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Can an illegal immigrant marry a UK citizen in UK and be to reside in UK legally?


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Answered 2009-10-19 13:03:18
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It will depend on a variety of factors. For example, recent case law allows marriage by proxy in countries which recognise that procedure (Brazil being one) so an illegal immigrant could marry a British citizen in their home country without the need for the bride or the groom to be present (that is the proxy element). In addition, the European Convention on Human Rights says that the right to marry is inalienable, so it cannot be said that an illegal immigrant cannot marry here. However, marriage does not guarantee a right to stay in the country. For marriages taking place in the UK, a Certificate of Approval must be acquired first if a person is subject to Immigration controls (The exception being if you are both Anglican and marry in an Anglican religious ceremony - then you do not need permission from the UKBA) Illegal immigrants who marry by proxy, in an Anglican religious ceremony, or who satisfy the UKBA that they should be allowed to marry will still have to apply for a "Further Leave to remain" visa which can be denied for any number of reasons. After 2 years, providing you meet the relevant criteria, you can apply for "Indefinite Leave to Remain" which again, can be granted or refused at the UKBA's discretion.

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