As the thread has been updated I also include here the original post containing example letters of support from the original thread:-
I have been asked on a number of occasions to supply examples of what a supporting letter looks like…
I want to make it very clear from the start that the advice I offer below is “my opinion only”…
Like a lot of things to do with the application procedure and by the very nature of the process, each application will be different and therefore so should any supporting letters.
A supporting letter is not a legal requirement and the application cannot be rejected if one is not included, however, as I hope to show, it can be worth the effort if done correctly it can have a lot of positive influence regarding the application.
We should look first at why we want to include a supporting letter, after all, we have provided every scrap of factual evidence to show the ECO we have a real relationship, we have included bank statements and housing details and proof of this and that…. Why do we need to include a supporting letter?
In my opinion, a supporting letter should be used to tie all the bits of a relationship together with the supplied factual documents; it’s like a glue, gluing all the factual bits together to make a strong picture. It is also the one place where you can “free word” to an extent, say something that you want to get across to the ECO. At the same time, if worded correctly, it can give a very strong subliminal relationship message / impression to the ECO, there is no set rule as what to say or not to say.
This is also the place where you can inject a little (and only a little) personal feeling into the process. I don’t think it hurts to say the reasons you want to be together are because you are in love, just don’t go overboard and end up writing a love novel. One page is ideal, two if you must….
As you will be able to see by now, the details included by one individual may not be suitable or even make sense for another persons application. So, in reality, you wouldn’t want to use a letter that was generic anyway…. It would detract from the whole ethos of it.
So, as promised, below are two letters that can be used as thought provoking examples, not to be copied word for word.
There are two letters:-
- One from the sponsor, gluing the factual stuff together, drawing the ECO’s attention to points and referencing the required documents, drawing a very brief picture of the relationship but adding strength to the application.
- One from the applicant, I know it’s not normal practice, but some do want to include one and it can be used to support the information contained in the sponsors letter but also, at the same time, come from a slightly more human angle as well, adding another depth of colour. I know some may not agree with this but I have said “it is just my opinion!” Anything to strengthen the application is good in my book. Just know when to stop and say enough is enough!
An example Applicants Supporting letter:-
Entry Clearance Officer
Dear Entry Clearance Officer,
Letter from XXXXX in support of my application for a Settlement Visa
My name is XXXXX, I am writing this letter to support my application for a Visa so I can go and live with my husband ZZZZZ in England.
My husband has explained to me that I don’t have to write a letter to you, but I want to write one the same as him and have asked him to help me. I am not always sure of the right words to say, so he has helped me a little, but the words are true and my own from my heart.
This paragraph could contain some personal information about how you met, trips to Thailand, getting engaged, married, etc.
My parents are very happy that I married ZZZZ and see that we are in love so much, he is a good husband for me. They are happy for me to go to England to live with my husband. They have seen pictures of his house and where we will live in England.
My husband has taken all his holiday time to be with me this year. We have spent time in my home at my village with my family and also we have gone away by our self for a holiday together. My husband supports me financially when he is not in Thailand; I live in my parent’s house in the village and help on the family rubber farm.
I hope we have done enough to show you that we truly love each other and want to spend our life together. My husband will come back to Thailand and get me so I don’t have to travel alone when I get the visa.
Our plan is to be together in England in early December, he has been allowed to take some extra holiday to cover for this and he can then spend some time with me at Christmas and New Year before he has to go back to work.
Together, we have collected all the records and information to support this application for a visa, but my husband has arranged it and put it in this folder for me.
An example of a sponsors letter:-
Entry Clearance Officer
Dear Sir or Madam
Letter of support for Mrs XXX’s Settlement Visa Application
I write in support of my wife, Mrs XXX’s application to settle with me in the United Kingdom.
I, Mr ZZZ, am a British National and a professional (Occupation); I have been in my current employment for (Number) Years. I am financially sound and able to support my family as you will see from the documented evidence attached in “Section 7” of this supporting documents folder.
