Loading...

Follow Lexvisa | UK Immigration & Visa Solicitors on Feedspot

Continue with Google
Continue with Facebook
or

Valid

Earlier this week we received some wonderful news that our client’s (“the Applicant”) application for Further Leave to Remain as a Spouse had been successful. The Applicant was applying for leave as  Spouse after initially entering the United Kingdom on a Fiance visa. Our immigration team worked with the Applicant on both of his applications, first his entry clearance Fiance visa and then his subsequent Spouse visa.  

The case for Leave to Remain in the UK as a Spouse

The Applicant was an Albanian national who had met his partner on a messaging application. Shortly after they had met the couple recognised their mutual attraction for one another and started dating. Over the course of their relationship, the couple had regularly travelled together and spent memorable in each others company. The couple maintained their long-distance relationship with one another and decided to get married. In our initial consultation with the Sponsor, we were informed that the couple wished to marry in the United Kingdom and that they had already booked a venue. We informed the Sponsor that the Applicant must first apply for entry clearance as a fiance as this would allow him entry to the United Kingdom for a period of 6 months. Following their marriage, the Applicant would then be in a position to apply for further leave to remain as a Spouse. After the consultation, our immigration team were instructed on both applications. There were some complexities involved in this case as there were a few discrepancies in the Sponsor’s financial documents. However, our immigration team were able to investigate the matter further and provided a solution to their problem.

Requirements for a Leave to Remain in the UK as a Spouse

To submit a successful application for leave to remain in the UK as a Spouse Applicants must meet the strict requirements listed under the Immigration Rules and Appendix FM SE to the Immigration Rules. It is also important to consider the relevant Home Office policy guidance as these explain the requirements in finer detail. The requirements for a Further Leave to Remain application are very similar to those of the initial entry clearance spouse visa application. However, Applicant’s should be familiar with the exact requirements and the necessary documentation in support of their application. If you fail to meet any of the requirements your application may be refused and you may need to appeal the decision at the First Tier Tribunal. Appeals at the First Tier Tribunal are longwinded as the allocation of hearing dates can take anywhere between 6 to 12 months. The main requirements for a Further Leave to Remain application are as noted below:

  • Applicants must be able to show that their marriage is genuine and subsisting;
  • Applicants must meet the immigration status requirement;
  • Applicants must meet the English language requirement. From 1 May 2017, the Home Office introduced a new English Language requirement at Level A2 of the Common European Framework of References for Languages (CEFR) for Further Leave to Remain applications; and
  • Applicants must meet the Financial requirement (earn a minimum of £18,600) and Accommodation requirement.

It is important for Applicants to demonstrate that they meet all of the Home Office requirements listed under the Immigration Rules and the relevant appendixes. Applicants must ensure their application is prepared as strongly and diligently as possible as this will give them the greatest chance of success. Our specialist Immigration team have an in-depth understanding of the Immigration Rules and take great care and attention in preparing Further Leave to Remain applications and building strong legal arguments. Our bespoke service gives our clients the confidence to return to us to help prepare Home Office visa applications.

Using Legal Representation to submit a Leave to Remain in the UK as a Spouse

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration status. It is possible to instruct an immigration and visa legal representative to submit a Further Leave to Remain application.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your application succeeds, all necessary documents must be provided.

This can be a significant administrative task and you will need to submit the correct documentary evidence. The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application has the greatest chance of success.

Successful Further Leave to Remain in the UK as a Spouse

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your immigration status and the merit of your Further Leave to Remain application before your matter even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation and submission of your UK Visas and Immigration Application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients. LEXVISA is just minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to a successful application. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation to discuss your Further Leave to Remain Application.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

The post Success Story – Leave to Remain in the UK as a Spouse granted appeared first on London's Leading UK Immigration & Visa Lawyers | LEXVISA Solicitors.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

On 6 December 2018, the most recent Statement of Changes in Immigration Rules: Written Statement – HCWS1159 was released. One of the most significant changes mentioned is that the popular Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa route is to close. High net worth Tier 1 Applicants should first consult with an immigration specialist, such as our Immigration Team and fully qualified Immigration Solicitors before submitting a UK visa application to the Home Office. This is to ensure all of the stringent points based system requirements are met and demonstrated correctly.

What does the most recent Statement of Changes say about Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa route?

In the most recent Statement of Changes, it has been announced by Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes that the Home Office will be introducing a new Innovator route for experienced business people. This new route will replace the current Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) Visa route. There will supposedly be “a similar emphasis on endorsement by a business Sponsor who will assess Applicants’ business ideas for their innovation, viability and scalability”.

