solicitor-Advocate. UK Practising Certificate issued by SRA., DIFC Courts Registered (Dubai)
  • A Hayat's Avatar

    A Hayat

    Immigration Solicitor

    Satisfied Customers:

    13 years specialist skill in UK Immigration & Nationality Law
  • Paul Richmond's Avatar

    Paul Richmond


    Satisfied Customers:

    LL.B (Hons) (First Class), LL.M (Distinction), Immigration Barrister (12 years)
  • Awan-Legal's Avatar



    Satisfied Customers:

    Specialist in immigration law with the highest level of accreditation in this area and with many years experience.
  • John Knox's Avatar

    John Knox


    Satisfied Customers:

    solicitor with 8 years experience