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I am a Jordanian citizen working as a civil engineer in Jordan. I met my British wife in Jordan whilst she was studying Arabic in my country. We travelled to 5 countries together - including Schengen area. We are not planning to settle in the UK. Her family has visited me in Jordan.

Now I want to apply to visit her and her family for Christmas as it is really hard for her to travel because she is in her last year at university.

I will provide them with these papers-

  • Employment letter
  • Company registration to show that the company is genuine
  • NOC
  • Marriage certificate/family book
  • Invitation letter to stay at her accommodation
  • Paper to show that her family own the place and they have a room for me
  • A cover letter
  • old travel history (USA, Mexico, Cyprus, Egypt, Saudi Arabia,Hungary, Italy)
  • planned itinerary
  • 6 months bank statement that has enough to fund my stay but I get paid in cash so I can’t provide pay slips. I deposit the money into my account monthly and there are transactions always.

I already have a previous US visa rejection for not providing enough documents to show ties to my country. Do I have a good chance of getting a visa or is it better not to risk a rejection?

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closed as primarily opinion-based by Glorfindel, Dirty-flow, David Richerby, bytebuster, user 56513 May 17 at 11:28

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    We can't say what chance you have. Your visa application is decided on your application and any other information the UK authorities may already hold. Of course, if you always opt not to risk a rejection you'd never go anywhere. Your list looks reasonable to me, but it's the detail that counts. If you can find some way to strengthen your financial documents it can only help. – Redd Herring May 16 at 4:29
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    It will be difficult because you get paid in cash. Can you get any document from your employer which verifies what amount your salary is? This will be very helpful in getting the visa. – Michael Hampton May 16 at 5:00
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    We are not planning to settle in the UK This is your prerogative to prove it emphatically, because you are a very likely candidate to stay back because of your wife, in the eyes of UKVI. So better get evidence of paid salary on paper from your employer and make a watertight application. – DumbCoder May 16 at 11:53
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    You seems to have the ‘I can afford the trip’ box ticked. I think you need more ‘incentive to go home’ documents. Do you have a mortgage or long term rent agreement you can show? What family ties do you have? – Notts90 May 16 at 12:19
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    I think from my experience you’ve shown enough international travel experience and economic/job ties to Jordan for a reasonable ECO to approve you for a visa. Two issues of concern however are the lack of pay slips and the fact that you’re visiting a wife. Naturally close family are viewed among the most binding ties and many have abandoned their home countries and jobs to be with their spouses. Demonstrating that your wife will move to live with you in Jordan, and not vice versa is key. – user 56513 May 17 at 11:26
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The job of immigration control is to presume you intend to immigrate (stay extended/indefinitely), and then allow you to show otherwise. It's not just you; this is how all immigration agencies treat all visitors.

So you have lots of evidence of ability to afford the trip. That would appear to fend off one of their concerns. That being that a person who lands, and then runs out of money, and now stuck in the UK finds themselves obliged to either rely on public services (the dole) or get a job. Those two things are highly undesired.

You are also showing a lot of paperwork to the effect that you are invited. That's a fairly common trope among countries with a high number of illegal immigrants trying to get into the country to illegally seek employ. It would never dawn on an American to try to prove to UKVI that he's "been invited". I would think if an American did, it would cast shade on their motivations/mindset - and thus, the accuracy of their application.

There's an adage in American law, "if the facts are with you, argue the facts, if the law is with you, argue the law, and if nothing is with you, just argue". In other words, lacking necessary arguments, they argue unnecessary ones. I see you making unnecessary cases, because perhaps you know you are falling short on necessary ones.

The big one you're falling short on is "Why will you return to Jordan at the end of your planned trip?" I mean it's obvious. Your wife is in the UK, she has an abode there, you could live very inexpensively with her, UK is an affluent country where you can easily work illegally to support yourself... why go back to Jordan at all? Well, why would you go back to Jordan?

You need to show why. Show home-ties, show an owned house, a solid job that's better than the typical illegal jobs like dishwashing or farm work (a civil engineer couldn't get a government license), family ties, community ties, charitable organization involvement, local political office, etc.

It would also help if immigration could understand what the endgame of this marriage is (i.e. the point at which you're actually together.) Again the assumption is that your ultimate plan is to settle with her in the UK. To rebut that assumption, you need to have a credible alternative plan that makes sense.

  • This presumption issue is critical, and the emphasis on the fact that it is not personal is also important. UK law doesn't express this presumption explicitly (as does, for example, US law), but the main effect of the presumption is to place the burden of proof on the applicant, which Appendix V of the Immigration Rules does very clearly by saying at V4.2 that "the applicant must satisfy the decision maker that they are a genuine visitor." The rest of the answer is also nicely done. – phoog May 16 at 14:34
  • +1 Excellent answer. The part I disagree a little with is a solid job that's better than anything you could get in the UK illegally. A civil engineer by itself is a solid career virtually anywhere. I don’t think he has to show it’s better than anything he could get in the UK illegally. – user 56513 May 17 at 11:27
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    @user56513 Yes, my point being the kinds of jobs you get illegally in the UK are dishwasher, field hand, lawn mower in a landscaping firm, or line cook in a takeaway. So your job back home needs to be much better than that. I disagree that a civil engineer can work anywhere; he can share his opinion anywhere, but he can't get hired at a decent wage because he can't prove right-to-work; and the government won't give him a license. – Harper May 17 at 12:32
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    @Harper that's true. I think "I don’t think he has to show it’s better than anything he could get in the UK illegally" means that the visa officer will know that a civil engineer is not going to find illegal work as a civil engineer in the UK and will most likely conclude on their own that leaving a civil engineer job elsewhere for illegal employment in the UK would be a cost to the applicant, not a benefit. I can imagine cases in which the desperation to join the spouse might seem to justify that cost, though this doesn't seem to be such a case. – phoog May 17 at 13:13
  • @Harper You misunderstood my point. Obviously without work authorization the most qualified person cannot work. That's a given. – user 56513 May 17 at 14:40

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