Requirements for a visa (for family members of EU citizen)

For a visa to be issued on the basis of Directive 2004/38/EC, only the following requirements need to be satisfied:

  1. The visa applicant is a direct “family member” of an EU citizen and has proof  (marriage or birth certificate or some combination) of the relationship)
  2. The visa applicant will be travelling with, or joining, the EU citizen for a visit or permanent move to an EU member state.  (If they are going to the “home” country of the EU citizen, then there can be a requirement that the EU citizen had previously lived/worked in a different member state)
  3. All travellers require a passport (or a national ID card for the EU citizen)

These are the legal requirements for all of the EU/EEA member states, including all Schengen members, the UK, Ireland, Romania and Bulgaria.  They also apply for Switzerland

If the family member has a “Residence Card for a family member of an EU citizen”, then they do not require a visa.  (Only the UK does not implement this).

Where a visa is required, “Member States shall grant such persons every facility to obtain the necessary visas. Such visas shall be issued free of charge, as soon as possible and on the basis of an accelerated procedure.

There is no legal requirement that:

  • The EU citizen is already (or will be) living or working in a different EU member state
  • The non-EU family member holds a specific immigration visa or status. It is fine for them to have a nationally issued visa or a student visa or a visitor’s visa or even implied status
  • The family member apply in their country of origin
  • The family member resides or previously resided in the EU/EEA  (This older requirement of some member states was overturned in several ECJ cases, especially Metock)

There is also no legal requirement that you submit:

  • bank statements
  • pay slips
  • letters from your present or future employer or school
  • letters of reference
  • proof that you will return at the end of the trip
  • airline tickets
  • confirmed hotel bookings
  • references or guarantees from people in the destination country

Please contact the European Commission’s free Solvit service if you have any problems or are required to provide these things.  If they can not help, you can easily make a complaint directly to the European Commission.

In the unlikely event visa application is rejected, there must be a detailed explanation given about the reasons for the rejection, and there is an clear appeal process that you will be told about.   The only four grounds for rejecting a visa application are:

  1. public health (i.e. a serious contagious disease)
  2. national security
  3. (big) public policy
  4. the marriage was done solely for getting the visa
They can not reject an application because you did not provide, e.g., a bank statement or hotel reservations.

There is a core definition under Article 2 of “family member“, which includes spouses, descendents (of EU and of non-EU partner) who are dependent or under 21, and dependent ascendants (again of either the EU or non-EU family member). This includes civil partnerships, if the visa-issuing country recognizes these relationships. People in this category people have the simple life because they have easily documented relationships. They can plonk down their certificate (wedding or birth), and must be issued the visa quickly.

The more broad definition under Article 3 is of “Beneficiaries“. While these people may be granted the visa facilities described in this article, it is unclear if they are legally entitled to all provisions described.

Once you are in your host member state and you stay for longer than 3 months, at that point your host can require you to get a Residence Card and provide evidence that the EU citizen is working or otherwise exercising treaty rights.

Of related interest: No visa but still want to travel?

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  • Jose  On May 21, 2007 at 09:51

    I am spanish, and my wife is russian, we both live in Spain. She has a Residence Card of Family Member of a EU citizen (as she is my wife).

    We planned to go to London for a weekend, and we surprisingly find that she needs a visa or a “Family Permit”, issued by the British Consulate in Madrid.

    In the Consulate, they require the following documents, towards processing the application:

    • Your passport
    • 2 recent passport-size colour photos on a white background
    • Your valid residence permit
    • A copy of the EEA national’s passport or national identity document. If the EEA national is British, please bring evidence that he or she has worked outside the UK within the EU.
    • Your full marriage certificate OR your Civil Partnership registration document OR your common-law spouse registration document OR birth certificate if the EEA national is not the spouse or civil partner. If it is not British or Spanish it must be legalised for use in Spain. We cannot accept the Spanish Libro de Familia
    • You and the EEA national’s up-to-date Vida Laboral.
    • You and the EEA national’s pay slips from the last 3 months
    • You and the EEA national’s bank statements from the last 3 months
    • Proof of your accommodation in the UK, including cost (for example, hotel reservation).

    I am totally in shock, she should never need to ask for a visa or family permit, as she has a residence card issued by the spanish authorities, but moreon, I should give them my payslips, information from my bank accounts, accomodation, so on..!!!

    I already called to the SOLVIT center, sent a complain to the European Commission, but nothing.. No help.

    Ridiculous. Any suggestions?

  • Bartek  On September 18, 2008 at 16:57

    The same situation is in Poland. I think, there should be some possibility to enforce this ridiculous island to obey the law. Or let them leave the EU.

  • Prawo  On November 5, 2008 at 22:14

    If you manage to get in the plain, once at the airport they will let you in without the visa.
    However it cost me 2 hours at a London airport.

  • Charles4u  On November 21, 2008 at 01:38

    But the fact remains, Why are they asking for family members of an EU citizen to apply for a visa b4 going to UK…all other EU countries don/t know longer request for visa if holding this type of permit which identifies one is a family member of an EU citizen..why the risk and delays at airport?

    It is totally ridiculous and unlawfull

  • Yannis  On March 17, 2009 at 08:46

    I am Greek National and my wife is Russian, we both live in the UK. She has a Residence Card of Family Member of a EU citizen (as she is my wife). We are planning to visit France in June and the French consulate advised us that she needs to apply for a Shegen Visa.

    Email reply from the French Consulate in London:

    “Please note that, to this day, we have not received any new instructions from the French Authorities regarding the application of the EU Directive 2004/38/EC. I therefore wish to inform you that family members of EU Nationals, resident in the UK, still require a visa to travel to France.”

    That is in clear breach of the EU Directive 2004/38/EU.

    It is totally ridiculous and unlawfull.

    • Anonymous  On October 18, 2011 at 18:32

      My husband is EU national and I have my PI passport with EEA family member attached in my passport, we both lived in the UK. Last Nov2009 we went to France for a holiday and they allow me to enter France without any hasstle, so I am sure if you have a EU family member travelling with you everything will be fine.

  • Francesco  On March 19, 2009 at 17:48

    I am Italian and I live in the UK with my partner who is from Mauritius and he has a Mauritian Passport with a “residence card of a family member of an EEU national” permit on it ( thats because of our relationship). We are going on a cruise in May between Italy, Spain, Portugal and France. We have done it 3 times before without any problems with the Schengen Visa. Now the italian embassy has refuse to give us a schengen visa, saying that we dont need one to travel within EU countries. I am concerned because on all our recent travel we have always been asked for a Schengen Visa. Are we at any risks?
    Thank you for your help.

    • eumovement  On March 19, 2009 at 20:44

      Did they write that you did not need a visa? If so I would also take the letter.

  • Yannis  On March 19, 2009 at 23:29

    Not very clear but…….It appears that Italy is implimenting the Article 5(2) of the Directive 2004/38/EC but it is not not very clear if you read the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs page:

    Non-aliens are nationals of all the countries of the European Union and the European Economic Area: Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Lichtenstein, Luxembourg, The Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom Cyprus, Czech Republic, Bulgaria, Estonia, Croatia, Latvia, Lithuania, Malta, Hungary, Poland, Romania, Slovakia and Slovenia.

    Aliens are nationals of any other State.

    Entry of aliens into Italy

    c. are in possession of documents substantiating the purpose and the conditions of the planned visit and have sufficient means of support, both for the period of the planned visit and to return to their country of origin (or to travel in transit to a Third State). An alien who already holds a residence permit issued by one of the Contracting Parties is exempted from this requirement.

    The United Kingdom is Non Allien country therefore is one of the Contracting Parties and possetion of a UK Resident Card (Document) is exempt you from the visa requirement!

    I am petitioning the EU Parliament against the French Goverment for not implimenting the Article 5(2) of the Directive 2004/38/EC and will take them to the Court of Justice for that matter.

    • mohamed  On May 15, 2009 at 23:08


      As far as I could find here:

      They do endors the Directive 2004/38/EC.
      But just in case I send them a letter (as I would not like to hear that my wife needs a visa after driving 280 miles to the Euro tunnel)

      They replied the following:
      Dear Sir,

      I refer to your letter of the 22nd of April in which you question the implementation of the Directive 2004/38/EC by the French Authorities.

      I can confirm that if your spouse holds a British resident permit with the endorsement ‘Family member of an EEA national’ and travels with you, she does not need a visa to travel to France.

      Yours faithfully,
      Patrick Poinsot
      Deputy Consul.

      It might be a good idea to send a letter to the French Embassy and ask them the same question I did. Like that you have proof from the French Authorities, if you would run into some trouble at the border!

  • R Sandhu  On March 26, 2009 at 20:45

    My wife is a British citizen and we have been living together in the U.K for over 30 years. I hold an Indian passport which, has a residence permit for indefinite leave to remain with no time limit on my stay in the U.K. My wife will be going to Italy on 05/05/2009 to 11/05/2009 for a friends wedding and I will be joining her with my British son on 08/05/2009 to 10/05/2009, the wedding is on 09/05/2009. Will I require a visa to visit Italy?

  • still  On March 28, 2009 at 04:02

    yes you will need a visa.

    indefinite leave to remain holders will need a visa and is free of charge,

    while holders of RESIDENT CARD OF EU FAMILY MEMBER STAMP in thier passport will not require a visa

  • Frank  On March 28, 2009 at 15:43

    My 4-year old daughter has a UK residency permit and proof of being a family member of EU national (I’m Dutch) in her pasport. We have booked a short holiday in Spain next week, but have not arranged a Schengen Visas for her; assuming Directive 2004/38/EC would apply.

    Can anyone please inform me if this will give problems at the airport in the UK or upon arrival in Spain? … Thanks in advance.

    • eumovement  On March 29, 2009 at 06:35

      My 4-year old daughter has a UK residency permit and proof of being a family member of EU national (I’m Dutch) in her pasport. We have booked a short holiday in Spain next week, but have not arranged a Schengen Visas for her; assuming Directive 2004/38/EC would apply.

      What Residency Permit does she have? What is her citizenship? If it is a “Residence Card for a family of an EU citizen”, it will be easier for you.

      You should also take a copy of her birth or adoption certificate with you.

      You should also print and take a copy of Directive 2004/38/EC. And a copy of Right of Union citizens and their family members to move and reside freely within the Union: Guide on how to get the best out of Directive 2004/38/EC from Finally I would ensure you have the normal and emergency consular services telephone number for the Netherlands embassy in Madrid.