Furthermore, the Home Office will also be introducing the new Start-up Visa route, which was announced back in June 2018. This route will build on the current Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) route and will expand to ensure that the UK can benefit from a wider pool of overseas talent who are looking to establish new business in the UK.

Neither Caroline Nokes or the Home Office has yet to say when these changes will begin to be incorporated into the UK’s complex immigration system or even when the actual Statement of Changes will be released. Until then, the current system applies.

What are currently the main requirements for Applicants applying under the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa route?

Tier 1 Entrepreneurs must earn a total of 90 points in order for their application to be successful. This includes:

  • 75 points for Attributes;
  • 10 points for Maintenance; and
  • 10 points for the English language.

Those who wish to successfully apply for Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visas must demonstrate that they have £200,000 readily and available to invest in a new or existing UK business. The funds must be held in the Applicant’s name in a regulated financial institution for a consecutive 90 day period. Tier 1 Entrepreneurs must also satisfy the Genuine Entrepreneur Test and have a strong business plan that they are familiar with as it is often on this point where Applicants fail.

What are the other key changes mentioned in the Statement of Changes?

Last Thursday Caroline Nokes also announced the following changes:

  • The suspension of the Tier 1 (Investor) visa route, amid money laundering concerns which we discussed in our article last Friday;
  • Allowing architects to apply for the Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) visa;
  • Crackdown on the Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Religious Worker) route by “prohibiting Tier 5 Religious Workers filling roles as Ministers of Religion”;
  • Introducing a cooling-off period for Tier 5 (Temporary Workers), specifically for religious and charity workers;
  • Introducing the pilot scheme for seasonal agricultural workers (as was initially announced in September). The Immigration Minister stated that “the formal date of implementation for this pilot will be announced in due course”; and
  • Some other minor changes to Tier 1 and Tier 2 visas in regard to the wording of the rules/guidance.

If you wish to apply for any of the above-mentioned visas and are unsure of the process and requirements following this recent written Statement of Changes, then you should contact our Immigration Team immediately to book a consultation and discuss your matter in more detail.

Using Legal Representation to submit successful Applications under the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa route

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration status. It is possible to instruct an immigration and visa legal representative to submit success applications under the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa route.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your application succeeds, all necessary documents must be provided.

This can be a significant administrative task and you will need to submit the correct documentary evidence. The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successful Applications under the Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa route

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your immigration status and the merit of your visa and immigration application before your matter even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation of your immigration and visa application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients.  We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to successful immigration applications. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

The post Tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa route to be scrapped according to recent Written Statement of Changes appeared first on London's Leading UK Immigration & Visa Lawyers | LEXVISA Solicitors.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

In an attempt to crack down on organised crime and money laundering in the United Kingdom the UK government plans to suspend the Tier 1 Investor visa route. The Tier 1 Investor visa route was introduced for high net worth individuals who wish to invest their wealth in the United Kingdom in return for residency. At this stage, it is unclear when these plans will come into effect as the government has not provided an indication of when they plan to suspend this popular visa route. It is our advice that genuine investors submit an application soon rather than later.

Why is the government planning to scrap the Tier 1 Investor visa route?

The government plans to crack down on organised crime and money laundering and will suspend the Tier 1 Investor visa until they have put measures in place to prevent illegal activity. There were over 1000 Tier 1 Investor visa applications submitted in the last year. It has been suggested that the government has been triggered to suspend this route as a result of the Salisbury poisoning incident. However, if you are a genuine Tier 1 Investor you should not be too concerned as the suspension is not long-term and once the government has conducted their investigation the route shall be opened again. It is likely that there may be some changes in the Immigration Rules in relation to the demonstrating the source of the funds and the period the funds have been in the Applicants control.

Immigration minister Caroline Nokes said:

“The UK will always be open to legitimate and genuine investors who are committed to helping our economy and businesses grow. “However, I have been clear that we will not tolerate people who do not play by the rules and seek to abuse the system. “That is why I am bringing forward these new measures which will make sure that only genuine investors, who intend to support UK businesses, can benefit from our immigration system.”

What are the requirements of a Tier 1 Investor visa route?

The requirements for a Tier 1 Investor visa application are far more relaxed when compared with some of the other points based systems applications such as the Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa or the Tier 2 General work permit visa. The relevant rules for a Tier 1 Investor visa application can be found under Paragraph 245E of the Immigration Rules. In addition to Paragraph 245E of the Immigration Rules, the relevant Appendixes must be considered as well as the Home Office Policy Guidance.

