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I'm USC and my husband is UK citizen. I have my spouse visa, dated June 2009.

We've decided to move to USA in late 2010.

How does this affect my 2 years toward ILR? If we come back to UK, do I have to start it all over again? (Including new spouse visa?)

If I come back and forth to build up to 2 years, is that the same?

Lastly, are we better served to stay here the full two years for me to reach the ILR? (We are prepared to do that to save future hassle.)

Thanks!
 

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You have to have lived for the full two years continuously during your trial period before you can apply for ILR. If you leave UK after a year and then wish to return, you may be able to use your existing visa if there's any time remaining, or apply for a new visa. And yes, you will have to start from scratch towards your two years. If you will have been married for four years by the time you apply for your next UK visa, you can apply for indefinite leave to enter straightaway.
Waiting till you get your ILR is one idea, but remember ILR lapses if you stay away from UK for more than two years. Returning periodically to UK trying to 'reset the clock' doesn't work, as your return to UK must be for the purposes of re-establishing your residence here, not just for temporary purposes like visiting or tourism. Exception to this two-year rule exists, but only for those who have lived most of their life in UK or living abroad working for UK government or armed forces, which I don't think apply in your case?
 

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One trickier for you....

You have to have lived for the full two years continuously during your trial period before you can apply for ILR. If you leave UK after a year and then wish to return, you may be able to use your existing visa if there's any time remaining, or apply for a new visa. And yes, you will have to start from scratch towards your two years. If you will have been married for four years by the time you apply for your next UK visa, you can apply for indefinite leave to enter straightaway.
Waiting till you get your ILR is one idea, but remember ILR lapses if you stay away from UK for more than two years. Returning periodically to UK trying to 'reset the clock' doesn't work, as your return to UK must be for the purposes of re-establishing your residence here, not just for temporary purposes like visiting or tourism. Exception to this two-year rule exists, but only for those who have lived most of their life in UK or living abroad working for UK government or armed forces, which I don't think apply in your case?
That was an excellent response that answers part of my own....but I have one trickier for you if you could help to answer this one....I would really appreciate the reply.

I too am married to a UK citizen. I am US citizen. I will have lived continuously in the UK for one year of my 2 yr visa this December. I am currently being considered for a job with a UK company....but the catch is.....it is back in the US to develop territory for them over there. My intention is to transfer back to the UK to work out of their head office eventually....but the assignment could have me over in the US for this company for 1-2 yrs. My wife has a good career here so the plan is for her to stay put and for us to do the Long Distance thing for the interim. We have done it before and we are not spring chickens anymore so the job and situation, while not ideal...is plausible.

My question is....might there be a loophole being assigned by a UK company...meaning i would be paying UK taxes...that this would still constitute a continuous "effort" for lack of a better word....towards ultimately applying for and obtaining my ILR visa in the UK?

I am scratching my head over this one.....

Once again...any help would be appreciated.

Cheers. EG
 

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That was an excellent response that answers part of my own....but I have one trickier for you if you could help to answer this one....I would really appreciate the reply.

I too am married to a UK citizen. I am US citizen. I will have lived continuously in the UK for one year of my 2 yr visa this December. I am currently being considered for a job with a UK company....but the catch is.....it is back in the US to develop territory for them over there. My intention is to transfer back to the UK to work out of their head office eventually....but the assignment could have me over in the US for this company for 1-2 yrs. My wife has a good career here so the plan is for her to stay put and for us to do the Long Distance thing for the interim. We have done it before and we are not spring chickens anymore so the job and situation, while not ideal...is plausible.

My question is....might there be a loophole being assigned by a UK company...meaning i would be paying UK taxes...that this would still constitute a continuous "effort" for lack of a better word....towards ultimately applying for and obtaining my ILR visa in the UK?
No, you will have to have lived in UK for two years before you can apply for ILR. If you return to US now, even though you'll be working for a British company, it will bring you back to square one. Once your two-year (it's usually 27 months now) settlement visa expires while you are in the States, you will have to reapply for one if you wish to return to UK to live. If in the meantime you'll have been married 4 years, then you next application will be for indefinite leave to enter.
If your time in the US is regarded as temporary absence abroad, e.g. if you are only expected to stay say for 6 months and then return permanently to UK, then the Border Agency is likely to look kindly on your application for ILR, but staying a year or two in US will tip the balance and they will argue that you haven't fulfilled your requirements for two-year probationary period in UK, especially as you propose to live apart from your wife.

This is what the official regs say:

Absences from UK during probationary period

There is no specific requirement in the Rules that the entire probationary period must be spent in the United Kingdom. For example, where an applicant has spent a limited period outside of the United Kingdom in connection with his employment, this should not count against him. However, if he has spent the majority of the period overseas, there may be reason to doubt that all the requirements of the Rules have been met. Each case must be judged on its merits, taking into account reasons for travel, length of absences and whether the applicant and sponsor travelled and lived together during the time spent outside the United Kingdom. These factors will need to be considered against the requirements of the Rules.


http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/s...dischapter8/section1/section1.pdf?view=Binary Clause 4.5
 

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My question is....might there be a loophole being assigned by a UK company...meaning i would be paying UK taxes...that this would still constitute a continuous "effort" for lack of a better word....towards ultimately applying for and obtaining my ILR visa in the UK?
I would also question the assumption that you will be paying UK taxes. If you are no longer physically present in the UK and cannot claim bona fide residence there, you aren't eligible for the overseas earned income exclusion and thus you will be expected to pay US income taxes (and US social security) on your earnings. As an added consideration, you will be filing as married, filing separately - though that's the status you would normally use when married to a "non-resident alien." It is not an advantageous filing status, particularly if you don't have access to the exclusion.

What matters is where you are while earning your salary, not the "home base" of your employer.
Cheers,
Bev
 
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