We’re guessing the question that’s top of mind is ‘do I qualify?’.
That’s why we’re starting today’s FAQ session by telling you who is eligible to apply for a South African life partner visa. Then we move on to other questions we get each day.
Just before we get to all that, please have a look here at the accompanying spouse visa if you’re a foreigner coming to South Africa for work.
Now let’s answer your questions.
Who is eligible for a life partner visa?
South Africa’s life partner visa is intended for foreigners in a life partnership with a South African permanent resident or citizen. The visa enables the foreign partner to immigrate to South Africa.
What is the definition of ‘life partnership’?
The Department of Home Affairs define a life partnership as a committed long-term relationship, either between a man and woman or a same-sex partnership.
This means your relationship is permanent, an obligation of mutual emotional support as well as reciprocal financial support, and exclude any other person.
How do we prove our partnership?
The South African life partner visa requirements state that you and your partner must be able to prove that your relationship is permanent and of ‘life partner’ status. Think shared financial responsibilities and rental agreements naming both partners.
How far back to we need to go?
Trust us – the key here is giving as much evidence as possible. The more proof you can provide of your relationship, the better your chances will be of receiving a visa.
The minimum requirements however are the following:
- Temporary residency application: You’ll need to prove co-habitation for at least two years.
- Permanent residency application: You must be able to prove that your relationship has been of a permanent nature for five years.
What’s the difference between temporary residence and permanent residence on a life partner visa?
Temporary residency on a life partner visa is valid for two to three years plus you’ll need an endorsement on the visa to work, study or run a business.
Should you want to renew your visa, you’ll be able to do so, provided you can meet all the requirements again.
On the other hand, permanent residence means you can work, study or run a business without an endorsement, and you enjoy most of the rights and privileges that South African citizens do.
On the downside, permanent residence applications take a lot longer than temporary residence applications to reach an outcome. At the moment, people wait up to two years to receive permanent residency status.
Get started with an application for life partner visa for South Africa
If you can’t wait any longer to join your partner in South Africa, get the ball rolling straight away.
The first step is doing an immigration assessment. Ours take only a couple of minutes, is free of charge and you can do it here.
Our consultants will contact you to discuss your eligibility as well as the complete list of requirements and endorsements if necessary.
It’s only the start of the process, but the sooner you get started, the sooner you’ll be able to join your partner in South Africa.