Spouses and Children Now Able to Change Status in South Africa!

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Newly announced changes to South Africa’s immigration law means that it is now possible for foreign partners and children of South African permanent residents and citizens to apply for long-term visas granting them more rights and privileges. Great news for foreigners living in South Africa!

On 28 June 2019 judgment was delivered in the Constitutional Court of South Africa declaring regulation of the immigration regulations unconstitutional in so far as foreign spouses and children of South African citizen and permanent residents are concerned.

Before Directive 7 of 2019 of the South African Immigration act was passed earlier this month foreign spouses, partners and children of South African citizens and permanent residents who entered the Republic on a visitors’ visa were unable to change their visa status as their circumstances changed.  This meant that they were unable to enjoy the benefits of a Relative Visa or even obtaining a Work Visa.

The amendment to the law means that spouses or partners and children of South African citizens and permanent residents may now opt to travel to South Africa with for instance a tourist visa and apply in South Africa for a longer term work or study visa.