 In order to apply for a Tier 1 Investor visa route Applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • You must not fall under the General Grounds of Refusal;
  • You must be at least 18 years of age unless you are applying as a Tier 1 Investor dependent;
  • You must provide an overseas criminal record certificate for any country you have continuously been present for at least 12 months in the last 10 years. The certificates must have been issued within 6 months of the Tier 1 Investor visa application;
  • You must have £2 million of our own money under your control and it must be held in a regulated financial institution. The money must be disposable in the UK; and
  • You must have a UK bank account with a regulated bank for investment purposes.

Unlike some of the other points-based system applications under this route, you will not need to show that you meet the English language requirement. Applicants are also exempt from meeting a maintenance requirement. However, this does not mean that Applicants can access public funds in the UK. Tier 1 Investor visa migrants must be self-sufficient otherwise they could struggle to meet the Tier 1 Investor visa extension application requirements.

Settlement Rights in the UK under the Tier 1 Investor Visa

One of the key attractions for the Tier 1 Investor visa is the potential to settle in the UK before the 5-year mark. In normal circumstances, Applicants can only settle once they have resided in the UK for 5 continuous years and meet the requirements for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) under the Immigration Rules. The Tier 1 Investor visa offers accelerated settlement for Applicants and their dependents. Ultimately, the settlement route would depend on the investment amount. The accelerated investment amounts are listed below:

  • £10 million investment allows settlement in 2 years;
  • £5 million investment allows settlement in 3 years; or
  • £2 million investment allows settlement in 5 years.

Another benefit for Applicants is that they are not required to meet the English Language requirement that must be met in other Points Based System applications such as Tier 1 EntrepreneurTier 2 Work and Tier 4 Student visa. The residency requirement is also very kind as it allows Applicants to spend up to 180 days outside the UK per year. There is no other visa category under the Immigration Rules that allows Applicants to spend 180 days outside the UK without breaking the residency requirement.

Using Legal Representation to Prepare a Tier 1 Investor Visa Application

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration status. It is possible to instruct an immigration and visa legal representative to submit a Tier 1 Investor Visa application.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your Tier 1 Investor Visa application succeeds, all necessary documents must be provided.

This can be a significant administrative task and you will need to submit the correct documentary evidence. The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your Tier 1 Investor Visa route application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successful Tier 1 Investor Visa Application

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your Tier 1 Investor Visa application and the merit of your Tier 1 Investor Visa application before your application even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation and submission of your Tier 1 Investor Visa application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients. LEXVISA is just minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to a successful Tier 1 Investor Visa route application. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

The post Update: Tier 1 Investor visa route suspension amid money laundering concerns appeared first on London's Leading UK Immigration & Visa Lawyers | LEXVISA Solicitors.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

When making a UK visa application on the basis of the Applicant’s relationship with their British, settled or EEA national partner, it is important that the genuine relationship requirement is satisfied; otherwise, the Home Office may view the relationship to be one of convenience and for the purpose of obtaining an immigration advantage. Our immigration experts have a vast amount of experience in preparing successful partner based applications, therefore Applicants should schedule a consultation to speak with one of our immigration Solicitors in order for us to assess whether the genuine relationship requirement, as well as the other conditions, are met.

What is the Genuine Relationship Requirement for Partner Based Visa Applications?

All UK partner-based visa applications; whether considered under the Immigration Rules or the EEA Regulations, must demonstrate that there is a genuine relationship between the Applicant and their settled Sponsor. The Home Office requires a substantial amount of evidence in order to determine whether the relationship is genuine and subsisting, otherwise, the marriage could be seen as a sham and for the purpose of the Applicant gaining an immigration advantage and there is no subsisting intention to live together as a married couple.

Under sections 24 and 24A of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999, as amended by section 55 of the Immigration Act 2014, a sham marriage or civil partnership is one in which:

  • one or both of the parties is not a British citizen or an EEA or Swiss national;
  • there is no genuine relationship between the parties;
  • either or both of the parties enter into the marriage or civil partnership for the purpose of avoiding UK immigration controls, including under the Immigration Rules or the Immigration (EEA) Regulations 2006.