      If you have any problems, be patient, keep referring to the law, make clear you will escalate with the netherlands embassy and the EU if there is a problem, and stand your ground.

  • Anonymous  On March 29, 2009 at 10:16

    Hi there.

    I have been trying to find out a simple answer for what is essentially a basic question.

    Firstly a bit of background: I am a UK citizen (born, raised, studied and worked in the UK until I was 36) and have lived in Indonesia for 3 1/2 years. I have been married (church wedding – haven’t legalised it yet due to corrupt local officials trying to charge us 10x the usual fee!) to my Indonesian wife for 3 of those 3 2/2 years. We have an official signed and stamped document from the church which verifies the wedding ceremony and my family can verify the wedding took place (my parents and brother flew from England to attend).

    My question is, if/when we legalise our marriage, what kind of visa can my wife get to come with me on holiday to the UK? The only visa I can see available is one which says that I must be resident IN the UK. However, I am not resident IN the UK – I’m an expat living in Indonesia – and we both just want to go there for a two week holiday. Does this kind of visa exist? Or, would we be better off keeping our marriage ‘off the books’, as it were, so that she can apply as a ‘general visitor’ whenever we want to go to the UK for a holiday?

    I’m really confused about what we should do and don’t have the kind of legal mind that can sift through all the nomenclature that requires a law degree to understand.

    Thanks a lot in advance for any answers/advice…

  • still  On March 29, 2009 at 21:39

    for you as a british citizen:

    You will need a visa to come to the United Kingdom if you plan to stay longer than 6 months

    You do not need a visa to come to the United Kingdom if you plan to visit for less than 6 months

    For your wife:

    Requirements for leave to enter as a general visitor

    40. For the purposes of paragraphs 41-46 a general visitor includes a person living and working outside the United Kingdom who comes to the United Kingdom as a tourist. A person seeking leave to enter the United Kingdom as a Business Visitor, which includes Academic Visitors, must meet the requirements of paragraph 46G. A person seeking entry as a Sports Visitor must meet the requirements of paragraph 46M.
    A person seeking entry as an Entertainer Visitor must meet the requirements of paragraph 46S.
    A visitor seeking leave to enter for the purposes of marriage must meet the requirements of paragraph 56D.

    41. The requirements to be met by a person seeking leave to enter the United Kingdom as a general visitor are that he:

    (i) is genuinely seeking entry as a general visitor for a limited period as stated by him, not exceeding 6 months; and

    (ii) intends to leave the United Kingdom at the end of the period of the visit as stated by him; and

    (iii) does not intend to take employment in the United Kingdom; and

    (iv) does not intend to produce goods or provide services within the United Kingdom, including the selling of goods or services direct to members of the public; and

    (v) does not intend to undertake a course of study; and

    (vi) will maintain and accommodate himself and any dependants adequately out of resources available to him without recourse to public funds or taking employment; or will, with any dependants, be maintained and accommodated adequately by relatives or friends; and

    (vii) can meet the cost of the return or onward journey.; and

    (viii) is not a child under the age of 18.

    (ix) does not intend to do any of the activities provided for in paragraphs 46G (iii), 46M (iii) or 46S (iii);

    (x) does not, during his visit, intend to marry or form a civil partnership, or to give notice of marriage or civil partnership; and

    (xi) does not intend to receive private medical treatment during his visit; and

    (xii) is not in transit to a country outside the common travel area.

    Leave to enter as a general visitor

    42. A person seeking leave to enter to the United Kingdom as a general visitor may be admitted for a period not exceeding 6 months, subject to a condition prohibiting employment, provided the Immigration Officer is satisfied that each of the requirements of paragraph 41 is met.
    Refusal of leave to enter as a general visitor

    43. Leave to enter as a general visitor is to be refused if the Immigration Officer is not satisfied that each of the requirements of paragraph 41 is met.

    contact this website below for more details

  • Frank  On March 30, 2009 at 21:31

    Thank you eumovement, for your swift reply regarding number 12 above. Some more detail, and the surprising reaction from the Spanish Consulate in Manchester.

    Original message:
    “My 4-year old daughter has a UK residency permit and proof of being a family member of EU national (I’m Dutch) in her passport. We have booked a short holiday in Spain next week, but have not arranged a Schengen Visas for her; assuming Directive 2004/38/EC would apply”.

    What Residency Permit does she have? RESIDENCE CARD OF A FAMILY MEMBER OF AN EEA NATIONAL What is her citizenship? SOUTH AFRICAN If it is a “Residence Card for a family of an EU citizen” IS EEA NATIONAL AND EU CITIZEN IDENTICAL?, it will be easier for you.

    Comment by eumovement — March 29, 2009 @ 6:35 am

    This is the surprising reaction from the Spanish Consulate in Manchester:

    “We are sorry we are unable to assist you this time as regrettably, the EEA Directive is not applicable in Spain. We confirm she requires a Schengen Visa in order to travel to Spain.”

    The French Embassy writes on their website:

    “The foreign spouse of a EU national (except French national) may enter France without visa if they are holding: a valid travel document;
    a valid UK residence permit with the endorsement “family member of EEA national”; and if they are meeting up or travelling with the EU national.

    But an exemption is published straight after that: “Note that children and parents of EU Nationals still require visas to travel to France.”

    It does seem that the course of action suggested for both Spain and France(e.g. copy of birth certificate and directive) is not without risks!

  • Beccy  On April 2, 2009 at 12:49

    My husband, older children and I are all EU citizens so can visit the UK without a visa. Our baby’s application for Irish citizenship won’t have been processed by the time we visit the UK from 18 June to 8 July so he will have to travel on his South African passport. Does he need a visa to enter the UK, and if so, which one? Family visitor and General Visitor ones cost a lot, but I see the “dependent of an EEA citizen” visa is free. We are visiting the UK to see relatives, although due to UK people have small homes, and us being a 5 member family, we will be staying in rented accommodation rather than with our family members.

  • Yannis  On April 6, 2009 at 18:41


    Thank you for pointing out the note in the web site…….I was very busy to visit the site lately.

    No official responce to my complaint yet……..LOL

    Never mind my letters to EU Parliament, Consulate, French minister etc seems to have done the Job.

  • Yannis  On April 10, 2009 at 15:29

    An Update regarding my petition to the EU parliament against the French Authorities.

    On the 18 March 2009 I made a Petition to the EU parliament against the French Authorities and today I received a letter advising me that it has been registered as Petition No 0390-09.

    The committee on Petitions will have to make a decision to admit my petition or not and then if it is accepted will examine it in an open meeting.

    Note from the letter: May I draw your attention to the fact that the procedure for examination of a petition may be fairly lengthy because has to be translated into all official languages of the EU and then examined by the Committee on petitions.

    In other words I probably will never hear from them….or after a few years.

    Any how my personal case against the French Consulate has been resolved… Frank mentioned above but I will continue the petitions because of the exception to the children and dependent family members, which is against the Directive.

    I am writing to the Secretariat of Petitions and I will include the Spanish authorities for non compliance, as I read above.

    Anybody else knows any other Countries which they do not implement correctly or not at all the Directive and article 5(2), please let me know on here.


  • Nat  On April 13, 2009 at 22:50

    I hold a residence card of as family member of EEA national. My partner is Polish and I am from Colombia. we are planing a week trip to France. As far as I understand under the Directive 2004/38/EC I do not need visa to enter France. But then in their website they state that the marriage certificate or proof of the civil partnership may be requested. I am not married, so I do not have any means to proof my relationship.

    Would be gratefuld if someone could clarify this point o knows how french authorities are applying the Directive, for non married couples travelling together. Thanks

  • Maoz  On April 14, 2009 at 09:49

    Hi everybody!
    I am Russian and my husband is an EU citizen. Submitting the online application for a UK visitors visa i was told that the visa fee will be 60 pounds! Shouldnt it be free as all other EU countries dont charge EU family members for visas???

    • eumovement  On April 15, 2009 at 08:24

      It should be free if you will be travelling with your husband and he is not british and residing in the UK.

  • Yannis  On April 15, 2009 at 08:57

    You should apply as an EEA family member form EEA2 and should be FREE.

    Click to access guide_2004_38_ec_en.pdf

  • mido  On April 18, 2009 at 22:02

    please i need some help, i have a resident card in uk as a family member of EEA national exactly my wife is spanish, we live in uk, do i need a visa to go to spain?
    For those who are like me and want to go to france is they travelling with or to join the EEA national ( husband or wife) they dont need a visa to get there, this is the new french regulation from 20/03/2009.

    many thanks

    • eumovement  On April 20, 2009 at 06:28

      Do you have a more specific reference to the new French regulation?

  • halx  On April 24, 2009 at 12:05

    I suppose what mido actually means is that the webpage of the French embassy in London has been updated just recently to reflect the current opinion of their MFA.

  • Janine  On May 3, 2009 at 14:01

    I am a UK national and my husband is Nepalese. Is he still required to apply for a Schengen Visa? I have read conflicting information on a number of websites and often only receive automated response to emails. Is this website an official visa information website?

    • eumovement  On May 4, 2009 at 20:37

      You do not say where you are living and where you are going. If you are both in the Uk, then he will need a visa but it should be issued easily quickly and free.

  • Maga  On May 7, 2009 at 19:24

    I am Polish and my husband Iranian. He has residency permit in the UK for the next 3 years because of his studies. He has no endorsment or residency card for family members of EU nations. In the meantime we got marrird and would like to travel in summer in France. Does my husband need a Schengen Visa to enter France even if we are travelling together and have our marriage certificate?

  • Manos  On May 10, 2009 at 10:32


    I am from Greece married to a non-EEA and we currently live in Ireland. She has applied for a resident card but decision is pending.

    We plan to go to Greece for summer vacations. For this my wife will need a visa. We called the Greek embassy here in Dublin asking for information and we were told that we need to provide several documents (tickets, accommodation, travel insurance and others). It is well known that such documents shouldn’t be required. They were not required in our previous visa applications, it is mentioned in this web site, but also in the citizen’s guide that: “Your family members cannot be asked to present documents such as travel tickets, employment certificate, pay slips, bank statements, proof of accommodation and means of subsistence or a medical certificate.”

