English Language Requirement

Leading lawyers, Rabinder Singh QC and Aileen McColan, advising Liberty say that making spouses pass English language tests could be discriminatory and could amount to a breach of the right to family life under the Human Rights Act. They sight
Leading lawyers, Rabinder Singh QC and Aileen McColan, advising Liberty say that making spouses pass English language tests could be discriminatory and could amount to a breach of the right to family life under the Human Rights Act. They sight an example of someone with a degree in English from India requiring to take the test but not someone from California who speaks only Spanish.

The Director of Liberty, Shami Chakrabarti, warned that the opinion would form the basis of a high court challenge

PREVIOUS BLOG (18.08.10): The UKBA has today published a list of approved providers of English language tests for non-European migrants applying to come to the UK to join or marry their settled partner.

The tests will be compulsory for people applying from within the UK, and for visa applicants from overseas. You can find the list of approved tests and providers under by clicking here.

PREVIOUS BLOG (27.07.10): In a Ministerial Statement yesterday Baroness Neville-Jones announced this requirement will come into effect on 29 November 2010.

PREVIOUS BLOG (18.06.10): From autumn 2010, any migrant who wants to enter or remain in the UK as the partner of a British citizen or a person settled here will need to show that they can speak and understand English. A firm date of introduction will be confirmed on our blog in due course.

You will need to meet the requirement if:

•you are a national of a country outside the European Economic Area and Switzerland; and
•you are in a relationship with a British citizen or a person settled here; and
•you want to apply to enter or remain in the UK as that person's husband, wife, civil partner, fiance(e), proposed civil partner, unmarried partner or same-sex partner.

If you are not a national of a majority English-speaking country you will need to demonstrate a basic command of English (speaking and listening) at level A1 of the Common European Framework of Reference test. You will not need to demonstrate your reading and writing skills.

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