Q&As

Following a family permit refusal under the Surinder Singh route, can an applicant switch (in-country) to leave to remain as a partner under Appendix FM?

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Produced in partnership with Gary McIndoe of Latitude Law
Published on LexisPSL on 28/06/2019

The following Immigration Q&A produced in partnership with Gary McIndoe of Latitude Law provides comprehensive and up to date legal information covering:

  • Following a family permit refusal under the Surinder Singh route, can an applicant switch (in-country) to leave to remain as a partner under Appendix FM?

Following a family permit refusal under the Surinder Singh route, can an applicant switch (in-country) to leave to remain as a partner under Appendix FM?

This Q&A considers a scenario where there has been a refusal of an in-country application under the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016 (the 2016 Regulations), SI 2016/1052. If a family permit application was refused while the applicant was outside the UK, in-country switching would not be an issue.

The first factor to be considered when deciding whether a partner application is a viable option is how the applicant has in fact entered the UK. Immigration Rules, Appendix FM, para E-LTRP.2.1 and Immigration Rules, Appendix FM, para E–LTRP.2.2 set out the immigration status requirement for a partner application as follows:

‘Immigration status requirements

E-LTRP.2.1. The applicant must not be in the UK—

(a) as a visitor; or

(b) with valid leave granted for a period of 6 months or less, unless that leave is as a fiancé(e) or proposed civil partner, or was granted pending the outcome of family court or divorce proceedings

E-LTRP.2.2. The applicant must not be in the UK—

(a) on immigration bail, unless:

(i) the Secretary of State is satisfied that the applicant arrived in the UK more than 6 months prior to the date of application; and

(ii) paragraph EX.1. applies; or

(b) in breach of immigration laws (except that, where paragraph 39E of these Rules

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