    However I noticed that in legal documents (directive 2004/58/EC), no such details are given. It is only mentioned that (article 5) “…Member States shall grant such persons every facility to obtain the necessary visas. Such visas shall be issued free of charge as soon as possible and on the basis of an accelerated procedure.”

    I would say that this is open to a lot of interpretation (being fast doesn’t mean we shouldn’t provide ALL the documents that the embassy requests).

    For this I am looking for a legal document clarifying this point (i.e. which documents are required, which are not). Anybody who knows such details please forward me a link.

    I plan to show it to them hoping that it might change their mind. I would prefer to take this step first before I contact solvit as solvit will probably need much more time.

    Thanks in advance

    • Yannis  On May 20, 2009 at 09:21


      Obviously your wife applied for a visa under the Directive 2004/38/EC and got a clearance Visa to join you. Now you have applied for a Resident Card but that will take more than 6 months to be issued…… despite the limitations of time in the Directive. Our Resident Card took 7 months to be issued and after a lot of daily chasing here in the UK.

      I am sure that you have a copy of your Original Marriage certificate translated and notarised. All you then need is to complete the Schegen Visa application at the Consulate, show them your above documents (make photocopies for them to avoid hassle).
      That is al you need and is issued for Free.

      Unfortunately our co-patriots don’t change their stupid attitudes. At the time the consulate was telling me a lot of rubbish and that my wife had to pay normal fees etc. I had to call the Foreign Office in Athens about it and then everything changed. Next day I had a phone call to visit the consulate, faxed the documents and later in the day I went to the consulate, they checked the Originals, and my wife signed the application in their present and she was issued the Schegen Visa in 30 minutes for 3 months and not 20 days that we applied for!

      Here is a copy of the Presidential Degree…….. in English and I hope it will help you.
      Unfortunately the link I have to the original Greek language one doesn’t work and luckily I have made a print of it but can’t post it here.

      Click to access Nomos3386_en.pdf

      Read this too:

      Text of the presidential decree:
      Freedom of movement and residence of the citizens of the European Union and their families in the Greek territory.
      Government Gazette 135/21-6-2007

      Don’t hesitate to give them hassle, as they never update or read any new instructions or laws (I have in print also the Foreign office instructions on immigration under the new Law, which they claimed were never received or advised…. and they only do what they think.

      Actually the immigation police is Corfu (Kerkyra) and in Kos…… know the rules better than our Greek Consulates!

      Good luck and have a nice holiday in Greece.


  • David Bodycombe  On May 17, 2009 at 22:01

    I am a UK citizen and my wife is from the Philippines. We wish to travel to France.

    The French embassy website is clear that no visa is necessary if we are travelling together and the spouse of an EU national has “Family member of EEA national” stamped on a UK residence permit.

    My wife is resident with me in the UK. She does not have a UK residence permit – we do not wish to wait 6 months to get one. However, she does have a current two-year UK visa in her passport which is stamped with “Spouse of (my name)”.

    Therefore, can we travel together to France without a visa, under Directive 2004/38/EC?

    Many thanks in advance,


    • eumovement  On May 20, 2009 at 07:15

      She is in the UK on a Spouse visa and so does not have a Residence Card indicating “family member of an EEA national”. So she will need a visa.

      • David Bodycombe  On May 20, 2009 at 11:00

        Thanks very much for the reply. I find it annoying that there’s such a long wait for a residence card.


  • noble  On June 3, 2009 at 18:32

    I just came back from france with my husband. I am spouse of british citizen with settlement visa in the united kingdom. I was allowed entry without visa and my passport was not stamped in france.

    Don’t forget to take your marriage certificate as a proof of relationship. there shouldn’t be any problem to visit france without a visa with eu spouse.

    • Yannis  On August 26, 2009 at 11:35

      May I please ask you to clarify what type of settlement visa in the UK you have in your passport?

      Do you have an FLR or an ILR or a Resident Card under the Directive 2004/38/EU?

      According to the French consulate site in London if you have the FLR or ILR you still need to apply for a Schegen Visa, which is issued for Free.

      But if you have a Resident Card which states ” Family Member of an EEA National” then you don’t need to have a Schegen Visa to enter France!

      I can only guess that you have been lucky to meet some ignorant or lazy French immigration officer….

    • Yannis  On August 27, 2009 at 10:03

      Can you please clarify to me what type of settlement visa you have in the UK and where in France did you enter?

      Do you have FLR or ILR or an UK Resident Card under the directive, which states “Family member of an EEA citizen”?

      According to the French consulate site in London you do need to have a Schegen Visa and my guess is that you found a lazy or ignorant immigration officer when entering France.

      My wife has a UK resident Card and when last June visited France in Nice…. the officer didn’t know the EU directive regulations and spent sometime in his computer before deciding that she is free to enter…. but insisted stamping the passport despite me pointing out to him the regulation that he doesn’t have to do it!

      I think the Immigration French Officer acted illegally and against the current French and EU regulations…. opening a new can of worms.!


  • Ania  On June 8, 2009 at 21:39

    I am a polish national working and living with my non EU husband in the UK for two years, he is still waiting for his residence card for 10 months now, well God only knows when that residence card would come!! unbelievable British Home Office. The question now is will my husband able to apply for schengen visa without any valid proof of UK residence in his new passport???? We contacted the Polish Consulate who insisted that he has to wait to get his Residence Card in order to apply for a schengen one…we contacted the German who also answered that he has to got a residence permit in order to apply EVEN for EU spouses…
    I personally can NOT believe what is going on…guys someone tell me Were they right??? So my husband can not get a schengen visa as he is still waiting for his RC. Has anybody been in that situation?

    • Yannis  On August 26, 2009 at 10:45


      I am sorry to hear about your trouble with the UKBorder Agency, regarding your husband’s Resident Card and I only today received notification of your post.

      In our case it took 7+ months before the UKborder Agency issued my wife’s RC and after me pestering them daily by email…… at: Liverpool Center

      and also at their Northwest Customer service:

      Once you receive the Resident Card you do not need a Schegen Visa to travel to most EEA countries. It appears only Spain and Portugal are the difficult ones who require a Schegen Visa…. but soon they will also implement the EU directive like most other EU countries.

      Applying to the French Consulate for a schegen visa is very easy but difficult to get an appointment on line and they do issue visas for up to 5 years to FLR and ILR holders
      wife/husband of a UK citizen.

  • noras  On June 9, 2009 at 11:25

    Hi all,

    I am Iranian, and I have been living with my partner who is a French national since 2005 in UK, we have all the documents proofing that we are in a relationship akin to marriage and now we are actually preparing our wedding. I am in UK under tier1- post study work permit which will be expired in 2 months time ( 14 Aug 2009). I would like to travel to France to attend a friends wedding in which both me and my partner asked to be witness. From the website of the French embassy it seems that I can not apply for a short stay schengen visa as my UK residency has not 3 months beyond the demand for schengen visa. On the other hand to get the EU faimily permit takes more than 6 months (according to the UK border agency website). But from this website and other websites it seems that I can travel without the visa! is it true? and if not and I need a visa what is that visa called?

  • David Bodycombe  On June 16, 2009 at 11:34

    How long should it take the French embassy to supply a spouse visa? At interview, my non-EU wife was told it could take up to a month. I had assumed it would only be a few days? Are there any rules on this?

  • belinda kenney  On July 1, 2009 at 10:58

    I am a South African citizen married to an Italian (EU citizen), I hold a schengen residence permit and I reside in Italy. I want to visit a friend in the United Kingdom and have since been told that as of July 2009 us South African passport holders have to apply for a visa to enter the United Kingdom. However although I still hold a South African passport, I am no longer living in South Africa and hold a permit to stay in Italy. Do I still need to have a visa to enter the United Kingdom?

  • michael ediale  On July 29, 2009 at 22:10

    Hi, I am a Nigeria citizen married to a British citizen in Ireland, I have an Irish residence permit (stamp 4eufam). I wanted to travel to UK with my wife and child to visit her family, but we were told I needed a EEA family permit before I can travel with them.

    Please, can I know if the information was right or not? We have travelled together to some EU countries without a visa, so I find it very hard to believe this. PLEASE DO I ACTUALLY NEED A PERMIT TO TRAVEL WITH MY BRITISH CITIZEN WIFE TO VISIT U.K? THANK YOU.

    • Beccy  On August 26, 2009 at 09:27

      Sadly I think this is the case. Certainly I needed a EEA visa for my baby son (South African citizen) to visit the UK with his EU citizen family members. At least the EEA family permit is free, unlike the normal UK visa.

  • sohail  On August 27, 2009 at 17:15

    Hi I am pakistani citizen living my Uk citizen wife in Ireland, and having a stamp 4 eufam, I wanted to visit UK just on short term basis with my wife, she is living here in Ireland for 1 year and working as well,
    First question 1)some body told me that you have to apply EU family permit visa for uk that would be valid for 6 month. My question is that after the expiry of this EU family permit, Again I have to apply this permit from dublin for six month ?

    2) My wife being as British citizen exercising her EU rights in Ireland, Can she call her mother which is Non EU citizen Under Family member category ?

    3) Being as a spouse of British citizen in possesion of EU fam visa, Can I call my brother Under EU family member here in Ireland.

    Thanks very much

  • MrsVladz  On September 29, 2009 at 07:41

    I am a British National living in the UK, my Husband is a Moldovan National living in Spain. He has the Non-EU Family Member Residence Card, issued in Spain. I believe we have a 50/50 chance of him being able to enter the UK without a Visa/Family Permit if we travel together armed with the relevant documents. It appears to me that it comes down to the individual Immigration Officer & their knowledge of Directive 2004/38/EC as to whether entry will be permitted. What are the implications of refusal? Would it jeopardise future Visa/Permit applications?

    • eumovement  On September 30, 2009 at 15:57

      Have you been working in the EU (outside the UK) while married with him? If so it is possible.

      If you have been living the whole time in the UK, there is NO chance to use EU law for your husband’s entry in the UK.

      • MrsVladz  On September 30, 2009 at 17:04

        I’ve been living with him in Spain on & off since I was made redundant in the UK in April 09.

        I have Spanish Residency papers to prove I have been registered at his address since April 09.

        As for work – I was trying to find work as a self-employed Health and Safety Consultant in Spain – without success – but I have Sales Leaflets, business cards etc offering a safety inspection & report to persons who rent their properties to holidaymakers. Only 50 euros!! But nothing in the bank!

