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Howard, Immigration Lawyer
Category: UK Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 459
Experience:  Senior Partner with nearly 20 years experience in UK Immigration Law.
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I am a non-EEA citizen and have been here in the UK since 2006.

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I am a non-EEA citizen and have been here in the UK since 2006. I have a family member residence card for an EEA National. We were married in 2008 and have 2 children. The residence card was issued in April 2009 and expires April 2014.
In 2011 we were divorced and I currently visit them frequently and pay child support each month.
I live with my partner, she is English and we have been living together for 2 years. I am a tenant on our property & I have a full time job.
I would like to apply for permanent residence here and would like advice on what is required and or assistance as necessary. I did not ask for a new visa when I got divorced and I have received a few different answers when I have asked this question to agencies on line. The latest response to my question about gaining residency said I had a problem as my visa was not relevent since the marriage breakdown. I am now very concerned what I should do, it is very important I get this sorted out as soon as possible for so many reasons.
If you were married for at least 3 years before divorce proceedings were initiated and have spent at least 1 year in the UK then you might be able to remain in the UK regardless of the current relationship, and especially if one or both of the children was born in the UK and is still in the UK, under the European rules relating to the right to a family life.

This is something that should have been dealt with at the time rather than 2 years later and this delay does not exactly help matters.

Read the following document from section 5.4.2:

It is strongly recommended that you call the helpline for advice and confirmation to make sure you are satisfied - 0845(NNN) NNN-NNNN- but you should be able to remain in the UK and apply for PR in due course.
Howard and other UK Immigration Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Ok, I read the document. If I apply now, what do I apply for? I have the right to visit my boys who live here & were born here. The marriage broke down before the 3 years and proceedings were started.


I have also been told that I cannot change to a partner visa although I have been with my current partner for over 2 years, is that also true? What would be the case if we wanted to get married? Would this be a problem?

What do you mean by you cannot 'change' to a partner visa? Are you talking about not being able to switch within the UK or not being able to apply at all? Who told you this?

Was the date of the divorce within 3 years or after 3 years of the date of marriage?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

The divorce was applied for inside of 3 years, the decree absolute was granted outside of 3 years.


I think that it was perhaps that I could not switch from within the UK. I am presuming from what you say that if I was to apply for a new visa linked to my partner I would have to leave the UK?. We have been living together for more than 2 years now and I have been here for several years before. The information came from an online source.

I suggest an EEA2 visa application for retained right of residence.

You will note that section 5.4.7 of the document I linked to outlines how you can retain the right of residence based on having access rights to the child. The form also simply asks for the dates of marriage and the date the divorce was finalised. The form further asks if you were married for 3 years and the answer is that you were, this being the period from the date of marriage to the date of the divorce being finalised.

The application should provide you with a retained right of residence and after 5 years in the UK you can make an EEA4 Permanent Residence application. You might expect to be asked why you did not apply sooner but it is important to note that EEA rules do not require you to make these applications - it is simply recommended.

I hope the above answers your questions. Please rate the service that I have provided and thereafter if you required further clarifications or have other questions then please do not hesitate to ask.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Thank you.


Finally, could you represent me with the application if required? Also, how long do you expect it to take as clearly I need to start the application very soon. Is there anything else that you would recommend which would help, or documents I need?

I would like to represent your case but this site does not allow me to do so.

Perhaps you could search Google UK for 'uk work visa and immigration consultants'.

You will need to evidence the areas mentioned in the section mentioned in my previous post of the document that I linked to. All facts stated on the application form should be evidenced and this would include evidence that your ex-partner is still exercising treaty rights in the UK. If you do not have a Court order granting access rights then a affidavit from your ex-partner should be supplied to confirm the facts.

If there are things that you are unable to supply then you will need to make clear why you cannot supply them.

These applications can take quite a long time - often up to 6 months and sometimes longer.

Please remember to provide a rating of the service provided.

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