Does anyone have any experience of how UK Family Visas and polyamory interact with each other, if at all?
My partner of several years (M) is a non-EU citizen who met me and his other partner of several years (F) while in the UK. M then got a job in an EU country, where he has been for the past year. He is now aiming to come back to the UK on a Tier 2 work visa.
F and I are both UK citizens and we are good friends, our 3-way relationship is all above board. We are willing to commit to hitching our lives together in a serious long-term way and to become functionally a family. Hopefully M can make it all the way to permanent settlement on the work visa route, in which case our relationship style will not become an issue. The thorny question is:
If M can't rack up the required 5 years of continuous employment, do we have any hope of keeping him here by moving him onto a Family Visa track?
(We have read the requirements and we understand that first there would need to be either 1) a wedding, or 2) a two year history of M living together with one (or both?) of us with joint household finances and savings.)
Assuming we can meet all other requirements, would the authorities use the polyamory angle to deny the family visa application on the grounds that neither of M's serious relationships qualify as "genuine and subsisting" because of the lack of monogamy?
If the authorities won't accept polyamorous relationships as valid, is there any real hope of being able to present an ordinary-looking relationship/marriage between M and just one of us, where we simply let the authorities assume monogamy? Will they specifically ask about that? If the reality comes out, might M then be blacklisted for deception? I've heard that the authorities demand to see relationship evidence like emails and online messages between the couple, which in our case would reveal the polyamorous reality very quickly, so we fear that trying to quietly pass for a monogamous couple might end in disaster.
In any case, all three of us prefer to be honest and above board in all things (lies and half-truths are frankly too damn stressful to maintain), but we also feel really concerned that probably full honesty will lead us directly into a brick wall where a family visa is concerned.
Sadly we can't claim that non-monogamy is a cultural norm for any of us so that doesn't help.
We figure we need to speak to a solicitor and get our ducks in a row, but we also thought it couldn't hurt to ask around here first.
Thanks in advance for any relevant experience you're able to share!