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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello! I am an American who has been living in the U.K. On a spousal Visa since January. I plan to apply for IDL when my probationary period is up.

A friend told me there is a maximum time I am allowed to be outside the country during this time, with the penalty being a Visa revocation. My husband travels backs to the States every other month and I wish to go back with him. Does anyone know if this is true, and if so, what the restrictions are? My understanding is that there is no time issue with the IDL Visa, please advise if you know anything to the contrary.

Thank you so much!

Maya
 

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theres a thread already on here with everything about travels outside the uk i think its called travel outside uk. lol im sure if you just search travel you will find it. but i think it was like a total of 90 days. dont quote me on that but search for that thread. it has peoples experiences and stuff and links to the site. :)
 

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Joppa or one of the other mods will hopefully be along soon. I've seen several posts on travel during the probationary period, like MRSREILLY, I think it's 90 days but I'm not sure.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yeah, this sounds right to me. I read something about 1 year 11 mo out of the 27 mo Visa. Boo! I was looking forward to all the travel prospects but I guess good things come to those who wait!
 

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I've just slogged through the UKBA site to find this (link follows quote):

Time spent outside the UK
The Immigration Rules do not say that you must have been in the UK for the entire 2 years of your visa or permission to remain. Your application to settle here will be judged on its merits, taking into account your reasons for travel, the length of your absences, and whether you and your partner travelled and lived together while you were outside the UK. If you have spent a limited time abroad in connection with your job, for example, this should not count against you.

However, time spent outside the UK does make a difference to applications for British citizenship. If you apply to be naturalised as the husband, wife or civil partner of a British citizen, you must show that you have been living in the UK for the last 3 years (the 'residential qualifying period'), and that you have spent no more than 270 days outside the UK during those 3 years. Also, you must have spent no more than 90 days outside the UK in the last 12 months of the 3-year period. (We have discretion to allow absences above the normal limits in some circumstances.)
UK Border Agency | Settlement

I'd take that as a WOOHOO, get packing and booking flights:)
 

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I'd take that as a WOOHOO, get packing and booking flights:)
Just to clarify one detail, you should make sure that none of your trips out of the country last over 90 days as well. You're allowed 90 days per year averaged out, a maximum of 90 days in the final 12 months and no single trip over 90 days at any point.

The UKBA site isn't very helpful on this topic but a (linked) summary of it can be found in the About the Test section of lifeintheuk . net, (sorry it's not linked, I'm not allowed to yet.)
 

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Just to clarify one detail, you should make sure that none of your trips out of the country last over 90 days as well. You're allowed 90 days per year averaged out, a maximum of 90 days in the final 12 months and no single trip over 90 days at any point.

The UKBA site isn't very helpful on this topic but a (linked) summary of it can be found in the About the Test section of lifeintheuk . net, (sorry it's not linked, I'm not allowed to yet.)
That would be if the time is to be considered for a citizenship application, not the ILR. Good point, though, because many who will apply for the ILR will later apply for citizenship.
 

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That would be if the time is to be considered for a citizenship application, not the ILR. Good point, though, because many who will apply for the ILR will later apply for citizenship.
You're right, getting my leaves to remain in a twist. People do get caught out by this though as it's stricter for citizenship than ILR.

To be completely clear though take it straight from section 9 of Form SET(O) for ILR applications:

"D2. Please confirm whether you have been outside of the UK for any single absence over 3 months or one or more absences which amount to more than 6 month in total during the 5 year period"

And from page 7 of the guide to Form AN for citizenship applications:

"To satisfy the residence requirement you should not have been absent for more than 90 days in the last 12 months. And the total number of days absence for the whole 5 year period should not exceed 450. If you are married to or in a civil partnership with a British citizen the total number of days absence for the whole 3 year period should not exceed 270"
 

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LOL, it IS a brain twister sometimes, I've got to where I don't say ILE, I say 'probationary visa' so that I don't confuse myself.

And luckily for me, any travel my husband is doing for his new job is travel within the UK. However, I'm sure the OP feels a lot happier knowing she can travel with her husband whilst on her probationary visa (ILE) and can reasonably expect consideration from the UKBA when she applies for her ILR (my highlights and underlinings):

Time spent outside the UK
The Immigration Rules do not say that you must have been in the UK for the entire 2 years of your visa or permission to remain. Your application to settle here will be judged on its merits, taking into account your reasons for travel, the length of your absences, and whether you and your partner travelled and lived together while you were outside the UK. If you have spent a limited time abroad in connection with your job, for example, this should not count against you.
For her it's a win-win as she will be travelling with her business travelling husband:)

I LOVE when it works!!
 

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Remember the time spent outside UK for naturalisation isn't set in stone and UKBA do exercise a degree of discretion, for example, if you have to return home for an extended period to look after a sick relative, or if you are posted abroad by a UK-based organisation you work for. But it's best to stick to the limits if you can.
 

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Remember the time spent outside UK for naturalisation isn't set in stone and UKBA do exercise a degree of discretion, for example, if you have to return home for an extended period to look after a sick relative, or if you are posted abroad by a UK-based organisation you work for. But it's best to stick to the limits if you can.
Very true. I know someone who was intercontinental cabin crew, spending about 50% of her time outside the UK flying between the UK and USA. She got her ILR fine.
 

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Remember the time spent outside UK for naturalisation isn't set in stone and UKBA do exercise a degree of discretion, for example, if you have to return home for an extended period to look after a sick relative, or if you are posted abroad by a UK-based organisation you work for. But it's best to stick to the limits if you can.
The UKBA have some public guidance on this ferreted away on their site. I can't link to it yet but there's a document called 'Indefinite leave to remain – calculating continuous period in UK' and a page called 'Discretion on absences from the UK during the residential qualifying period' which give some insight on how they deal with these cases.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Getting a little confused but I looked at Form Set(M) which I believe is te one that applies to me and at no point does it ask how long I have spent out of the U.K. So I'm guessing I'm ok to travel (nothing should be over 90 days, anyways) and to cover myself, put in a note about the travel (mentioning my son gets to see his Grandparents every time shouldn't hurt, either.)

Feedback?

Thanks everyone for the help and input!
 

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Getting a little confused but I looked at Form Set(M) which I believe is te one that applies to me and at no point does it ask how long I have spent out of the U.K. So I'm guessing I'm ok to travel (nothing should be over 90 days, anyways) and to cover myself, put in a note about the travel (mentioning my son gets to see his Grandparents every time shouldn't hurt, either.)
The UKBA don't entirely commit on this one. In the Family of settled persons section the below is found on the Husband, wife or civil partner of a British citizen or settled person - Settlement page:

'The Immigration Rules do not say that you must have been in the UK for the entire 2 years of your visa or permission to remain. Your application to settle here will be judged on its merits, taking into account your reasons for travel, the length of your absences, and whether you and your partner travelled and lived together while you were outside the UK. If you have spent a limited time abroad in connection with your job, for example, this should not count against you.'

The implication is that limited absences with good justifications (such as seeing parents) is ok but I also haven't been through the process myself so can't say that for certain.
 
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