        Not sure it this would be sufficient evidence though.

      • eumovement  On September 30, 2009 at 17:56

        You need to be working in Spain, or self-employeed. Any job will do. You can work 1/2 time at McDonalds, or …

  • MrsVladz  On September 30, 2009 at 18:30

    I can prove I’ve been working – just can’t prove any wages! I think the Judge in Surinder Singh included “jobseeking” in his ruling – but I’m not convinced that would be enforced.

    I think we’ll try & wing it at the airport, if that fails we’ll go straight for a Settlement Visa – my main concern is that we don’t do anything that would give grounds for refusing the visa.

    We just want to get to the UK as quickly as possible & live a normal married life!

    • eumovement  On October 2, 2009 at 09:34

      If you can prove you have been recently working, for 3 to 6 months, in Spain, then I suspect you should be fine. You can also apply for an EEA family permit from the British embassy. It may be easier and less stress than travelling without a visa.

  • geoff  On November 2, 2009 at 14:21

    I’m a British citizen living in Turkey with a Turkish wife. So she is a “family member of an EEA national”. We want to visit friends and family in UK for ten days over Christmas and I know my wife needs a visa. But we are told we must pay £67 for a six month visa, even though the UK Border agency visa price list states “family member of an EEA national- free of charge”. So shouldn’t it be free?

    • eumovement  On November 2, 2009 at 14:29

      It would be free if you were going to any other EU member state. And it would also be free if you were working in another EU member state, and wanted to then visit or move back to your home country.

      Since you are living outside of the EU, EU law does not cover your wife’s entry into your own country (in this case the UK).

  • esam  On August 3, 2010 at 08:56

    I am british citizen living with my wife in uk and she has ILR last year went to czech repulic and issued visa at the airport.This year we came to Austeria via Zurich which at the Zurich airport they told us that my wife need visa and must get one from the Swiss embassy in Vienna.We went there they told us they donot issue visa and must go to Foreign office we went there they told us to go to the Interior office and they told us they also donot issue visas .We are going back next monday and we donot know what will happen.Pl advise.

  • Doug  On August 23, 2010 at 09:09

    I am a British citizen living in Singapore with my South African wife (both permanent residents). We have travelled to the UK together many times over the past 35 years to visit our family. S.A. citizens now require a visa to enter the UK but my wife’s visa application for a family visit whilst travelling with me was rejected. The decision by the ECO acknowleged that we were travelling together,noted that she had visited the UK on previous occasions, but as my wife did not provide details of “financial circumstances” they could not access her ability to meet the costs of the proposed visit. The duration of stay was 7 days.
    Proof of air travel was provided, details of family we intended to visit was provided aslo.
    It appears to me that they ignore the fact that you are travellling together and insist on bank statements etc. from the applicant.
    I am completely speachless at the decision as the circumstances of this visit is exactly the same as our many other visits in the past 35 years, i.e. a short stay to visit family.

    • eumovement  On September 20, 2010 at 22:21

      Most of what is on this web site does not apply to you because you are traveling to your “home” country (the UK) from outside the EU. The Home Office does not have to treat you as nicely as they have to treat citizens from other EU countries. That said, i would suggest you appeal. Or go on vacation to any other EU countries, in which case you and your spouse are covered by these EU free movement rules.

  • laura  On September 20, 2010 at 19:04

    Hi everyone, I wonder if you can help me.

    I am a British national living and working in Spain. I live with my husband who is Mexican. We are recently married and so are still waiting for his appointment to apply for the “family member of a EU national” card. We hope to travel together to the UK in a few weeks for 2 days to attend a family member´s wedding and then return to Spain.

    I want to know if he is going to have any problems getting into the UK given that he doesn´t yet have his “family member of a EU national” card. Do we need to apply for a visa? And if so, where do we need to apply for it? Or is it enough to take our marriage certificate and return flight ticket?

    Many thanks in advance for any help you can offer me!

    • eumovement  On September 20, 2010 at 22:19

      You need to apply at the British embassy. He will be applying for an “EEA family permit”. You will need to show your marriage certificate, your passport, his passport, and proof that you (the UK citizen) are working in Spain (aka. “exercising your treaty rights”). You will not need to show a return flight ticket.

      You do not need to answer any of the questions about how much money you make. Totally irrelevant to the decision.

      • laura  On September 25, 2010 at 12:19

        Thank you so very much for your reply.

        I have been yesterday to the British Embassy and they were very unhelpful. From the little information I could get out of them, I figure it is quite a lengthy process to get the EEA family permit, is this correct? We were really hoping to go to the UK in two weeks time. Would it be possible to enter the UK following your advice in this post? Or would it be impossible given that we are trying to enter into my home country?

        Thanks again for your help.

      • eumovement  On September 25, 2010 at 13:31

        If you (the UK EU citizen) are working in Spain, then it should be very easy to get the EEA family permit. But I don’t think you need it. As far as I know, Mexicans do not require a visa to enter the UK. Just go and visit.

        If he wants to work in the UK, or you are planning to move back, you should apply for an EEA family permit. You can do it through the embassy.

        If I were you, I would carry your marriage certificate and proof that you are working in Spain.

      • laura  On October 19, 2010 at 12:20


        I just wanted to write to say thank you ever so much for your website and for the advice you have given me. We have just gotten back from our visit to the UK and although the border guards were quite apprehensive, after 10 minutes at the desk and showing our marriage certificate, my work contract and our return tickets (I know they are not supposed to be allowed to ask for this!) they let us through. I had brought with me a print out of your website so I knew exactly what I was talking about. Thank you for your help and keep up the good work!!


  • Amu  On October 3, 2010 at 19:36

    Hi All,

    I wonder if you could clarify the following. I am married to a British Citizen and have a spouse visa (2 years leave to remain). I have recently upgraded it to Biometric Residence Permit card.
    I am travelling to Prague for conference next month and the Czech website states that spouse of the EU citizen is visa free on the condition that he/she has a UK residence permit [which I have]and of the use of the right of free movement of the EEA national (e.g. a registration certificate)[I don’t have]. I have 2 questions:

    1. If I am spouse of the UK citizen and live in the UK do I need to have a registration certificate?
    2. Do I need a visa for short term travel to Czech?

    • eumovement  On October 19, 2010 at 21:07

      You do not have the Residence Card “as the family of an EEA citizen” that allows visa free travel in Europe.

      Depending on which country you come from, you may need a visa. If you are traveling with your European spouse, then the European rules apply.

  • Claudia iordache  On November 4, 2010 at 18:23


    i am from Romania.My husband is from Pakistan.currently we are living in husband have Romanian EU family member residence card. we want to travel Norway together. Did my husband need visa to travel with me or he can travel on this Eu family member residence card with me?
    thank you.

  • sania  On November 17, 2010 at 00:23

    hi i am married to brtish citizen and we both are living in pakistan for last 14 months our marrifage is registerd i want to know is under freedom of movement right can i vist with my eu national british wife can i visit any eu country for 30 days or she needs to be living there before we can visit that country

    • eumovement  On November 19, 2010 at 17:22

      You are married to a British citizen. So you can travel with them to any EU country (but not the UK!) for up to 90 days with minimum of hassle. So France/Germany/Italy/… should all be easy.

  • adil  On March 10, 2011 at 00:01

    I don’t have any legal status in Canada. My spouse is EEA citizen. can we apply for EEA family permit from canada or i have to go back to my country to apply. is there any requirement that Its necessary for an applicant to be lawfully or normally resident in the country to apply? Please refer me some law , guide or court ruling so i can attach this to my application. I asked this question to worldbridge and was told I cannot apply from Canada lacking legal status.
    Please help.

    • eumovement  On April 26, 2011 at 17:29

      Many embassies “require” you to show that you are legally in the country when applying for a visa. But that is not technically required by European law, and they are not right in saying that.

      I suggest you ignore world bridge and just apply for the visa. Explain in a cover letter that you are married to an EEA citizen, and so are covered by the free movement Directive 2004/38/EC. Remind them that if you are turned down for the visa, that they are required to give you a complete reason in writing, and that you will appeal and approach the European Commission. You may have to push but should get it in the end. I assume you are going to the UK if you are applying for an “EEA Family Permit”.

      Post to for more discussion.

  • Anonymous  On July 19, 2011 at 05:53

    I have a British/europeean union passport, my wife is Australian and has an Australian passport and does not have a British passport or British residency. We have been married 27 years. I want to go to italy for 12 months. Does she have to get a visa or is there a way she can come with me because i have the e/u passport. We currently live in Australia and i am also a resident of Australia. Does anyone know what to do?

    • EUmovement  On July 19, 2011 at 12:50

      Should be very straight forward. You both get on a plane and arrive. What will you (EU citizen) be doing? Does your wife want to work?

  • sara  On July 21, 2011 at 15:02

    I am a 23 years old Danish citizen and want to travel to UK just for few days before i start to college in Denmark. And my mum wants to come with me, but she is not a danish citizen. She holds the indefinite permant residence in Denmark ( + alien passport from Denmark). Does she need a visa to UK? and will she be alowed to get a visa to UK because her daugther is danish?

    Thank you very much

  • Macasr  On July 26, 2011 at 11:36


    I’m a UK passport holder and have lived in the UK all my life. My wife holds a Kazakhstan passport with Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK and has been resident here for the last 3 years. We are planning a 5 day trip to Italy in September. I’ve found contradictory advice on different websites and wondered if you could resolve my problem. Does my wife need an Italian Schengen visa for this short trip or can she travel with me as long as we carry a copy of our marriage certificate?

  • Anonymous  On August 1, 2011 at 09:44

    I am a portuguese national but my husband is an Indian. I am working in London and now I want to get my husband on immigrant visa to london. Could I know if it is posible and if so what are the reqauirements. Please advise

    • EUmovement  On August 4, 2011 at 13:35

      Basically the requirements on this page. You will also need to provide some proof that you are working in the UK. That is all. No need to show evidence of savings or any details of your living situation. Or of his current/future employer. He needs to apply for an EEA Family Permit.

  • Yordan  On August 19, 2011 at 08:24


    I am bulgarian national,my wife is ukranian.Both of us live and work in UK.She has residence card issued for 5 years(2 already passed).We are going to Bulgaria soon for vacation and from my bg embassy convience me that she needs visa.We were in Spain last year and there was no problem for it.But in the bulgarian embassy repeatedly saying ‘Bulgaria is not in Schenghen,she needs visa’…I know they are wrong,but can they cost me any problems at the airport in BG?Thanks.

