FAQS: The South African Spousal Permit


The South African Spousal Permit is based on very specific and strict variables. If you are a foreigner and you have been married for anything less than a five year period, you will need to apply under the temporary residency category.

Once the marriage has been in place for a period of five years then you can proceed to apply for permanent residency. It is imperative that you understand that these specific requirements will need to be met and applied for accordingly.

Here are some answers to some common questions with regard to the South African Spousal Permit Requirements:

What will a South African spousal permit allow me to do?

The good news is that when your application for a spousal permit have been approved, you will be entitled to stay in South Africa. You will also be eligible to study, work and conduct business in the country, just like every other South African citizen.

Are there any ongoing requirements?

Yes, in order to keep your spousal permit, you are going to need to prove that your marriage is still real and valid. Fortunately you will only need to do this once during the 18-24 month period after receiving your spousal permit.

Who can apply for a South African Spousal Permit?

All non South Africans who have been married for more than five years to a South African citizen or to a South African permanent residence holder may apply for a Spousal Permit.

What happens if we have been married for under five years?

If you have been married for less than five years, you will be welcome to apply for a spousal visa. This is a temporary residency visa which is issued for two or three years.

The good news is that once you have been married for over five years, you will be able to apply to become a permanent resident.

Get in touch for expert assistance with your visa application

If you have questions or wish to consult with one of our experts on your eligibility please feel free to contact us on: +27 (0)21 424 2460 or alternatively request a call back. You could also take our free one minute assessment here.