spousal visa

Relief for spousal visa applicants

In-country change of status to spousal visa now allowed

VFS in South Africa has been instructed to allow visitors visa holders to change status from within South Africa.  In-country change of status will however only be allowed when the visitor wants to change to long-stay visitor visas or to a spousal visa.

VFS accepts all visa applications in South Africa on behalf of the Department of Home Affairs (DHA).  The instruction came directly from the DHA and was communicated to VFS staff by Kiran Abraham, Deputy General Manager in South Africa.

The changes will take effect immediately.

Previously, visitors had to submit visa change applications from their home countries.  This policy, which came into effect in 2014, was hugely controversial.

The decision follows the Cape Town High Court’s decision in Stewart v Department of Home Affairs that visitors should be allowed to apply for other visas from within South Africa in certain circumstances.

Industry insiders have welcomed the move.

Contact SAvisas.com for peace of mind and expert immigration advice.

Speak to a professional

Contact Le Roux Attorneys, South African Visa specialists about your visa application. Start by selecting one of the enquiry options below

Posted in blog, Fall in love with SA, Live In SA, News.


  1. Hi Ambrose. We are based in Cape Town. If this is too far for you, don’t hesitate to call us at +27 21 286 0057, because we can definitely help you from a distance.

  2. what of me that was banned for 5years and my wife is over there and she want me to come over what can I do ?

  3. My bro from india wants to come to sa and work or open a business here how can he go about doing that …. your help will be much appreciated

  4. hi I hv got married was in 2004 nd I got PRP nd I’d but I don’t have communicate with my ex wife she left me almost ten years .and I got married again in 2013 according to Muslims law . so I want to make our marriage in legle way can you plz assist me.

  5. Hey Satay. Unfortunately we do not arrange marriage services, but I suggest you contact the Department of Home Affairs. They can definitely help you.

  6. Hey Raymond.
    Do you mean that you are banned from South Africa?
    You are prohibited to enter South Africa, however, you could appeal to overturn the decision on the basis of good cause. You can read more about this on this page: http://www.savisas.com/banned-from-entering-south-africa/

    If you do want to make an appeal, please do send us an email to immigration@lr-inc.co.za because we can help you with this. Please also include the reason for the prohibition.

    Kind regards,
    Team SAVisas

  7. I paid lobola recently, do I qualify for a spousal permit with that type of marriage, (Customery)

  8. Hello! I was married 2007 till now , I had a 2year permit on my passport . Last year in May I aplied for a permanent resident permit nd it happens that my my permint expires while I was waiting for appointment . I went for the appointment they couldn’t help me , they say I must go to home affiars for the latter of good cause . Since then till now its a year nw I haven’t get the later yet from them nd still don’t have apermit . What else should I do about this situation? Thank you

  9. I lost every document of mine including the passport .But am holding a temporary permit that allows me to remain ,work and study in RSA can I be granted citizenship via marriage with this document?

  10. Please contact me i want to apply for a spousal visa with endorsements to work here in s.a . Please contact me about the requirements and your price structures.

  11. Hi there
    Need to apply wife’s permit extension
    What’s your fee?

  12. Does it means that if a foreign national married in SA so he/she could apply for permanent citizen like all European countries

  13. I wish to enquire if it is now possible to apply for a permanent residence from a ZSP permit if I have evidence that I have been in the country for more than 5 years and have been using some other permit before changing to ZSP. Again is it now possible to change from a ZSP permit to a general work visa/ permit.

  14. I want a busness permit but I don’t have the 5million and I also have a registered southafrican company what must I do

  15. Hey Stewart. Maybe we can assist you with this. The best is to send us an email at immigration@lr-inc.co.za and explain us your situation. We will see if and how it is possible to speed up the process.

  16. Dear Shafique. Could you send us an email to immigration@lr-inc.co.za, explaining your wife situation, so since when is she in South Africa, which permit does she have? Then we will get back to you as soon as possible.

  17. Good evening.my fiance is from the Philippines,but currently based in Angola.what are the requirements for him to obtain a business/working permit.it is very costly for him to go back to embassy in manila to apply for anything.is it possible to get a permit through Angolan embassy.

  18. Hey John. No you cannot. You need to apply for a new passport and have your current visa transfered to the new passport.

  19. Hey John Max. Foreign nationals married to South African citizens qualify for permanent residence after 5 years of marriage.

  20. Hi Lincoln Julius. The general rule is to be able to invest or have invested R5 million, but in certain cases applicants in some industries can apply for a waiver.

  21. Hey Juliet. If your fiance has legal status in Angola, they should be able to apply for a SA visa from Angola.

  22. Hi There, just want to ask if the spouse of SA national is still not allowed to work. I’m holding temporary residence visa. I just find it unfair becuase my husband is SA national.
    Thank you for your reply.

  23. hi
    I am using general work permit for 4 %11 months what can I do to apply for permanent residence? please I need your help

  24. Hy… l have a asylum is it possible for me 2 get a resident permit coz l almost hve 6years wth a asylum… Hw can l get helped

  25. Hie there I would to apply for study permits for my children two were born in S.A and 1 in Zim myself and my husband had Dzp permits and now on Zps how do we go about it the kids go to school here in S.A

  26. Hi, im a ghanaian n usingg general working permit, my permit is 5yrs n 2yrs remaining to expired, can I use the remaining 2yrs to cover my wife who is using asylum nw? Pls I need ur help urgently.

  27. Please I need critical skill permit and I don’t have any valid permit on my passport I have over stay issue how can I go about it I need your reply please

  28. Hello,

    VFS told me that I still have to apply from my home country. Where’s the order from DHA to VFS? When does it take place there?