    • EUmovement  On August 19, 2011 at 10:19

      Bulgaria is not part of Schengen. But that does not matter. If your wife has a UK issued Residence Card, she should be admitted with no further hassle. Note that you should definitely take your marriage certificate when you travel, and proof that you have been working in the UK (pay slips, or a confirmation letter from your employer).


    • irelandsreversediscrimination  On August 19, 2011 at 10:52

      to add to the earlier reply, If your Bulgarian Embassy or any Official try to tell you that EU law does not apply to Bulgarian Nationals returning to Bulgaria,
      this is wrong.

      As you live and work in the UK, you and your wife have full EU law privileges upon return to Bulgaria. such as visa free entry while holding UK Residence Card

      See ECJ Case Law “Surinder Singh”

      While this case was taken against the UK back in 1992, the result and judgement applies across the whole EU, and Bulgaria are legally bound to follow it

      This case confirmed an EU residence right for the spouse of a national who returns to his/her Member State of origin. This right of entry and residence arises from Union law and prevents a situation of reverse discrimination. This is important since a national could be deterred from leaving his/her country to pursue an activity in another Member State if his/her spouse and children would not be permitted to enter and reside in his/her Member State of origin afterwards

      read ECJ judgement here
      “The Queen v Immigration Appeal Tribunal and Surinder Singh, ex parte Secretary of State for Home Department, C-370/90, 7 July 1992”

  • Janine Reid  On August 19, 2011 at 10:32

    HI There

    I have an ‘Resident card of a family member of an EEA national’ in my South African passport (my husband is Irish). We live in the UK and have traveled to Spain, Greece and Cyprus with no need for an extra visa in last couple years. We are off to Portugal in Oct and just wanted to check they have the same EU visa regulations?

    Regards and thank you for your help in advance

    • EUmovement  On August 19, 2011 at 10:53

      Portugal is a member of the EU, so the same rules apply. As always it is worth travelling with your marriage certificate also.

  • tifftiff  On September 7, 2011 at 18:54

    CZECH REPUBLIC AND HUNGARY: Hi, I’m an Indonesian citizen with UK indefinite leave (permanent residence) to remain, married to British citizen and have a British son. My passport does NOT have the residence sticker of EU family member, as I got my UK permanent residence before I got married. I managed to enter the Czech republic last month without a Schengen visa, travelling with my husband and son. I had to show married certificate, son’s birth certificate stating me as his mother and they let me enter the country – the whole process took 5 minutes. However I noticed that they did not stamp my family’s UK passport nor my Indonesian passport.

    We travelled from Prague to Budapest, and flew back to London from Budapest. I thought this would not be a problem as I was already in Schengen area. However the Hungarian passport control in Budapest airport gave me a lot of hassle, as I did not have a Schengen visa and my passport was not stamped in Prague. They tried to hold me back, but our argument was (a) I’m travelling with my British family to get OUT of Schengen territory back to UK; (b) As I legally entered Schengen territory then I should be allow to legally exit it. However it did not help that my passport did not have an entry stamp. Eventually they let us go but it was quite stressful.

    So – if you plan to travel to more than one countries, I suggest you check the rules on both country as being able to enter Schengen easily does not guarantee you can get out easily. Also having an entry stamp will make exit easier.

  • Anonymous  On September 9, 2011 at 14:45

    Does one need to be present in the host state as a eu citizen for an entry visa to be granted to one’s 3rd country family member ?

    • EUmovement  On September 9, 2011 at 15:52

      No the EU citizen does not need to be already in the other country. Not at all.

      There is no legal requirement that:
      The EU citizen is already (or will be) living or working in a different EU member state

      So, for example, a UK citizen who has never left the UK and is married to a Chinese citizen. For a trip to Germany, the Chinese citizen is a family member of an EU citizen. The UK citizen is exercising their right to move freely, and the non-EU family member has a right to travel with them.

  • jing  On October 5, 2011 at 11:16

    we are booked for holiday in spain but my husband was refused from his visa application. i’m a british citizen while my husband is a filipino with indefinite uk resident holder but it does not state that his a spouse of an EU/EEA nationals in his UK resident permit. does he need a visa to enter in spain base on real decreto 240/2007? visa application for spain has a fee of £84.00(including mailing) why is not free compare to french embassy?

    • EUmovement  On October 6, 2011 at 05:19

      If they rejected the application, the should have provided written detailed reasons for the rejection. But if you are married and will be travelling together, then they pretty much must approve the application and it must be free. Contact Solvit for their help

  • Jacqueline Poole  On October 13, 2011 at 12:59

    My husband is a colombian national, who lives legally in spain with a family residence permit (he gained through our marriage). I am a british citizen who until 6 weeks ago lived in Spain with him (i now reside in UK). He has been told he needs a Marriage visa to join me in UK. Is this correct?

  • sean McCarthy  On October 14, 2011 at 23:57

    To understand the situation,you need to know the difference between a Domestic Residence Card and an EEU Residence Card.If your partner has a domestic issued card as per the immigration rules,then they need a visa.However if your partner has an EEU Family Residence Card issued under EU Directive 38 article10, then you don,t need a visa. It appears from your comments that you don’t understand and appreciate the difference between these two cards.Just remember,one is issued under domestic immigration rules and has no bearing on freedom of movement or Directive 38/10 and thereby is only of use entering and leaving the country that has issued it.

  • Iruma  On October 16, 2011 at 21:46

    hi, I am an Indonesian woman married with Italian man. I have (family) resident in Italy and living in Italy now. If I want to work in UK, do I need special visa? Because I want to apply to some works but I am not sure if I am eligible to work in UK.

    And if I want to go to UK for holiday, do I need visa too? Because he said he doesn’t need visa to go to UK and me as his wife shouldn’t need too, I just need to show my residential card with my passport or marriage certificate. But I am not very sure, I don’t want to be rejected in the airport there, so I ask here. Thanks a lot for the reply.

  • Dave  On October 20, 2011 at 15:03

    I am a British citizen, resident in Spain. My wife is Sudanese and resident in Sudan. How and where do I apply for a visa to get my wife to Spain? What kind of visa do we require? How long does it take?


  • Geoff  On October 20, 2011 at 17:07

    Firstly, congratulations; Behind every story here there is a great deal of stress, and this thread is so helpful.

    I am a British citizen, married to a Turkish national, and we are resident in Turkey. We want to travel over land to England for a visit of about one month, with about two weeks journey each way through EC countries and Switzerland; Greece, Italy, France, Germany, Austria, Belgium. What visa or visas does my wife need?

    • EUmovement  On October 20, 2011 at 22:15

      You are best off applying for a Schengen visa. If you are driving it is less essential because you should be able to get entry to each country on the basis of The visa would be free and according to the rules at

      UK is more difficult. Have you lived and worked with your spouse in another EU member state? If so entry to the UK is easy. If you have only lived in the UK and Turkey, then I am not sure exactly what you would need to do to enter the UK. Likely you would need a visitors visa. A fee must be paid.

      • Geoff  On October 21, 2011 at 11:03

        I have read the links that you provided, and as you say it appears that Schengen is the way to go; I don’t want to enter into disputes with border guards; I did that before, successfully, but wasted so much time and with so much stress and frustration.

        For UK, we have only lived together in Turkey, so we will enquire with the UK consulate here in Turkey.

        Many thanks for your help.

  • sean McCarthy  On October 21, 2011 at 23:29

    Carriers’ liability.

    This is an issue that I have not seen addressed in this forum,so now I will explain it as it’s being used by many Member States to enforce their unlawfull
    refusal to comply with EU law.All countrys have Carriers’ liability law under their
    domestic leglistation,this normally imposes fines on the carrier for landing any person on there country who do not have the entry requirements as per current leglistation.These requirements are issued to all carriers,so when you try to board your flight or boat,you are refused permission if you don’t have what the carrier has on his instructions from the country you wish to travel to.The reason for this ploy,is simple,the carrier has a full defence for refusing to carry you as he would be breaking that countrys laws if they carried you and would be subject to a very large fine.So in effect the carrier is left to enforce this unlawfull policy. I have been the victim of this scam many times and have been unable to sue the carrier as they had a valid defence.So I had to sue the Governements in question under EU law and not Domestic Law.

    The UK is currently the only country I know of who still refuses to accept the EU Family Residence card and demands a landing card-stamp passport and have EU family permit issued by the British Embassy you live in.

    I have challenged this with the Home Office for the past few years to no avail and the carriers will not carry your T.C.N. partner without the Permit. If you can manage to arrive in the country by luck or other route,then you cannot be refused entry and they know it.If you read the Home Office instructions to Border Entry Officers,it clearly instructs them not to refuse entry and not to deport or hassle any EU family who overstay the period of the Permit duration.

    Complaning to Europe is not very effective as they are empowered only to
    ask the offending country to comply.To force compliance one has to take a Judical Review in the High Court of the revelant country.After many years the EU will get around to issuing enforcement procedures against the offending country.

    So here we have to not confuse what we are entitled to and what we can get with the minimun of hassle.As you can see from the above the Carriers’Liability fines are the secred wepon used to enforce unlawfull behavour.

    If you want to read a very intresting High Court Judgement on the issue,go into and look up Juduical Review Case Number 2010 1398JR
    Judgement date 06/03/2011 Titled:Raducan&Anor-V-MJELR&ORS.
    Judge J Horgan goes through the whole EU38 Articles 5 and 10.
    He awards the T.C.N. €7,500.00 for unlawfull actions by the Irish Immigration Officers for refusing the T.C.N entry and voilating her rights as she had a EU Family Card issued by Rumania.Plus all of her legal costs.He also made a declaration that the T.C.N. only needed a Valid Passport and a Marrage Certficate to lawfully enter Ireland or any other Member State with her EU Husband.

  • portia  On October 24, 2011 at 21:57

    Hi, I’m a South African living and working in Gibraltar with a Gibraltar residency card,my husband(British citizen) lives in Spain and has a residency card of 5 years,I’ve been applying for a schengen visa through the Italian consulate in Gibraltar to go in and out of Spain before we got married,now that we are married i want to know if is there any other way to get a family visa or anything that’s not gonna cost me a fortune?(and they don’t guarantee you will get a visa)do i need to get a visa at all to cross the boarder if I’m with him??please help and thank-you in advance for the response

    • EUmovement  On November 3, 2011 at 18:00

      Spain should issue you a free Schengen visa. If he is working or retired there, you can easily move there.

