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Hi

I just wondered if anyone was in a similar situation to me or had any information that might help!

My fiance is a New Zealand citizen but has lived in Australia for the past 8 years. We are due to get married at the end of June in the UK. We submitted a UK fiance visa in mid February to Canberra where it will have then have been transferred to Manila for processing.

When we applied the only data on expected processing time available was on the UKBA website from Dec 2011 and suggested that 85-90% of applications submitted in Australia were completed within 15 days. Since then the February numbers have gone up, after we applied, suggesting 99% were done within 40 days. We have now been waiting 41 days by our calculation and still no numbers have been posted online for the processing times in March.

We are starting to get a bit concerned at this delay and are wondering if it is just our application or there are other people out there who have waited a similar time? Is there a reason why processing rates in Manila have slowed down?

We are due to pay the bulk of the money for our wedding in the next 3-4 weeks but without a visa for my other half we don't really know what to do! The embassy won't answer our questions till after 60 days, which means we would have to wait another 4 weeks before we can speak to someone in Canberra who might be able to help.

We are considering withdrawing the application but we don't know what the implications of this would be for my other half future travel to the UK and how hard it is to withdraw an application and how long it would take for him to get his passport back.

Any help/information/reassurance would be greatly appreciated!
All I can suggest is that all visa centres have been innundated with applications for people terrified of changes due in June and trying to beat the deadline for consideration under the current rules. UKBA in US have doubled the processing time in a matter of weeks.

My advice is to sit tight and wait for any news of your application. Withdrawing now will put you at the back of the queue and you lose all your fees and have to pay again.
 

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Thank you very much for your reply, that gives us a possible reason why it is taking so much longer than we anticipated it ever would! Do you know of anyone on this forum who has submitted in Australia with a similar timeline to us? I have been looking but there doesn't seem to be many people who have submitted a fiancé (or spouse) visa application from Australia recently.

I won't meet the financial requirements if the new rules are passed to be sponsor for our subsequent spouse visa, after we are married, as we won't convert till July. Will the new rules apply to us even though we applied for the fiancé visa under the current rules? I am hoping not as that would be very disappointing after all the time and effort we have put in to applying and waiting for a fiancé visa.

I also wondered if you might know if they take notice of the intended date of your marriage when they assess the application or if applications are just assessed in the order they are recieved? Could we possibly be in a situation where the visa is not granted in time for the wedding and gets granted later due to delays in processing? Do you know what kind of communication we would get from Manila once the visa is processed? I know some embassies send emails when they start processing and when they have finished processing the visa but I think they only send an email once your documents are being returned to you when you apply through Manila?

Thanks again for your help, fingers crossed we hear something soon :-S
We don't have any information about what may happen to your FLR after the new rules come in.
We don't have many applicants that use Manila visa hub - most are US- or Canada-based and use NY visa hub.
They don't seem to communicate as delligently as UKBA in NY.
They may prioritise based on intended travel date, but I don't know.
You'll just have to wait and see. They take no responsibility for travel and wedding arrangements finalised prior to getting your visa - that's the risk you take.
 
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