South Africa visa requirements are rigorous, but visas cater for a range of circumstances based upon the proposed length of time in the country and the purpose of the visit.
For short-term applicants travelling as tourists, or visiting friends and family, a Visitor Visa is all that’s required.
For those wishing to spend a more time in the country, to work, set up a business or study, a range of temporary residence permits are available along with permanent residence permits for those wishing to settle.
What are the Spousal Visa Benefits?
The benefit of migrating via a Spousal Visa is that candidates are assessed purely upon their marital status or the duration of their relationship.
Temporary residence permits allow successful applicants to live and work in South Africa with permission to seek and undertake employment.
In addition, candidates granted permanent residence will enjoy most benefits afforded to permanent citizens with some exceptions, e.g. voting rights.
Who is Eligible for this Visa?
Married applicants emigrating via this route on a temporary permit must present their marriage certificate with any application.
Applicants in a life relationship require a signed affidavit confirming the parties are in a permanent relationship excluding all others.
Life relationships must also be supported by documentary evidence, an aspect which can be difficult for independent applicants. Our experts guide you through the process, and help you locate relevant documents proving your relationship is legitimate.
Permanent Spouse Visas and Life-Partner Visas
Where candidates apply for spouse/life-partner immigration as a permanent option, the key requirement is the applicant must have been married to, or in a life relationship with, the sponsoring South African permanent resident or citizen for 5 years or more.
Any permanent residency visa issued then requires the applicant to prove the relationship still exists after 2 years, otherwise the permit can be revoked. Such restrictions are lifted after a total of 5 years.
Due to the time factor, it is common practice to apply for temporary residence and permanent resident status simultaneously, and our advisors can discuss this option with you.
Other Family Visas
Immediate family members can sponsor close relatives wishing to settle in South Africa. A Relatives Visa covers many familial relationships and enables families to live together in South Africa, whilst also providing a route to permanent residency and citizenship.
Working in South Africa
The Spousal Visa makes provisions for applicants to seek and engage in employment. Successful applicants may start a business, undertake a job or study, once the Department of Home Affairs grants an endorsement.
February 12, 2015