I entered the UK last January 2017 on a fiancee visa. On this type of visa, the marriage should take place before the validity expires or within 6 months. So, we made further plans and finalised everything within 3 months.
The wedding was held last April. After the week-long honeymoon, my husband and I started again to collect the necessary documents to apply for Further Leave to Remain or FLR(M). When we received the marriage certificate, updated other documents and organised other correspondences, we submitted our application.
What is FLR(M)?
According to the statement in the application form, FLR(M) is an:
“Application for an extension of stay on the basis of your family life in the UK as the partner or the dependent child of a person present and settled in the UK or as a partner or as the dependent child of a person with refugee leave or humanitarian protection or as the dependent child of a person who has, or is at the same time applying for, limited leave to enter or remain as the partner of a person present and settled in the UK and for a biometric immigration document.”
FLR(M) is needed to extend the foreign spouse’s stay in the UK. On a fiancee visa, the applicant is not allowed to work or recourse to public funds. But when FLR(M) is granted, the applicant will be given a temporary residency permit, for up to 2.5 years, that will give the right to work.
What happens when the FLR(M) expires? Apply again for 2nd FLR(M) since this is on a 5-year route (on a normal application) before Indefinite Leave to Remain or ILR then the option to apply for citizenship.
So you see, some people think it’s easy to enter the UK. There are a lot of requirements to meet and paperwork to submit in order to stay in the country.
Post vs Premium
There are 2 options on how to apply for FLR(M) in the UK. I’ll try my best to differentiate the two.
On application by post, the result is within 12 weeks from submission of documents. You need to send the documents thru Royal Mail as a special delivery and buy another prepaid envelope (also a special delivery) for the return of the documents when a decision has been made. We paid £22 for the 2 envelopes.
It took me 7 weeks before I got the decision letter and my BRP card.
On a premium application, the result will be issued on the same day. It’s usually after a few hours from submission for an additional fee of £500. It’s definitely hassle-free. But the premium fee is too much and if you’re not in a rush, I would recommend the postal application.
A lot of people have said that the first FLR(M) is guaranteed as long as there is no change in the applicant’s/sponsor’s circumstances. To be honest, FLR(M) is much easier compared to the entry fiancee visa I applied.
Check my next post to know what were the requirements I submitted and the timeline of my application.