  • Jennifer  On October 25, 2011 at 13:30

    I am South Arican and married a UK citizen last year. We married in SA, went over to the UK in January and got a cottage and wanted to settle there. We came back to SA in July to apply for my spousal visa but was refused as my husband gets incapacity and housing benefits. He got these before we met but I was refused as they say I am going to benefit from “public funds” yet my income is more than his!!!! What do we do know? He is on medication for life as he has kidney impairment, hypertension, diabetes and needs his NHS for medication as he will have to pay for medication if he moved to SA and he would loose his incapacity benefits. We are 56 and 61 years old. We are not out to try and take advantage of the UK benefits. He has worked from the age of 15 and paid into the National insurance system so he is entitled to some benefits and then his pension at the age of 65. We are now waiting to hear from the UK Border agency as we have appealed their decision but it could take up to Feb. 2012 to get a decision. Does any one have some advice on what we can do….I know we have to be patient until Feb. but if they say NO again what then?….

    • EUmovement  On November 3, 2011 at 17:59

      This blog has information relevant if your husband wanted to or had lived in another EU member state. For example if you and he wanted to move to Ireland or France. If he has not done so, then UK national law applies and very little which is here is relevant.

  • Isabella  On October 26, 2011 at 11:24

    hi, I am from Philippines living in Spain with my husband (who is Spanish) and I currently hold an EEA family residence card. We intend to travel to UK for only 3 days next month. Do I still need to get an EEA family permit to enter UK?
    Thank you in advance.

    • EUmovement  On November 3, 2011 at 17:56

      The UK would say you do require an EEA Family Permit. They do not recognize Residence Cards issues by other EU member states.

  • Anonymous  On October 30, 2011 at 01:23

    Hi there!i am engaged to an Italian who lives in UK,i was with him there till my visa was expired,i am a south african,now we r planning to get married in South africa,the question how do i join him to UK after we get married in South africa?can i apply for an EU family card in South Africa or should i go to his country to obtain that?also in UK what requirements will they need from us to grant me the entry?

    • EUmovement  On November 3, 2011 at 17:52

      The requirements are what are outlined on this page. The UK calls the visa the EEA Family Permit

  • miray  On October 30, 2011 at 18:44

    I am an EU citizen living in the Netherlands. My wife is a turkish citizen; we lived few years in the UK and my wife applied and obtained the residency permit until 2012. In 2009 we moved to the Netherlands for good where she was granted the permit to stay.
    My question is…I believe the UK permit is not valid anymore having left UK back in 2009…what does she need to travel to the UK for holiday? Can we use the old residency permit which is not yet expired? should we inform the UK consulate?

    Your help is much appreciated

    Best regards

  • Anonymous  On November 1, 2011 at 02:41

    I am an irish citizen living in the UK since 1989. My wife is a Thai national. She holds 5 year Uk residency card in her passport. we plan to travel to Ireland this year and to other european countries. Does she need a visa or is she ok with her residency card with supporting documentation. looking at all the comments here it appears that she would be ok to travel to any EU member state in my company without applying for a visa. Could you confirm this for me please?

  • Yumyum  On November 2, 2011 at 19:05

    Hello. I posted a comment a few days ago, and I can’t seem to find it anywhere so I’ll post it again:
    I’m a Nigerian citizen married to a Slovenian for 4 years, and we have a 2 year old son. I have a temporary residence card for family member of an EU citizen and a Slovenian Alien’s passport. I recently obtained an EEA family permit on the afore-mentioned passport and I plan to visit my family in the UK for christmas in December. ( My story is a pretty sad and complicated one. My parents and siblings moved to the UK 7 years ago and I was continuously denied a visa every time I applied- 5 times. I was even denied 2 more times after getting married and moving to Slovenia from Poland until someone took pity on me and suggested I apply for an EEA family permit which I had never heard of. My parents and siblings currently hold British passports)
    So My husband, Son and I will be travelling together to the UK in December.
    Here’s the problem. My husband needs to be in Austria for a very important meeting 3 days after we arrive, and has to return to Slovenia.
    My questions are:
    1. Will he have any problems leaving the UK without me?
    2. Will I have any problems leaving the UK unaccompanied by my husband?
    3. In the event that I am allowed to return to Slovenia, will I be allowed back in the UK?
    4. Does my son by any chance, pass as my family member?

    I would really appreciate any advice whatsoever as we’re really confused about what to do now. We’ve nursed the thought of my husband coming back to pick me up, but it’s all too cumbersome as his company is extremely busy rounding up the books in December. If this is even possible, we’d be willing to turn to it as a last resort.
    Help? Anyone? Thanks a gazillion in advance!

    • EUmovement  On November 3, 2011 at 17:42

      Very interesting issue!

      I would strongly suggest you create a new thread at to get a variety of views. Please send me a link to the new thread.

      I suspect you will have no problem if you do it, but I would take certain travel booking precautions to ensure you remain well within the law.

  • Shakil Khan  On December 21, 2011 at 22:52

    i am surprised the way the EU laws concerning immigration issues are entertained by most in fact all the EU members states. it is evident that most of the Embassies and consulates get themselves confused with the EU laws and instead straight apply the national immigration rules. i have indefinite leave to remain in the UK, my wife is a British Citizen and i am a Pakistani citizen living in Pakistan since July 2010 to look after my ill father, my wife has a permanent Job in the UK but she visits me in Pakistan every now and then for few days. When i wanted to apply for the Schengen visa to visit Spain with my wife but when i went to apply under the EU laws they knew nothing and said i should apply from UK not Pakistan…. which is shocking when i tried to explain the EU laws etc they simply said it is up to Spanish authorities what to decide. i complained it to that solvet etc but all in vain.

  • Jess  On December 23, 2011 at 20:43

    Hi i was wondering if anyone could help me.

    I hold an ordinary South African passport and am currently living and working in the untied kingdom due to the fact that i obtained a EEA family permit through my long term partner, who is a german national. We are not married or civil partners, i obtained the residence card through proving we were in a durable relationship – thus i am seen as a benificiary – right? in order to travel to germany together i believed that i wouldn’t need a visa, but apparently because we are not married or civil partners i have to get a shengen visa even when traveling with him. I am so confused – would they stop me at the border control and if so what documents besides my EEA family permit (residence card) would i need to produce? Thanks

    • EU free movement  On January 9, 2012 at 13:31

      Do you have a Residence Card, or merely a EEA Family Permit?

      With a Residence Card, you should be able to travel. If you are worried about Germany, then just enter Schengen through any country but Germany and then enter Germany. You EU citizen partner should carry evidence that he/she is working in the UK (and thus Singh applies to them).

      Contact Solvit if you really are having troubles with German embassy

  • Aliona  On December 27, 2011 at 22:32

    Hi I am an Irish citizen and my husband is from moldova. he has a gnib (residence card) based on our marriage. We wish to travel to moldova and return by car. I was wondering does he need a schengen viza if i am with him?

  • Sallyfuerteventura  On January 1, 2012 at 23:41

    I am and english woman (british passport) and i have lived in spain for the last 13 years (N.I.E/ residencia). I will be going to Pakistan to marry in June. What it the easiest way to get him back to spain? I will be married in the first week of arriving in Pakistan and staying there for 6 weeks before returning to spain.
    I am dreading the beauracracy of filling in forms and the idea that they will reject any application just terrifies me. Thanks

    • EU free movement  On January 9, 2012 at 13:27

      It should be very straight forward to get a visa for your husband. If you are working I would encourage you to bring proof of working (such as a pay slip or letter from your employer). If you have Permanent Residence, then bring proof of that. The rest of the requirements are just want are on this page.

      Note that you should try, if possible, to get several copies of your marriage certificate. Far easier now than later!

      The Spanish may hassle you, but push back!

  • Maria  On February 9, 2012 at 17:53

    Hello! I am a Spanish citizen. My husband is from Colombia and since we got married we are living in the USA. We would like to move to the Netherlands to work there. I know I can work there as a EU citizen but how my husband should proceed to go there with me and get a work permit? Is it easy to go first to my home country with him?

    • EU free movement  On February 10, 2012 at 07:40

      He can easily get a nl visa if he is traveling with you. Far easier than trying to enter Spain

  • Gian  On April 10, 2012 at 11:08

    Can anyone help??
    I currently live in France.
    My Wife is Peruvian and we have a 20 month son who has a British Passport, they are in Peru at the moment.
    I am renovating a farmhouse in France that my father bought a year ago.
    The house is in his name and I am the occupant.
    I want to bring my wife over to be with me (and help with the house) For a period up to a year.
    When it is done we intend to settle either in the UK or Peru.
    I am a musician/writer with no work contract, though I have savings in the bank in France and am registered here for tax.

    So, my questions are:

    1. Can she apply for a long stay visa? (Or does one exist without residency application?) And do we have a good chance of obtaining one?
    2. Is there any info about what would be required to show she will be financially okay?
    3. Can we apply for residency in the UK during her stay in France?

    It’s so hard and confusing out there without a law degree in immigration and it seems impossible to find the kind of agencies available in the UK.

    If anyone can help PLEASE let me know!!
    Thanks in advance

    • EU free movement  On April 10, 2012 at 12:44

      Your wife just needs a simple Schengen visitors visa (she is a family member of an EU citizen and so does not need to fill out the *ed boxes). As long as you are legally in France, she can be with you.

      Once she arrives in France she needs to apply for a Residence Card.

      If you have worked in France for some period of time, then you can in the future move back to the UK on the basis of EU law. Very straight forward.

  • Marina  On May 2, 2012 at 15:31

    Hi people,
    Can anyone answer me please.
    I have just received British passport, before i was Uzbekistan. My mum was always visiting me in the UK and had to apply for visitor visa, which she had to pay every time for. The question is – As I recently became British citizen, will her visa to the UK be free of charge, as to any Shengen country?
    Thanks in advance.

