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I am a British national, currently engaged to a Japanese national. Our intentions are to reside permanently in Japan from next year, but want to marry in the UK first.

Our current plan is for him to apply for a Marriage Visit visa, come some time in December, and marry in March 2019. After we've got married I will apply for a Spouse Visa to live in Japan and move over there.

We have no intentions of living in England permanently, but my fiance was in England from May to November this year on a 6 month tourist visa (i moved back home after living in Japan for 3 years), and I'm worried that because of this, he wont be eligible for the marriage visitor visa.

If anyone has any experience in this, or any advice, I'd be very appreciative.

  • Welcome to the site. Your fiancé is eligible to apply, however the marriage visitor visa criteria contain the same limitation on living in the UK for extended periods through frequent visits as for visa-free entry. The purpose is of course distinct, but having already spent the maximum 6 months in the UK a plan to return in December for another 4 months may be a red flag. It would look better if he had a job offer on his return. Your question about the Spouse Visa for Japan belongs on expatriates.stackexchange.com – Traveller Nov 13 '18 at 22:03
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    I deleted the part about Japan because it's a completely separate question (and off-topic, as @Traveller points out). It can be annoying but the Stack Exchange format doesn't work well when there are two completely different questions on the same page. The Japan part of your question is a perfectly good question, so please do post that to Expatriates. (If you click the "edited [at time X]" link, you can see the edit history, which will let you copy and paste the text from your original question.) – David Richerby Nov 13 '18 at 23:51
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    Close-voters: this question is not about long-term travel. The question is about a short-term visit to the UK to get married. After that, the couple are planning to immigrate to Japan but the question isn't about that part. – David Richerby Nov 14 '18 at 10:19
  • By now op could report back... – chx Aug 2 '19 at 3:56
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Yes, the Marriage Visitor Visa is right for you as it is for couples who don’t plan to live in the UK after marriage.

There is some good advice mentioned in the comments:

Your fiancé is eligible to apply, however the marriage visitor visa criteria contain the same limitation on living in the UK for extended periods through frequent visits as for visa-free entry. The purpose is of course distinct, but having already spent the maximum 6 months in the UK a plan to return in December for another 4 months may be a red flag. It would look better if he had a job offer on his return.

As for the eligibility requirements, the GOV Website clearly states this:

Eligibility

You must prove that you’re:

  • 18 or over
  • free to give notice of marriage, to marry or enter into a civil partnership in the UK within 6 months of your arrival
  • in a genuine relationship
  • visiting the UK for less than 6 months
  • leaving the UK at the end of your visit
  • able to support yourself without working or help from public funds, or that you can be supported and housed by relatives or friends able to meet the cost of the return or onward journey
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