Spouse Permit Requirements in South Africa?
Imagine falling in love with someone from a different country, and deciding to start your life together in a beautiful place like South Africa. However, before you can enjoy the sunshine and explore the stunning landscapes, there is a process you need to go through; obtaining a spousal permit which is a temporary residence permit.
The documents for a spousal visa in South Africa can seem daunting, but don’t let that stop you from pursuing your dreams. With the right information and support, you can navigate the process and start your new life with your loved one.
In this article, we’ll dive into the details of what you need to know to obtain a spouse visa in SA. We’ll cover everything where the paperwork is concerned.
What is a Spouse Visa?
A spouse permit for South Africa is a type of visa that allows foreign nationals who are married to South African citizens or permanent residents to live and work in South Africa for a specific period.
It is intended to enable couples to reunite and build a life together in South Africa. To obtain a spousal visa, applicants must meet certain requirements related to documentation, financial support, and other criteria.
The visa process can be complex and may take several months, but with the right information and preparation, it can be a successful and rewarding experience for couples looking to start their life together in this beautiful country.
Benefits of a Spouse Visa
Obtaining a spousal visa in South Africa can offer numerous benefits for foreign nationals who are married to South African citizens or permanent residence holders. Some of these benefits include:
- Living and working legally in South Africa for a specific period.
- Access to South African healthcare and education systems.
- The ability to open a bank account and obtain credit.
- Eligibility for a South African driver’s license.
- The opportunity to apply for permanent residency after 5 years.
- The ability to travel in and out of South Africa without the need for additional visas.
- The chance to start a new life with your spouse in a beautiful and diverse country.
Overall, a spousal visa in South Africa can provide foreign nationals with the opportunity to build a new life with their partner, access new opportunities and experiences, and enjoy all the benefits that come with living in this unique and dynamic country.
What are the documents required for the Spouse Visa in South Africa?
- Application form: You’ll need to complete an application form on the VFS website if you applying in South Africa and abroad you would need to complete the DHA-1738 form if you are submitting it at a South African embassy or mission.
- Valid Passport: Your passport must be valid for at least 30 days after the date you leave South Africa.
- Yellow Fever Certificate: If you have travelled or intend to travel from, through, or in direct transit through a yellow fever endemic area, you must have a yellow fever vaccination certificate. However, you do not need a certificate if you are only travelling in direct transit through the area.
- Police Clearance Certificate: You must provide an original police clearance certificate from each country where you have lived for 12 months or longer after turning 18, except for South Africa. The certificate must be no more than 6 months old at the time of submission. You do not need to provide a police clearance certificate from a foreign country if you are renewing or extending your visa.
- Medical Report: A medical report for South Africa for a spousal visa is a document that is needed by the South African Department of Home Affairs for all spousal visa applicants. The medical report must be completed by a qualified medical practitioner. The purpose of the medical report is to ensure that the applicant is in good health and is not a threat to public health. The report also helps the DHA to decide on the applicant’s visa application.
- Radiology Report: A radiology report for a spousal visa for South Africa is a document that is needed by the South African DHA for all spousal visa applicants who are 12 years of age or older. The purpose of the radiology report is to ensure that the applicant does not have active tuberculosis. Tuberculosis is a serious infectious disease that can be spread through the air. The DHA requires a radiology report for all spousal visa applicants to protect the public health of South Africa.
- Marriage Certificate: You must be legally married to a South African citizen or permanent resident. A marriage certificate is a document that proves that you are married. It is needed for all spousal visa applicants for South Africa. The certificate must be issued by the country where you were married.
- Spousal Affidavit: If you are applying for a spousal visa to South Africa, you must provide an affidavit stating that you are in a spousal relationship with a South African citizen or resident. You must also provide documentation proving that you live together and share financial responsibilities. If you have any children together, you must also provide information about them.
- Divorce Decree: The South African DHA requires you to include a divorce decree with your South African spousal visa if you have been divorced. This is because the Department of Home Affairs needs to verify that you are no longer married to your previous spouse. If you are still married to your previous spouse, you will not be eligible for a spousal visa to South Africa.
- Full or Specific Parental Rights: You need to provide a court order granting full or specific parental responsibilities and rights with your South African spousal visa if you have any children from a previous relationship. This is because the Department of Home Affairs needs to verify that you have the legal right to bring your children to South Africa.
- Death Certificate: The South African Department of Home Affairs requires you to provide a death certificate for your late spouse if you are applying for a spousal visa to South Africa. This is because the Department of Home Affairs needs to verify that your spouse is deceased. If your spouse is not deceased, you will not be eligible for a spousal visa to South Africa.
- Proof of Adoption: The South African Department of Home Affairs requires proof of adoption for spousal visa applications where applicable because they need to verify that the applicant is the legal guardian of the adopted child. This is important because the child will be considered a dependent of the applicant and will be eligible to apply for a visa as well.