    • EU free movement  On May 2, 2012 at 15:47

      Your mom will continue to have to pay for her visas to the UK. And, unless she is dependent on you, will also have to pay for Schengen visas even if you are travelling together

  • zcarm  On May 3, 2012 at 19:57

    Hi my wife is Philippina and I am German citizen living in Ireland. Married since 16 years. We want to visit together the UK the first time. My wife is holding a Garda Residence Stamp 4 EU Family Card. Does she need a Visa to enter the UK ?

  • sean McCarthy  On May 7, 2012 at 19:57

    I took JR against the Irish Govrnment in 2010 for demanding my wife have a visa to enter Ireland in voilation of EU38.I won the case and costs and the Irish law was changed in April 2011 with SI146.
    I have issued in 2011 a High Court JR against the British Government and it is due to come before the court on the 28th June 2012 for a full hearing.The EU Commission has also on the 28th April 2012 served on the British Government a considered opinion and they now have a period of two months to change the law or else they will be served with enforcement proceedings and taken to the ECJ for voilating the Directive.
    The Directive states if you have a EU family residence card issued by any member state you don’t need a visa.The problem is that,the carriers won’t take you to the UK withough a visa.However,once you can get to the border or point of entry they have to let you enter.If you don’t have a EU residence card they have to let you in with your marrage certficate. In short,the Home Office has finally run out of road and I have called there bluff,so let battle commence.

    • irelandsreversediscrimination  On May 8, 2012 at 09:21

      many thanks Sean, do you have both case numbers,
      and perhaps a link to the Irish case, I would like to read it, if possible.
      again many thanks and fair play to ya

  • canet altinle  On May 16, 2012 at 00:19

    hi i work in uk for 2.5 years and im bulgarian citizen and turkish citizen as well…my wife has got only turkish passport what can we do to take her visa
    come to uk?

    • EU free movement  On May 16, 2012 at 03:09

      I am assuming you are a Bulgarian working legally in the UK and registered somehow with UKBA. If so your wife can just apply for an EEA Family Permit

  • Anonymous  On June 5, 2012 at 17:46

    I would like to know about my rights of freedom while travelling with my EU wife. I am holder of Eu4 fam residence card issued by justice department of Ireland. I recently travelled to few european countries with my wife( polish national). I had to face certain difficulties while entering Belgium (charloei airport), France (paris), Spain (san javier airport) poland (poznan). all I want to know following.

    1. Do immigration officers need to stamp my passport while entering and leaving country? My passport got stamped in belgium,spain and recently in poznan.

    2. Do they need to stamp my passport at dublin airport all the times I enter into state?

    3. When embassies (like Spain, France) mentioned on their websites visa not required while travelling with eu4fam card and wife, then why immigration officers asked for visa at arrival in those countries?

    4. where can I complain against rude Polish immigration officers who totally crossed the limit and misused his powers?

    I would like if you provide some useful information regarding all my queries.

  • John  On June 19, 2012 at 20:23

    Hi I am a born and bred UK national with a legally married thai wife. Her thai passport is in her married name and endorsed Spouse/CP of myself. She has ILR and is entitled to work,live (and breath) in the UK. I am trying to work out if we need to get a shengen visa or not to visit France and Italy (I have family in both ) We live on the doorstep of the channel tunnel and to have to go up to the embassies in London to get a visa seems stupid. Like everyone else on this site I find working through these regulations totally mind boggling! I have a friend who is an immigration officer actually working for UKBA and even he can’t give me a simple answer, so what chance have we mere mortals got.
    I wonder how much potential tourism is killed off because of these over the top regulations. I know embassies and the spin off industries servicing these needs make a lot of money from these regulations and their complexity, but surely the potential of increased tourism from simpler regulations would outweigh the selfish money grabbing organisations praying on the confusion of ordinary people without a degree in law!
    I still don’t know if she needs a shengen visa or not so any comments very appreciated. We will be travelling together!

    Many thanks in anticipation

  • raj  On August 24, 2012 at 20:49

    I am a permanent residence card holder. At the moment I am living alone. Can I travel without visa to eu countrys alone? I am confused. Pls help me. Thanks

  • Amal  On August 25, 2012 at 05:29

    I’m British national, live in UK and I came on holiday to Qatar to take with my two grandsons 20 and 17 years old who reside in Qatar to Spain on holidays. Can the embassy of Spain in Qatar reject their application becau se of their nationality as the they are Somalian? what can I do if they reject to recognize the Somali passport as most of the countries do? Please help me.

    • EU free movement  On September 19, 2012 at 22:11

      No the Spanish embassy can not legally reject the application if you will be travelling with them (or will be there first). But Spain has a long reputation of being a bit lawless when it comes to EU free movement law, so expect that you will have to fight. Apply early and then fight your ground!

      You are one of the first grandparents that I personally have heard from who wants to travel with their grandchildren in this way. Expect to have to show people the law so that they realize that grandchildren are also included.

  • Hann  On September 5, 2012 at 07:59

    Hi there, I’m a British national resident in Spain. My husband isn’t an EU national. We’ve applied for a Schengen so he can join me in Spain. We’ve also applied for a residency card, but we have to wait for 4 months to even submit the papers for the application.

    But does this mean he has no right to work even though we’ve applied for the residency card? It seems a very long time to wait and I’ve heard stories of people who got these rights much faster in other EU countries.

    I was told by the Spanish Embassy where we applied for the Schengen that it was the right way to bring him to live with me in the EU. Is there anything I can do inside Spain to get him a spouse visa – to convert the Schengen into something that allows him to work, or is it normal to have to wait months in all cases for a residency appointment?

    I’ve been reading about EEA and EEU Family Permits – would applying for one of these help us at all?

    Any advice about where to start with this would be much appreciated.
    Many thanks,

  • peterhamiltonsmith  On February 19, 2013 at 11:36

    Can somebody please advise on the following:

    I am a British Citizen with a British passport. My wife is Mexican with a Mexican passport (she has a German residency permit based on my status as British).
    We have 2 children who are both registered as British and hold British passports.
    We currently live in Germany due to my job, however we are looking to move back to the UK later this year, permenantly however we do not own our own home there and will have to rent initially.
    What visa does my wife need to enter the UK and where/when should we apply?
    We have had so many issues upon entering the UK….she is never normally allowed to stay for longer than 2 weeks…on one occasion she was give only 24 hours. She has never been convicted of a crime anywhere…she is squeaky clean so to speak… But we always have issues with the border agency.

    • EU free movement  On February 24, 2013 at 11:18

      What is YOUR status in Germany? Have you been working?

      If so she has a full right to enter the UK with you at any time. Carry proof that you have been working.

      Also there would be no requirement for you to show assets or a uk house of any shape or size

  • Jon  On March 15, 2013 at 08:16

    Hi, after some advice please, getting thoroughly confused! I am a British citizen/ passport holder, have been living and working in Thailand for 7 years. My wife is Thai (Thai passport), we have been together over 6 years, married for a few months and have 3 children together (all with British passports).

    I have been offered a job in the UK or Italy by the same company that I came to work for initially in Thailand. We’ve had to discount the UK as I’m currently earning below the threshold, duh this is Thailand, salaries aren’t that high but the cost of living is ten times lower! The salary offered in the UK is considerably higher than the threshold… but of course that’s irrelevant as I can’t take the job until we get to the UK, and I don’t seem to be able to do that legally with my family!).

    So we’re planning on heading to Italy but I have no idea what visa we should be applying for and the Italian embassy in Thailand (which is over 1000 miles from where we actually live) is being incredibly unhelpful and demanding all manner of financial records, even told me that myself and the children would need a visa to enter Italy when we have British passports! I have emailed them several times but had no response and the conflicting information offered over the phone by their staff is becoming laughable.

    I am planning to head up to the embassy with my family and try to assert my rights on the doorstep. Any advice would be welcomed as would any stories from others that have gone a similar route or had dealings with the Italian embassy in Bangkok.

    • EU free movement  On March 16, 2013 at 10:22

      If there is a closer embassy for another Schengen country, you can always get a visa there. She only needs a short stay entry visa. Her right to remain depends solely on being married to you.

    • David G  On March 16, 2013 at 15:22

      I am living and working in the Czech Republic now with my Filipino spouse. I am Scottish. Basically all you need is a standard Schengen tourist visa type C and you say you are going there to stay for less than 90 days as a tourist. As an EU citizen you should make the application and remind them that you do not have to pay anything. You do need to provide passport and marriage document. Once you are in Italy you apply for temporary residency for yourself and family. If you have any problems after making your application write to Solvit – They are very helpful. They can also help further your application for residency when there. Good luck mate.

      • David G  On March 16, 2013 at 15:35

        By the way the visa is just for your wife as she is a third country national. You and your kids don’t need anything other than British passports. Also Solvit didn’t answer my phone call but did take action once I sent an email. However, I did have to send another email to ask for an update to find out that they had taken action. I contacted both Solvit in the Czech Republic and in the UK. The UK were a bit quicker but the Czech solvit seemed to have more clout. Hope that helps.

  • tariq  On April 21, 2013 at 17:04

    i am from Iraq living in Romania with my wife and 3 children,my wife and my kidds are Romanian citizen,i have resedence card valid for 5 years as a family member.Th british Embassy in Bucharest has told me that i do not need a visa to enter in the UK since my wife is traviling with me .is that true ? w want to make a short visit to the UK but we need to make sure before we go

  • Peter  On June 14, 2013 at 06:14

    My wife and son (Indian nationals) were refused visas by the Italian Consulte in Kolkata (I am British) even though we had original birth certificates, marriage certificate. and that my identity was endorsed in my wife’s and son’s passports.(father and husband).

    They said they required an apostille sticker on the documents from the foreign affairs ministry of India, which would take a minimum of 30 days.
    They had considered our application, but refused on the grounds of lack of documentation.
    I had already successfully applied for a UK visa.
    I am surprised that with the 3 methods of corroboration of our relationships (birth, marriage certificate, passport verification, and UK family visas already obtained, they still thought our claim was fraudulent).

  • Ian Mayes  On October 4, 2013 at 20:52

    I am a British citizen living in France now for 20 years where I have a small business and therefore am economically integrated as I pay French income and social taxes. I also pay UK tax but have no residence in the UK. I want to marry in the Philippines and bring my Filipina wife back into France but not one border agency, embassy or consulate of any country will reply to me and say yes you can reenter back to your home in France with your wife, live in peace and continue contributing to the French economic system – this despite all attempts to contact them for guidance. If anyone has clear and categoric information relating to this situation please let me know.

