Visiting the UK to register a civil partnership

A person who wants to come to the UK for the purpose of registering a civil partnership (before then returning home) and who meets the required conditions may apply for leave to enter as a visitor. S/he must show that s/he intends to give notice of civil partnership, or register within the leave period that s/he is given. She must also have prior entry clearance that was granted on the basis that s/he is registering a civil partnership.

Leave to enter will be given for a period of up to six months, subject to the condition that the person does not take up employment.

Requirements for entry clearance as a visitor

A person who wants to enter the UK as a visitor must be able to prove that s/he:-

What counts as a genuine visit

For the entry clearance officer abroad or the immigration officer at the UK port of entry to accept that a person is a genuine visitor, s/he must be satisfied that the intending visitor:-

If a person has previously been in the UK and expressed a wish to study, work or settle in the UK, this should not necessarily adversely affect a new application to enter the UK as a visitor.

Even if the intending visitor does not intend to work her/himself, s/he may be refused entry as a visitor if the purpose of her/his visit is to enable someone else to work, for example, if s/he is coming to the UK to look after a child of a friend or relative to enable that friend or relative to work. This is because the main purpose of coming to the UK would not be a genuine visit.

Evidence that the intending visitor has a settled life in her/his country of residence will be helpful to prove that s/he is coming to the UK for a genuine visit. It will be helpful, for example, if the intending visitor can show that s/he has a job to return to at a definite date and/or a home of her/his own and/or family at home

Might the person be coming for another reason

It might appear to be easier for a person to enter the UK as a visitor than, for example, as a fiance(e), even if s/he is hoping to marry. If a person enters the UK saying that s/he is coming for a particular purpose and then does something else, the Immigration and Nationality Directorate of the Home Office (IND) may decide that s/he is an illegal entrant. This would be because s/he would be held to have deceived the IND on entry about the purpose of her/his stay.

If a person is found at the port of entry to have documents which suggest that the purpose of her/his stay in the UK might be something other than a visit, s/he is likely to be refused entry.

Does the intending visitor have a return ticket

The entry clearance or immigration officer will want to know that the intending visitor either has a return ticket or has the means to buy one. This will be taken into account when deciding whether or not the person is a genuine visitor.

Maintenance and accommodation without working or recourse to public funds

The intending visitor must be able to show that s/he can maintain and accommodate her/himself adequately during her/his stay. S/he must be able to show, both abroad when s/he applies for entry clearance (if s/he is a visa national) and at the port of entry when s/he arrives that s/he has enough money with her/him, or has access to enough money in the UK, to maintain and accommodate her/himself without working or recourse to public funds. This can also be shown by providing evidence of the ability of the person s/he is visiting to maintain and accommodate her/him.