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Thomas, Solicitor
Category: UK Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 7620
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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Hi Thomas, just read your answer here:

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Hi Thomas,

just read your answer here:

i have similar circumstances, but have an additional question. How long am I legally allowed out of the UK (British) while my wife (non-British) is on her own in the UK (currently on spouse cp visa)?

She's now been in the UK 2 years and wants to apply for her ILR but we're worried that when they look at my passport they will see that i spend 25 out of every 35 days outside the UK for work. This has been for 7 months now. What is the best course of action? should I come back to the uk to work in a uk company for a few months before applying ( dont wanna do this)? or will it be ok to apply?

thank you for your time.

I'm Wendy, and I’m a moderator for this topic. I sent Thomas a message to follow up with you here, when he is back online.

If I can help further, please let me know. Thank you for your continued patience.

Thanks for requesting me.

I will be able to answer at 9.


Thanks for your patience.

I would say that you should still apply for ILR. Mostly, this is because if your wife is to remain in the UK then she will have to make either an application for further leave to remain OR an application for ILR.

The reason that I would say she should apply for ILR is that effectively you would have the same problem with that application, so by applying for ILR even if they reject it they may still give her FLR.

The time spent outside the UK is a bit of a problem. Generally they look for half the time to have been spent in the UK. I would say that you would be best off submitting a detailed statutory declaration drafted by her solicitor stating why you have spent this time outside the UK. If it is for work you should outline that the sole purpose for many of the days is for work purposes. Further you should state that your permanent home where you intend to reside is in the UK, drawing attention to any social or family ties that you also have to the UK and asking them to disregard the absence.

You still have a decent chance, but any additional time you can spend in the UK before the application would be beneficial.

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Kind regards,

Thomas, Solicitor
Satisfied Customers: 7620
Experience: BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.



ok thanks for that information. I forgot to mention my wife has been in the uk for 10 years now on various visas. Only 1 occasion was she outside the uk for more than 3 months and this was for 3 months and 18 days.


This occurred because the home office said she HAS to leave the UK to switch from member of EEA (previous marriage) to new spouse visa and apply from outside. The embassy in her home country (jordan) had her passport for ages and it got delayed so due to their system and their delays it take more than 3 months.


Additionally, she didn't leave the uk when she divorced and remained in the on that Family member of EEA citizen visa for about 12 months during that time, we had a uk marriage and child. (the embassy didnt mention this as being a problem at the time and granted her the spouse visa from Jordan - they didn't say why didn't she immediately leave...)


So do you think she should apply under then 10 year rule or under the 2 year marriage rule? And finally after getting ILR can she apply immediately for citizenship or she needs to wait 1 year? (someone said since she's been here several years prior there is no need to wait the 1 year?) please confirm this.


i need my passport to travel as well so do you recommend the 1 day service? or will we get put on the spot which could be counter productive..


thanks. i'll make sure you have the highest feedback :D

I will answer at 9.


If she has not been outside the UK for more than 180 days in any one single absence and has an otherwise unbroken chain of legal leave in the UK then it might be more sensible to apply under the long residence rules.

However, if she remained on her family permit after divorce prcceedings were commenced without applying to retain her EEA treay rights then I woudl not apply under this ground and instead apply on the basis of her spouse visa.

If she obtains ILR then she can apply straight away. If she was applying to naturalise under the standard requirements then she would have to wait a further 12 months, but because you are married she can apply under the spouse requirements for naturalisation, which means she does not have to wait. There is no such restriction in the spouse requirements as you will see here:-

If you need your passport then, yes, you shoudl book to use the same day service.

Please rate my answer.

Kind regards,


Is there any further information you require?

I just want to ensure that you are satisfied, so please let me know if you have any further queries on your position. Please remember to RATE my answer, if you are satisfied.

Kind regards,