  • MAYURI  On August 3, 2014 at 11:18

    Hi, i am a French citizen working in the UK for 5 years now. I got married in Srilanka last month to a Srilankan and i would like to sponsor my husband to UK from Srilanka. What kind of visa does it require to enter and joint me in the UK?

  • Anonymous  On August 5, 2014 at 21:18


    My Husband is british citison .i have the indian pass port. We will go to Denmark my sisters marriage. I need what type of document

    • EU free movement  On August 5, 2014 at 23:12

      Depends a bit of where you live. If you live in a different EU member state (e.g. Ireland) and have a Residence Card, then you need nothing more than that Residence Card. If you live in the UK, then you likely need a free Schengen visa.

  • Ash  On August 15, 2014 at 11:48

    Had a lot of trouble at the VFS centre in London.

    They wanted to see airline tickets (not just an email copy of booking), hotel booking and other things in violation of this directive.

    I’ve made a formal complaint to Solveit, the Dutch Embassy and VFS.

  • laylat  On September 26, 2014 at 21:25

    Hi I hold Tanzanian passport and have an italian reidence permit (long Stay) my partner is italian. I would like to travel for holidays to the UK with my kids but the problem comes that i have been enquiring if i am supposed to get a visa or not. I have called the visa office in UK and they told me that with the permit i can enter but still to ask the immigration office at the airport in UK. Here in Italy they told me that i will not be needing a visa. Now I am stuck in the middle not knowing what to do so please can you tell me what to do and which website to check for more accurate information and all kinds of documents that i will be needing because it has been two months trying to find out about this.

    • EU free movement  On September 27, 2014 at 03:41

      Are you married?

      • sean mccarthy  On September 28, 2014 at 10:20

        Currently,you require a UK Visa as the carriers will not take you without it,The UK has a rule that makes the carrier pay a £2,000. for every passenger they carry without the necessary visa.Under Directive EU 38 Article 10 family members with a EU family residence card are exempt from the visa requirement,however the UK is in breach of this article as they refuse to accept only the cards issued by Germany & Estonia.We are currently awaiting the ruling from the Grand Chamber ECJ on this issue and it should be announced in a matter of weeks.

        The revenant point in your situation is that you are not in position of a EU family member card but a domestic card issued under Italian domestic rules and are not covered under the visa exemption as per article 10.

  • Rabih Benkacem  On September 30, 2014 at 00:18

    Hi all,
    I would like clarify something,
    Not knowing that my wife (non EEU)can apply for the EEA family permit we have applied for a visiting visa for the second time to visit my family in the UK from Spain. My question is : will it be possible to apply for the EEA family permit while the visitors visa has not expired?
    As we have decided to move back to London for good.
    Many thanks in advance.

  • fozia jamil  On October 22, 2014 at 03:04

    I am a British citizen living and working in Spain and I am married to a Pakistani national.
    Our Marriage took place in Pakistan.
    My husband applied for residence permit under European law 06 May 2014.
    We produced all documents including my work contract, medical insurance for both of us, marriage certificate issued in Pakistan and attested by Pakistan foreign ministry.
    Only thing they required was that marriage certificate should be legalized by Spain embassy in Pakistan.
    So we sent marriage certificate to a cousin in Pakistan with power of attorney.
    My cousin submitted the marriage certificate to embassy on 13/06/2014 and paid the fees equal to 290 Euros (38000 local currency)
    since then after nearly four and half months, Spain embassy is still holding our marriage certificate and not telling us that why is verification/legalization process is not completed after four and half months.
    I have sent numerous emails to Madrid legalization department and Spain embassy Pakistan but without any luck.
    I contacted (Solvit) but they refused to intervene by saying that legalization of marriage certificate does not fall under EU freedom of movement law.
    Any sort of advice or help to pursue Spain embassy to complete verification process without unnecessary delay, will be appreciated.
    Where I can seek help or what action I should take or where I should complain as I am new to Spain and I have no idea of any organisation that can help me in this matter
    And also can somebody advise me about the legal status of my husband at the moment as his Schengen visa had expired three months ago but Spanish authorities did not rejected his EU residence permit application as yet.

  • Ashwin Patel  On October 29, 2014 at 22:15

    I’m a Portugese passport holder and have lived in the UK. My wife holds a Indian passport has Residence card of a Family Member of an EEA National Visa for 5 year. We are planning a one week trip to Portugal in January 2015.Does my wife need an Portugese visa for this short trip or can she travel with me as long as we carry a copy of our marriage certificate?as well as does we require hotel accomodation proof & travel insurance?
    Pls do the needful.

  • Tash  On October 30, 2014 at 08:08

    Hi. Please advise on the type of visa I will require and where I can source the relevant application forms. I am a South African national and my boyfriend (long term relationship) and EU citizen (holds both Polish and South African citizenship). My partner will be moving to The Netherlands next month as he now has employment there. He currently has a 1 year contract with his new Dutch employer (I believe this is standard practise) with the possibility to become a permanent employee. What can I do to join him?

  • Paul Mccue  On December 17, 2014 at 02:44

    I am an Irish national living in the UK for the past 15 years. I have met a Chinese national woman who currently lives in China and we intend to get married. Since her English language skills are very low it is unlikely she would pass the UK test – also my income is considerably less than what is currently required by the UK gov’t. Would it be possible for us to get married in another EU country (Italy perhaps) and then return to the UK as a married couple without having to go through all the hurdles the UK is putting up? thanks

  • mustafa  On January 11, 2015 at 12:14

    I am British citizen and my wife holds afghan passport and I live in Sweden how can I apply for my wife a visa

    • EU free movement  On January 12, 2015 at 11:32

      If you are working or otherwise self sufficient or have been in Sweden for under 3 months, then she just needs to apply for a schengen visa

  • Emily  On January 11, 2015 at 18:06

    I’m British, I want to study in Sweden, can my Colombain husband come with me? He doesn’t have a visa to live in the UK as we went back to Colombia after we were married. How can he join me while I study?

    • EU free movement  On January 12, 2015 at 11:30

      Yes if you are married. If you also work in Sweden, then he can also come to the UK on the basis of EU free movement law

  • anna2  On January 13, 2015 at 17:18

    Hello im Slovakian citizen and living and working since 14 years in Austria ! i just got married with my Moroccan husband . . .
    how the EU law can affect use ?
    can my husband join me easy ?
    how ? can he apply for a settlement permit after he gets his first 90 days visa ?!!

    • EU free movement  On January 14, 2015 at 11:35

      Since you are married, he can immiediately join you. On arrival he can apply for a Residence Card

      • sean mccarthy  On January 14, 2015 at 21:00

        Hi Anna2,             Based on what you are telling us,you are an EU citezen who has exercised your treaty rightshaving worked in Austria.You do not say where your husband is now,assuming he is with you inAustria, you don’t mention the most important point about yourself,which is, are you registered inAustria as a permanent resident?,you should have done this after 5 years residence.The importance of thispoint is that if you are registered as a permanent resident and have been self supporting and paying tax,then you do not have to have private medical insurance to comply with Article 16 of the Directive.If the answer to the above questions is yes,then you can apply for a residence permit for your husband underDirective EU 38/2004.You will simply need your rental contract-tax return for the past year also marriage certificate. The only query they probaly raise is about your marriage and how long you have known him,they will wantto see proof that you have known him for two years to prove that it is not a marriage of convince.If you have a child together, then your marriage cannot be questioned as having a child together under law deems themarriage to be beyond question.Good luck,Sean

  • Alison  On January 13, 2015 at 21:29

    I am a British citizen and my husband is gambian but he lives in Italy we marry in Italy but I want to invite him to UK can I get some help on this please

    • EU free movement  On January 14, 2015 at 11:38

      EU free movement law only applies to him when you are travelling together to non British member states.

  • Rob  On January 19, 2015 at 16:14

    Hi I’m a UK citizen and want to bring my wife who lives in the Philippines over here. As the UK is part of the EU then I should be subject to the same rules that all the other EU countries abide by i.e. The freedom of movement act. However I think the UK government just favours EU citizens that just come here and live. They can bring in loads of family members from all over the world once they arrive and don’t even have to show they earn the £18,600.00 a year like an English resident would. Also the process and cost is very low compared to the poor old English. They also don’t have to take an English language exam either. One of my friends knows a guy from the EU now in London that was able to bring in his three wives from India without checks. I just want to know if I went to France and became a French citizen then would I be able to come back to the UK and be treated like an EU national under the Freedom of movement act?

  • Euro Cit  On April 16, 2015 at 19:48

    Needs updating as the UK now accept Article 10 5 year residence cards

  • Scott  On May 24, 2015 at 17:18

    My wife is British and therefore an EU citizen. I am American. We have been living in the United States but I have a sabbatical leave soon and we would like to spend more than three months in the Schengen zone. The problem is that we will not necessarily be residing in one location for longer than three weeks or so as we plan to do quite a lot of traveling in both Spain and France. Does the fact that we do not have an address or long-term place of residence void any of our rights to free movement or put me in violation of Schengen law? If, after three months, I need to apply for residency, where does one go to do this? We will have copies of our marriage certificate as proof of our relationship, but will the officials grant residency immediately by doing something like stamping my passport, or will they need to mail me a document of some sort (in which case not having a mailing address could prove problematic). Thank you for any help or insight you might be able to share. PS. We will probably only overstay the three-month period by four or five weeks.

    • EU free movement  On May 28, 2015 at 12:47

      Your status is wholly dependent on your wife’s status. Will *she* be working or self sufficient? Then you should be ok. Key is that you travel with proof that you are married

  • Marian  On February 8, 2016 at 21:12

    Hi, I am spanish and I ve two kids who are spanish as well. My husband holds pakisatan’s passport. I got admission in PhD in university of London. I want him to travel with me. What kind of visa he needs and what are the requirements for applying the visa?

  • Glenn Amper  On April 9, 2017 at 21:21

    Hi I am a same sex partner of a British Citizen and we are planning on visiting Bulgaria together in May. My partner has a residence card in Bulgaria since he has a business there and has a property he lives in. He visits Bulgaria 4 times a year. Now my question is, will I be entitled to get a free visit visa to Bulgaria as a partner of an EU National? My problem is that same-sex marriage is not recognized in Bulgaria, will that cause a problem? I hope anyone can help. I’m a non-EU national by the way. Thank you.

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