  29. If someone come from India with visit visa and her husband has valid work permit holder can she apply to continue to reside with husband here via vfs?

  30. My wife with my two kids live in south africa with her pareints
    She has a relative visa and my father in law has southafrican id
    How i can join my family there while im in pakistan plz give me valid info plz plz plz

  31. Hi
    I want relative parmit but VSF first rejected my relative permit behalf my brother now what can I do

  32. We (from Holland) own a house in Yzerfontein, but do not have more than the 90 days permit. It is not clear to me where and how we have to apply for a longer stay visum. It is very unhandy to count days all the time we are here. But when we book a ticket you must now the return date. Can you help us out?

  33. Hi there,

    I got married in 2013 but i never had time to registered my marrige legally in home affairs.i am holding genral work permit and i have 1 child, we are custumry married Am i qualified to permanent residence.

  34. Hi Marjolein.

    Thank you for your message. I don’t know if you have any (work) obligations in the Netherlands, but you could apply for a Retirement Visa. There is only one requirement: You need at least R37,000 a month until you leave South Africa (which is about €2,158.75 according to most recent exchange rate). On the following page you find more information: http://www.savisas.com/retirement-visa-south-africa/

    We can help you with your retirement visa, in which we will also speed up the application process for you, since this could take a long while with The Department of Home Affairs. The best would be to send us your inquiry again in an email to immigration@lr-inc.co.za, and we will continue our conversation from there. Our consultants will explore your options and get back to you as soon as possible.

    Kind regards,
    Claire, SAVisas

  35. Hi Robert. Unfortunately the ZSP is a type of visa. In order to get an ID book you would have to be a permanent resident or a SA citizen.

  36. Hi Nkansah. As your wife is currently the holder of an asylum visa, we would not be able to assist her whilst she is still in South Africa. We can certainly assist her with a new visa application once she has returned to her home country. Please visit http://www.savisas.com/spouse-visa-south-africa and submit an enquiry and specialists in these matters will get back to you.

  37. Hello Andrew. We understand that VFS has not been allowing submission of applications of this nature. However, we do have written confirmation that we can submit these types of applications.

  38. Hello Adam. If the Standing Committee of Refugee Affairs certifies that you can remain indefinitely in South Africa, you would be eligible for permanent residency.

  39. Hello Fortunate. If your children are Zimbabwean citizens, they would have to return to their home country before submitting an application for study visas. We can certainly assist them once they have returned to Zimbabwe. Please visit http://www.savisas.com/study-visa-south-africa/ and fill in the assessment at the bottom of the page. An expert in this field will get back to you.

  40. Hi Tony. Unfortunately not. A spousal visa and a life partner visa have different requirements. Please visit our website for more information: http://www.savisas.com/. Feel free to submit an enquiry and a specialist in these matters will get back to you.

  41. Hi,

    I am married to an RSA citizen and have a son who is also an RSA citizen. I have been living and working in RSA since the end of 2008 on visitors 11.6. All this years I have been renewing this visa by myself. Recently I was not able to get all the docs in time and hence vfs didn’t accept my application to renew my visa. To be on the right side of law I left the country and came back in with a visitors 11.1. I resigned from work as visitors visa doesn’t allow me to work. Can I convert my visitors visa 11.1 back to visitors 11.6?

  42. Good day,

    I am South African and have been in a long-term relationship of 8 years with a dual national Angolan/Portuguese. We have all documents for Spousal Visa requirements in place but have yet to apply. Given the new change in rules, can my partner apply in SA through your services without having to leave to either Angola or Portugal? At the current rate, he enters with his Portuguese passport and is given a tourist visa for 3 months only. This obviously increases his risk of being questioned for his frequent travels into the country. We need a more permanent solution.
    Please advise.

  43. Good Day,

    You will be able to apply within the country and we will certainly be able to assist you. Please send an outline of your situation to immigration@lr-inc.com and a consultant will get back to you today.

    Kind regards,

  44. Good day Claire,

    i have been a recognized refugee for more than 5 years now, i went to the original place i obtained my refugee status form (TIRO Pretoria) to inquire about the process of obtaining an indefinite refugee status and then apply for a permanent residency.
    I was told that they do not have any clue of what the steps are, they only gave me a form to fill. I filled in that form and have been, for the past almost 2 years now, trying to locate the office of the standing committee of refugees affairs, their latest known address was on 266 Pretorius street Pretoria, that office has been closed for more than 3 years apparently.
    I have been desperately trying to email officials from the DHA to get any info, but i have literally been bounced from one official’s email to another with absolutely no solid answer or even clear indication of their offices or an email that could help…
    Do you perhaps have any idea of what i can do? Or maybe an email you can refer me to? Or any kind of assistance?

  45. Hi Stacey

    My brother in is on V list status currently and he was placed there without him being informed. He has business in South Africa and he is also married to a South african ciziten but was told he is banned from entering the country. He was deported while waiting for TRP application to be finalized. How does the process work having him come back to country. His wife recently went to visit him In India and was told by the south African Emabassy they could do nothing. He made an appeal to have the decision over turned but he was rejected. It wasnt his fault the process for his re application of the TRP took so long and he has proof he applied but he was deported before he could hear a decision.

  46. Hi Mishelle

    Thank you for contacting us. Please email this outline of your brother’s situation to immigration@lr-inc.co.za and include your contact detail and a consultant will get back to you to explain the process and advise you on a solution moving forward for your brother.

    Kind regards,
    The SAVisas Team

  47. Good day, tell me is you have a life partner permit and in the 2 years you end up separating, and you meet someone new, can you apply for change in your life partner

  48. Good day, tell me is you have a life partner permit and in the 2 years you end up separating, and you meet someone new, can you apply for change in your life partner

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