I am a U.S. citizen with a EU residence card. Married in Portugal nearly 5 years ago now.
We are already in the UK and are of the understanding we have to leave the country to get my family member visa; and my passport will be held during the process.
As we are in the UK already is there a process we can follow so that we do not have to bear financial burden of leaving, waiting for the visa, and then returning? It's my understanding that there may be options for us.
We've been here 6 months, although I've crossed border multiple times (last was 2 months ago). Out intent was to finish my spouses school then we leave; but we've decided to stay. But as we learned we can't start the family member visa process IN the UK we are of the understanding we have to leave. Is that true? Another EU+US couple said we do have an option and my EU spouse need to initiate a process.
I did receive quite the grilling crossing the border two months ago. I travel again in two weeks and am scared im going to be rejected. Please help!
It seems I can ask for a Family Permit at my next entry/crossing so long as I have my evidence (passport, EU residence card, marriage license):
http://www.immigrationboards.com/eea-ro ... 14867.html
That gives me 6 months more to ask for EEA(fm) residency card, and can seek work immediately if I so choose.
Can someone re-confirm all this?
Although you can apply for a job without having your RC in the UK you may find many employers wary of offering you a job without having the relevant documents because they get fined a lot for employing illegal immigrants. When you make an EEA2 application you should receive a letter from the Home Office acknowledging your application and confirming to any employers that you do have the right to work here. That can help. Also, if you need to travel whilst the Home Office has your passport you can ask for it back and it doesn’t invalidate your application.
You may like to go to the Partnership meeting in London (there is one this Saturday) and ask the solicitors there about what they think of trying to get an EEAFP at the border when you arrive as they are likely have had experience of people doing this. Details here: http://uklgig.org.uk/?page_id=80#partnership-meetings
One final point. If you are married to an EEA citizen you are entitled to live and work here in the UK as long as your partner is exercising treaty rights here. The EEAFP and EEA2 are not visas. You are not required to have them. You do not become 'illegal' if your EEAFP expires and you have no EEA2. The point of applying for both is that it makes your life easier as you don't have to keep proving your status all the time.
I've let this post slide in time, as I thought everything was okay. But as of this past weekend and crossing back in to the UK I had a lot of trouble. I'll probably head to the next meeting on July 18, 2015 especially if I don't get any replies to this post. Especially after reading and understanding what you said about EEAFP now. I have questions .. read on:
1) 3-4 months ago under advisement I crossed the border (Heathrow), identified myself as the spouse of an EU resident. I carried my marriage cert, birth, letter from my spouse, copy of his ID cards, and his passport number. The agents were EXTREMELY friendly, processed me and gave me a stamp in my passport. This stamp says 6 months, and does NOT have the text that I don't have access to public funds. from my understanding this stamp then meant that I've identified myself to the country and that I can start my next permit of visa application. I think i've mistakenly understood that this gave me some more rights some how.
2) 2 months ago I left and crossed the border again (Luton). I had all papers again. The agent saw my previous stamp and *didn't even ask for supporting documents*. The line was short and we had a casual chat about my next steps and that I should identify myself to home office. I mentioned I had more trips and I can't give up my passport just yet. He said you need resolve this upon that next trip.
3) That "next trip" was a few days ago. I entered at Gatwick and the crap hit the fan. It was explained to me that i've overstayed my rolling-six months as an American; and that for me to exercise my right to be here via my parters rights... he had to BE WITH ME. He was NOT with me on the previous two crossings. I explained that my intention was to give up my passport after this return in order to get the proper paperwork. I had 3 agents around me, one of which had handcuffs and bullet proof vest and explained to me I'm 1 hair of getting sent back to the states. That seemed very strange and was an uphill battle in the conversation to explain i wouldn't go to the states.. i'd go back to PORTUGAL. So why am I being threatened to sent back? We talk for 10 more minutes and I explained absolutely everything.
After the conversation with the agent(s) i was left with some confusing issues:
1) Am I required to cross with my partner., or should have? in the past crossing I was alone. Although in the quick set of questions I think these agents think I crossed with my partner
2) Am I subject to rolling-6-month-in-sequential-year issue? I thought I had a right to stay as the spouse. ( granted I need to apply as I had intended.
3) What stamp do I have? I'm still a visitor, it seems?
4) The agents debated if I was formally warned/instructed on my last crossing. I said no. I had a casual conversation with the agent. He agreed I need to fix my papers after this 3rd trip out. Now, this time in my passport I have a 3-month stamp and a "W" with a circle on it as an official warning. I think because my "warning" status was in debate/question, they had to let me in because there was not documentation of a formal warning.
And today. I called the home office and I don't think I asked for the right thing.
4) Am I supposed to be applying for FLR(M) or EEA(FM)? I identified to the agent on the phone that I'm a spouse of a family member exercising his rights to be here and I need a visa to join him. She agreed I was FLR(M) and that I need to LEAVE THE COUNTRY for FLR(M). What happened to EEA(FM). Does 1 replace the other? Are they different but equal? Do I need both? Do I have to leave the country?
I'm really confused and desperate today. I don't know if I can hold out for information until next weeks meeting! Please help clarify what you think my next steps are. I will also attend next weeks meeting.
No, but if you aren’t your partner should already be in the UK. You have to be able to join your partner otherwise your partner would have to fly out of the country to fly back in ‘accompanying’ you!1) Am I required to cross with my partner., or should have?
Not if your partner is exercising treaty rights here.2) Am I subject to rolling-6-month-in-sequential-year issue?
Did you ask for an EEAFP? The easy options (for them) would be to treat you as a US visitor.3) What stamp do I have? I'm still a visitor, it seems?
You should be making an EEA2 application if your partner can make an EEA1 application at the same time which will demonstrate your entitlement to the EEA2. This can do from within the UK.4) Am I supposed to be applying for FLR(M) or EEA(FM)? I identified to the agent on the phone that I'm a spouse of a family member exercising his rights to be here and I need a visa to join him. She agreed I was FLR(M) and that I need to LEAVE THE COUNTRY for FLR(M). What happened to EEA(FM). Does 1 replace the other? Are they different but equal? Do I need both? Do I have to leave the country?
As are they. The rules change so often and are so complicated.I'm really confused
You are amazing. This backs up where I thought I had left the situation months ago. Thank you for your clarifications.
I will prep all my paper work for EEA2/etc and go to the next meeting. That should still give me a month or so on the other side to finalize papers.
thank you again for keeping me calm.
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