Questions

This page is to make available answers to questions I have been asked. This is in no way a substitute for professional legal advice. I have a personal interest in the immigration laws in the United Kingdom, and try to use that knowledge to assist others.

TCN = Third Country National (or non-European Citizen)

I am a British Citizen married to a TCN, do the EEA Regulations allow me to apply for a residence card for my spouse?

Generally, the answer to this question is "No", they do not. Whilst you may think that being British makes you a European Union Citizen, for the purposes of immigration you are not considered a Union Citizen whilst you are living in the United Kingdom. There are some more complex exceptions to this rule, but the main exception is in Regulation 9, that you moved your centre of life to another European State (and lived there with your spouse) before returning to the United Kingdom (this is known as the Surinder Singh route, for more information have a look at the FreeMovement Blog or BritCits). It's worth noting that whilst you do not have an automatic right under EU law for your spouse to live in the UK, you are free to travel to any other European State with your spouse and to live there as long as you are economically active in that country.

I am a TCN married to a European National (e.g. Spanish) living in my spouse's home country (Spain) and would like to travel to the UK alone? Do I need a visa?

Yes, you will need a visa if you are travelling alone. The requirement to enter the UK under the EU route is that you are travelling to the UK with your spouse or that they are already in the UK and that you are going to be joining them here.

 

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