I am legally married to Mrs XXX. Previous to our marriage, Mrs XXX had not been married, I was divorced with one child who lives away from home and is self-supporting. Our certificate of marriage is contained in “Section 3” of this folder.
For the sake of clarification: Mrs XXX has kept her maiden name, ensuring that her TB Certificate, A1 English Pass, Passport, ID Card, Visa Application, etc, are in the same name. Our reasoning is that it will be less problematic if all her documentation relates, when booking a ticket and traveling to England. She will change it at a later date.
Our Relationship History
Trip 1: We first met on (Date) whilst I was on holiday in Thailand visiting friends. Mrs XXX was visiting her Aunt, we dated and spent a lot of time together during the remainder of my time in Thailand and we developed a close friendship that progressed into the early stages of a relationship, as detailed in “Section 8” of this folder.
I returned to the UK, we remained in contact and the relationship developed, we made plans that I would return to Thailand as soon as possible and subject to my work commitments. My employers agreed that I could take an extended period of leave for one month duration, although some of it would be unpaid.
Trip 2: I subsequently travelled back to Thailand on (Date)), Mrs XXX met me at Bangkok airport and remained with me constantly throughout this second trip, during this time our feelings and our love for each other grew, and our relationship became more serious. I visited her home village where I met many members of her family and, after we had discussed our future together, I asked her parents' permission to marry, happily they agreed and we became engaged.
I returned to England (Date) as originally planned. During the following six months we were in daily contact, we talked constantly discussing our future plans, we communicate by Skype phone or on Skype web cam, we also sent each other SMS messages, e-mail, cards, etc; evidence of our contact is contained in “Section 9” as part of this supporting documents folder.
Trip 3: After much planning, I returned to Thailand, on (Date) and we were legally married at my wife's Amphur (Date), this was followed by a traditional Thai Buddhist wedding with family members and friends. Obviously, with the distance and cost, it was prohibitive for all my family to attend - but they fully support our relationship and I am proud that my son travelled with me from the UK to represent my family and act as my "Best Man". A certified copy of my passport, showing visit stamps is attached in “Section 4” of this folder.
I am a salaried professional in full time employment, with a gross salary of (£££) per annum. In addition, I am also in receipt of a “senior managers - company benefits package” this includes a company car, free fuel, mobile telephone and calls for company and private use. Confirmation of my employment is contained in this supporting documents folder in “Sections 6”
My salary allows me to live reasonably well in the UK, with an excess of income over expenditure, enabling me to have some savings. I am already supporting my wife whilst she remains in Thailand and am confident that I can show I am equally able to support Mrs XXX at our home in the UK.
Mrs XXX wishes to eventually work in the UK to enable to contribute to the “financial pot” and we have discussed various positions that might be suitable for her. Financial evidence is supplied in “Section 7” of this supporting documents folder.
I own a three bedroom property in the village of (location); I provide evidence and confirmation of the suitability of my home, supporting information re my mortgage etc, this can be found in “Section 5” of this supporting documents folder.
At the time of writing this letter, I am about to return home to the UK, where my time will be spent decorating our house and planning our future together. Our intention is that I return to Thailand as soon as Mrs XXX obtains her Visa so we can travel together, back to our home in the UK.
I would like to mention that we only began to retain evidence of our relationship from (Date) (as it was not until then that we had discussed marriage, and realised that we would require “relationship evidence” to apply for any future Visa). Prior to (Date) we did not have the reason or forethought to keep everything, although we have been able to find and include some items of evidence from this time, as detailed in “Section 8”.
I trust that we have been able to provide sufficient evidence that we are in a genuine, loving and subsisting relationship, and that I am able to fully support my wife in our home in the UK.
I thank you for taking the time to read this letter of support, If you require additional information, I can be contacted in the UK on (Telephone Number) at any time, day or night.
I hope you can see from the above letters how;-
- references have been made to sections of the supporting evidence folder
- each letter supports the other
- the subliminal messages re time together, love, etc.
Hope the above helps…… But remember…. It’s only my opinion, but it worked for me….. And DON’T JUST COPY AND PASTE !