Context: I live in the UK; she does not. I am a British citizen. She is a Kazakh national living in Kazakhstan.
She has visited the UK three times in the past: once in 2018 for one month; once in 2019 for one month; and most recently in 2020 for six months. We visited the UK together on these occasions - we lived and worked in China. On the first two occasions, we departed the UK back to China.
During the most recent visit, she originally intended to stay for 3 months and said as much in her application. We arrived from China in February 2020, right at the beginning of the pandemic. By the end of April, the UK had locked down and she was forced to stay longer than her original intention. She later received an extension of her visa on these grounds - but managed to book a flight back to Kazakhstan on July 29th (two days ahead of the end of her extended visa). I remained in the UK to find work having decided not to return to China.
We were married on all three of her past visits.
We have not seen each other since that date. I was able to find work, but given that my earnings are split between salaried and self-employed, my solicitor has advised me that I will need to demonstrate at least 12 months of earnings meeting the financial requirement (rather than the usual six months). Since I only began these roles in October 2020, that means I will need to wait until October 2021 before we can apply for the spouse visa.
However, since it has been so long since we saw one another, we are really hoping that she can visit from June until October 2021 (when she will leave the UK in order for us to start the spouse visa application).
She has ties to her home country but these are related to family (her parents and siblings alongside a little English tutoring she undertakes for some relatives). Her family members are willing to write additional supporting letters demonstrating that she lives with them and has family commitments (childcare help with her nephew/niece; aforementioned tutoring) that would require her to return to Kazakhstan at the end of her visit.
- What is the likelihood of her visit visa being granted given the context I've explained?
- Will her travel history and record of compliance with past visas have a positive effect on her latest application?
- Is it wiser to state in my supporting letter that we will be eligible to apply for a Spouse Visa in 4 months, and as such, she will leave the UK at the end of her visit in order to apply? Or wiser not to mention our eventual plan to apply for a spouse visa at all?
- As an extension of the above, would stating that we intend for her to leave the UK and apply for a spouse visa in October 2021 be interpreted as contradictory to her family's statements that she has commitments in Kazakhstan that she will return to?
Thanks for any help you might offer. As you can imagine, it has been very tough for us to be apart for so long and we are hoping that the eventual spouse visa will finally put an end to our time apart - and that until that time, we can spend time together through a 4 month visit.