Children whose parents live in the UK
There are several options in this category depending on the personal circumstances of the child and family. Different rules apply if parents are settled or have a British citizenship, or parents are spouses / partners of British citizens. Alternatively, they can have a temporary leave in the UK (under PBS categories or others categories).
Children of British citizens or settled persons
In this case, the provisions of Part 8 of the Immigration Rules apply. Both parents must have Indefinite Leave to remain or be British, and the child must under 18 years of age at the time of application. If a child has only one parent who is settled or has a British citizenship, and the second parent does not participate in the child’s upbringing and his whereabouts is unknown, then the parent-sponsor must prove his sole responsibility for the child.
Sole responsibility: there are no clear criteria for proving sole responsibility, except when:
– a child has only one parent in the birth certificate; or
– parents are divorced, and there is a court order about the child’s living arrangements; or
– the second parent has died and there is a death certificate.
In all other cases, the main evidence is the written statements of people involved in the child’s life: school teachers, educators, doctors, neighbours and friends. They should clearly indicate that the second parent does not take part in the child’s upbringing, does not see with him and does not support financially.
There are no minimum income requirements for the sponsoring parent. However, it is necessary to show the availability of funds in a bank account, sufficient for supporting the child in the UK without applying for benefits (adequate maintenance), and / or regular income. It is also necessary to show that the child will have a separate room (adequate accommodation).
If the application is approved, the child will receive a 5-year indefinite leave to enter/remain. After 5 years of residence in the UK, the child will be able to apply for British citizenship.
Children of spouses of British citizens or settled persons
These rules apply in the following circumstances:
– the child under 18 years old and is not a British or an EU citizen;
– his parent applies for a spouse / partner visa or is already in the UK on such a visa;
– the second parent (biological) is not involved in the child’s upbringing (in this case it is necessary to show sole responsibility for the child (link)).
Minimum income requirements apply:
• The sponsoring spouse must have an income of at least £ 18,600 per year. In addition to this amount, the sponsor must show £ 3,800 for the first child and £ 2,400 for each subsequent child. If the parent of the child applies for a spouse/partner visa from the UK, the income of both spouses shall be taken into account.
• Savings of both parent and sponsoring partner may be considered.
Financial requirements do not apply if the parent is on a 10-year route to settlement.
Leave will be granted in line with the non-settled parent.
Children of non-settled parents
If one of the parents applies for a visa or is in the UK on one of the PBS categories or Sole Representative visa, then children under 18 can apply for dependent family member visa. Leave will be granted in line with the parent, and the child may apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain in line with the parent.
If the child joins the parent later, he/she must live in the UK for 5 years on a dependent visa and only then can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain.
Financial requirements: the parent must show that there is a certain amount on his/her own account (Current requirements: from £680 to £1,890, depending on the category). Money must be held on the account for 90 or 28 days (depending on category). Please note that these amounts may change from year to year.
For the sole parents it is necessary to show his/her sole responsibility for the child (link).