Under European Union (EU) law marriages of convenience are defined as marriages contracted for the sole purpose of obtaining a right of free movement and residence under Directive 2004/38/EC (‘the Free Movement Directive’) to which someone would not otherwise be entitled. The key factor in a marriage of convenience is the absence of intention of the married couple to be involved in a genuine and subsisting marriage or relationship akin to marriage and the creation of a family unit.

What are the consequences of not demonstrating a Genuine Relationship?

If the Home Office is not convinced that the relationship between the Applicant and Sponsor is not genuine and subsisting, the application will first and foremost get refused. Both applications made under the Immigration Rules and the EEA Regulations can attract a right of appeal against the decision. If by the end of the appeals process the courts uphold the Home Office’s decision to refuse the partner application on the basis that the relationship is not deemed to be genuine and subsisting, then the Applicant will be removed from the UK and there will be doubt as to the genuineness of the relationship for future applications.

It is therefore extremely important that sufficient evidence is submitted with the initial application, in order to avoid the lengthy and costly appeal process.

Using Legal Representation to satisfy the Genuine Relationship Requirement for Partner Based Visa Applications

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration status. It is possible to instruct an immigration and visa legal representative to submit a partner application.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your application succeeds, all necessary documents must be provided.

This can be a significant administrative task and you will need to submit the correct documentary evidence. The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successfully satisfy the Genuine Relationship Requirement for Partner Based Visa Applications

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your immigration status and the merit of your visa and immigration application before your matter even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation of your immigration and visa application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

Our offices are located in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients.  We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to successful immigration applications. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

The post Satisfying the Genuine Relationship Requirement for Partner Based Visa Applications appeared first on London's Leading UK Immigration & Visa Lawyers | LEXVISA Solicitors.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

It is that time of the year where applications for a Standard Visitor visa increase, as families, wish to reunite and spend the festive Christmas period together in the UK. The Standard Visitor visa allows Applicants to enter the UK for leisure or business purposes or any other activity as long as it within the permitted activities under Appendix V of the Immigration Rules.  If you wish to spend Christmas in the UK with your family it is advised that you submit an application for a Standard Visitor visa soon. Processing times at this time of the year can be extended due to the large backlog of applications. It is imperative a well-prepared application is submitted to the UK Visas and Immigration department of the Home office.

What is a Standard Visitor Visa?

The Standard Visitor visa has replaced all the former categories of visiting such as the family visit visa, general visitor visa and child visitor visa. All applications must now be made under the Standard Visitor visa rules. You should consider this application if it is your intention to visit the UK for a short period for a specific reason such as spending Christmas with family. If your application for a Standard Visitor visa is granted you will be given a visa for 6 months. However, in some circumstances, it is possible to apply for a multiple entry Visitor visas which will give you a visa for either 2, 5 or 10 years. You can frequently visit the UK as long as no single visit exceeds 6 months.

What are the requirements for a Standard Visitor Visa?

This application is governed by the UK Immigration Rules. You will need to meet all the requirements of V4.2 to V10 of the visitor rules and you must be able to show that you are a genuine visitor. You must also show a clear intention to return to your home country. The Home Office will assess your credibility and intention to visit the UK. Therefore you must submit an easy to follow and transparent application explaining why you wish to visit the UK and what activities you will take part in. It is crucial for you to submit the mandatory documents and other supporting documents in support of your application.

To meet the requirements of UK Standard Visitor Visa:

  • Applicants must be at least 18 years old.
  • Applicants must plan to visit the UK for a maximum of 6 months and leave at the end of that period; and
  • Applicants must be able to show that you have enough money to support your stay in the UK and be able to accommodate yourself.

It is imperative you submit a well-prepared application because if your application is refused it will not attract a statutory right of appeal. Our solicitors and barristers have a proven method of submitting successful UK Standard Visitor Visa applications to the UKVI and are proud of our very high success rate with UK visa applications.

What you can and cannot do on the Standard Visitor Visa

If you are granted a Standard Visitor visa you can take part in any activities listed under the visitor visa rules but it is important that the activity is directly linked with the reason for visit provided in the entry clearance application. However, you cannot participate in any paid or unpaid work or stay in the UK for more than 6 months. You cannot access public funds or any benefits and you cannot apply to marry. It should be noted that you cannot switch into another visa from within the UK.

Using Legal Representation to submit a Standard Visitor Visa application

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration matter. You can instruct one of our immigration and visa legal representatives to successfully assist you with a Standard Visitor visa application. Our solicitors and Barristers will help you comply with the Home Office’s requirements and meet the Immigration Rules.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject Standard Visitor visa applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your Standard Visitor visa application succeeds, our solicitors and barristers will ensure all specified documents must be provided.

