What other options are available under the immigration rules and directives, for a British citizen to bring his wife and two young children to UK from Afghanistan? He cannot satisfy the income requirement of £18.600 and I wonder if he can rely on Surinder Singh route or Article 8: Right to Private and Family life based on exceptional cirumstances, compassionate grounds and for the best interest of the children? Thank you.

  • Are the children British citizens?
    – ouflak
    Jul 19, 2017 at 10:09
  • Not yet, I guess he can apply for citizenship for them once they are in the UK,given that he is a British citizen. Or what do you think?
    – Justice17
    Jul 19, 2017 at 10:54
  • No, the children would assume the status of the less priviledged parent, in this case the mother. So they would have to settle (minimum 2 years presence) in the UK and, after the mother is also settled, apply for registration. I have heard of a very few successful cases where registration did not require the mother to also be settled or in the process of becoming a permanent resident.
    – ouflak
    Jul 19, 2017 at 11:14
  • 1
    @ouflak unless "not yet" means that the children are currently eligible for UK passports but haven't yet applied for them (a circumstance under which many would incorrectly answer "not yet"). For example, if the children are the British citizen's, and the British citizen is one "otherwise than by descent," then the children are already British citizens even if the parents are unaware of that fact.
    – phoog
    Jul 19, 2017 at 15:18
  • @phoog, I'm assuming the OP means what they said. Not yet, as in, they are not yet citizens. If the OP is confusing passports with citizenship, then hopefully they will come back and read these comments and clarify.
    – ouflak
    Jul 19, 2017 at 15:32

1 Answer 1


He can rely on Surinder Singh, but that means he will have to firmly establish residence in another EU country (meeting their standards for residence), bring his family to that country, where they also will need to establish residence, and then reenter the UK with them.

Right to Private life normally has to do with people who are already present in the UK. Since the British citizen could presumbly go to Afghanistan to be with his family, a possibility the UK government will not deny or impede, it really can't be invoked in this case.

The only other possibility I can think of is for the wife to qualify on her own right and be able bring her children with her. There are a variety of possibilities here including student visas and work visas. This is something they would have to explore.

  • Many thanks for your time and advice; I appreciate.
    – Justice17
    Jul 19, 2017 at 10:40
  • @Justice17 "meeting their standards" isn't quite correct; the conditions for establishing residence elsewhere in the EU are governed by the freedom of movement directive, not by each individual country.
    – phoog
    Jul 19, 2017 at 15:21

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