- Legal Separation Order: A legal separation order is a court order that legally separates a married couple. This means that the couple is no longer considered to be married, but they are not yet divorced. A legal separation order can be granted for a variety of reasons, such as irreconcilable differences, abandonment, or imprisonment.
- Financial Means: You should provide 3 months’ bank statements for your spousal visa because it shows the South African Department of Home Affairs that you have the financial means to support yourself and your spouse while you are in South Africa. The bank statements should show that you have a steady income and that you have enough money to cover your living expenses.
The Qualifying Criteria:
- You must be married to a South African citizen or permanent resident.
- You must be able to prove your marriage, such as with a wedding certificate.
- You must be able to prove that you and your spouse are living together, such as with joint bank statements or rental agreements.
- You must be able to prove that you have the financial means to support yourself and your spouse while you are in South Africa, such as with bank statements or employment letters.
- You must be able to pass a medical examination and a security clearance.
There are no age requirements for a spousal visa to South Africa. However, you must be able to prove that you are legally married to your spouse.
If you are under the age of 18, you will need to provide written consent from both of your parents for your application.
To be eligible for a spousal visa to South Africa, you must show that you have the financial means to support yourself and your spouse while you are in the country. The amount of money you need to show is R 8500.00 per month.
If you are employed, you will need to provide proof of your income, such as payslips or a letter from your employer.
If you are not working, you will need to provide proof that your spouse can support you financially. This could be in the form of payslips, a letter from your spouse’s employer, or a bank statement showing that your spouse has enough money to support you.
If you are unable to meet the financial requirements for a spousal visa, you may be able to apply for a waiver. However, you will need to provide strong evidence to support your visa request.
It is important to note that the financial requirements for a spousal visa can change at any time. It is therefore important to check the latest requirements with the South African Department of Home Affairs before you apply.
South African Spouse Visa Application Process
The South African spousal visa process is a multi-step process that can be complex and time-consuming. It is important to be familiar with the requirements and the steps involved in the process before you begin.
The first step is to gather all of the documentation. This includes your passport, marriage licence, police clearance certificate, medical certificate, and financial statements. You will also need to complete the form and pay the visa fees.
Once you have gathered all of the documentation, you can submit your application at VFS which you first need to schedule an appointment with or if you are submitting abroad then this is done at the South African embassy or consulates. Your visa will be processed and you will be notified of the outcome of your application.
The processing time for a spousal visa can vary depending on the circumstances. However, it is generally expected that the process will take several months. If your visa is approved, you will be granted a spousal visa. You will also be eligible for permanent residency after five years of continuous residence.
Here are the steps involved in the South African spousal visa application process:
- Gather the required documentation.
- Complete the form.
- Pay the visa fees.
- Submit your visa request at VFS in SA or the South African embassy or consulate abroad.
- Wait for your visa to be processed.
- Receive your decision.
Completing the Application Forms for the spousal visa
The application form for a spousal visa in South Africa is a complex document that requires careful completion. Here are some tips for completing the form accurately and efficiently:
- Read the instructions carefully before you begin filling out the form.
- Make sure you have all of the required documentation before you start.
- Use black ink and print clearly.
- Do not leave any blank spaces.
- If you are unsure of how to answer a question, leave it blank and consult with an immigration lawyer.
- Proofread your application carefully before you submit it.
Please remember that submitting in South Africa means that you will complete the form digitally on VFS’s website. Submitting abroad means that you must complete the DHA-1738 form manually with blank ink.
Here are some of the sections you will need to complete on the application form:
- Personal Information: This section includes your name, date of birth, place of birth, passport number, and other personal information.
- Supporting Documents: You will need to provide supporting evidence to prove the information you have provided in your application. These may include your marriage licence, police clearance certificate, medical certificate, and financial statements.
Frequently Asked Questions About the Spouse Permit:
Can I apply for a Spousal Visa with a visitor visa?
Yes, you can apply for a spousal visa in South Africa while you are in the country on a visitor’s visa.
If I don’t qualify for the spousal visa which alternative visa can I apply for?
If you don’t qualify for a spousal visa, you may be eligible for a life partner visa. A life partner visa is a type of temporary residence visa that is available to foreign nationals who are in a permanent relationship with a South African citizen or permanent resident.
Can I work on a spousal visa or should I apply for one of South Africa’s work visas?
You can work on a spousal visa in South Africa, but you will need to apply for a work endorsement.
To be eligible for a work endorsement, you must:
- Have a job offer from a South African employer.
It is easier to apply for a work endorsement compared to applying for a work visa.
Can I start my own business on a spousal visa or should I apply for a business visa?
You can start your own business on a spousal visa in South Africa, but you will need to apply for an endorsement.
To be eligible for a business endorsement, you must:
- Register your business with CIPC
- Register your business with the South African Revenue Service
Can I study with a spouse visa or should I apply for a study visa?
Yes, you can study with a spouse permit in SA. However, you will need to apply for an endorsement to study.
To be eligible for a study endorsement, you must:
- Have been accepted at a South African educational institution which is registered with the Department of Education.