A spouse, civil partner, or durable partner can only be sponsored under the EUSS if the relationship was in place before the end of 2020.
Please note that, so far, all applications by unmarried partners made directly under the EUSS without first obtaining the family permit or having obtained the residence card (a route now closed to new applications), have been refused. This is important to point out, because time is running out and, if someone decided to make such an application now, it would probably end up being refused after the end of June deadline.


Unmarried/durable partners living in the UK

The deadline for unmarried partners already living in the UK to apply for an EEA residence card was the end of December.

Applications for EEA residence cards are no longer accepted.

Applications submitted before the end of last year are still being processed.



Unmarried/durable partners living outside the UK

Unmarried partners who meet the durable relationship criteria set out below can apply for an EEA family permit until the end of June, however, they will still be able to apply for a EUSS family permit after that.

This provision does not extend to other extended family members, such as siblings and other dependent relatives, who had to apply before the end of December.

Apply for an EEA family permit (EEA-FP).

Unmarried partners cannot apply directly for pre-settled status unless they have a valid family permit or EEA residence card (EEA-EFM).

You may be able to sponsor your unmarried partner if you meet the criteria for durable partners, set out on pages 14-15 of the Extended Family Members guidance:

Evidence required for durable partners

A durable relationship is an unmarried partnership which has normally continued for 2 years or more.

The evidence the applicant can provide may include:
  • proof that any previous relationship has permanently broken down, for examplea:
    • decree absolute for marriages
    • dissolution order for civil partnerships
  • evidence of cohabitation for 2 years, for example:
    • bank statements or utility bills in joint names at the same address
    • rent agreements
    • mortgage payments
    • official correspondence which links them at the same address
  • evidence of joint finances, joint business ventures and joint commitments, for example:
    • tax returns
    • business contracts
    • investments
  • evidence of joint responsibility for children such as:
    • a birth certificate or custody agreement showing they are cohabiting and sharing responsibility for children
  • photographs of the couple
  • other evidence demonstrating their commitment and relationship
You must always consider the individual circumstances of the application. For example, there may be instances when the couple have not been in a relationship for 2 years or more, but you are still satisfied that the relationship is subsisting and durable. This may be, for example, where the couple have a child together and a birth certificate showing shared parentage has been provided with evidence of living together.
The text above refers to EEA-EFM residence card applications, however, much the same criteria would apply to EEA family permits, as the idea is to establish a durable relationship.