The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successfully submit a Standard Visitor Visa application

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your prospects of a Standard Visitor visa application before your application even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation and submission of an application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients. We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to a successful Standard Visitor visa application. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation to discuss your immigration matter or application.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

The post Spending Christmas in the UK on a Standard Visitor visa appeared first on London's Leading UK Immigration & Visa Lawyers | LEXVISA Solicitors.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

As we get closer to March 2019, the government faces further pressure to secure a Brexit deal which has the UK’s best interest at heart. In the last week, Prime Minister Theresa May’s draft Brexit deal has been approved by EU leaders but the deal has been criticised by a number of prominent Members of Parliament. It is yet to be seen if the draft Brexit agreement will receive consent from parliament. However, it is clear that there will be no alternative as Theresa May has rejected talks of an alternative to her Brexit deal. The government has made it clear that there will be no preferential treatment for EU citizens post Brexit. EU citizens in the UK are advised to submit an EU application to secure their status post Brexit. EU Citizens can apply for an EEA Residence Card or EEA Permanent Residence Card which will protect their status in the UK. Family members of EU citizens are also urged to make an application before March 2019.  

Applying for an EEA Residence Card or EEA permanent Residence Card pre-Brexit

An EEA Residence Card is a formal document, which confirms your right to live and work in the UK under European Law. You can apply for an EEA Residence Card if you are an EEA national or a non-EEA family member and your EEA family member is exercising their treaty rights as a qualified person or who has permanent residence in the UK. Under the EEA regulations, a qualified person is someone who is in the UK working, self-sufficient, studying or currently searching for work. There are additional conditions, which need to be satisfied with the latter. We often receive a large number of inquiries in regards to who qualifies as a family member.

EEA nationals and their family members who can show continuous residence in the UK for a period of 5 years can apply for an EEA Permanent Residence document. This document is equivalent to an indefinite leave to remain visa and allows EU nationals to freely reside in the UK without having to adhere to a strict set of immigration rules. This document gives unlimited permission to reside in the UK and does not have to be renewed. However, the document can be revoked by the Home Office if there are issues of suitability concerned such as criminal convictions or bad character.

Will there be a transition period post Brexit?

Once the UK officially leaves the EU in March 2019, there will be a transitional period during which the UK will continue to shares the same rights as other EU member states. During this transitional period, the government will introduce a settled status scheme will allow EU citizens living in the UK before the end of 2020 to apply to remain in the UK. After 2020 free movement of persons and goods will come to an end. It should be noted that this will depend on the draft Brexit agreement being approved by the UK parliament.

What is the Settled Status Scheme post Brexit?

The settled status scheme will be fully operating by 30 March 2019. In order to apply for under this scheme, EU nationals will have to prove to the Home Office that they have lived in the UK for at least 6 months in any 12 month period over a total of 5 years to be eligible for settled status. You can give your National Insurance number when you apply to allow an automated check of your residence based on tax and certain benefit records. Those you cannot show a total of 5 years continuous residence in the UK can apply for a pre-settled status document and you will then be able to apply for a settled status document once you qualify for it.

EU nationals who have successfully acquired Permanent Residence and hold a valid document certifying Permanent Residence will have an automatic entitlement to apply to switch into the settled status scheme without having to meet any additional requirements. The settled status document will be governed by the Immigration Rules. Further, the Home Office has indicated that there will be a streamlined and cost-effective method in applying under the settled status scheme.

Using Legal Representation to submit an EU application post Brexit

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration matter. You can instruct one of our immigration and visa legal representatives to successfully assist you with an EU application post Brexit. Our solicitors and Barristers will help you comply with the Home Office’s requirements and meet the Immigration Rules.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject EU applications post Brexit which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your EU application post Brexit succeeds, our solicitors and barristers will ensure all specified documents must be provided.

The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successfully submit an EU application post Brexit

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your prospects of an EU application post Brexit before your application even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation and submission of an application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients. We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to a successful EU application post Brexit. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation to discuss your immigration matter or application.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

The post What does the Brexit deal mean for UK Immigration and EU nationals? appeared first on London's Leading UK Immigration & Visa Lawyers | LEXVISA Solicitors.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

The recent determination of Kousar & Ors v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] EWCA Civ 2462 (“Kousar”) highlights how easy it can be to submit an invalid visa application. Serious issues can arise from invalid visa applications, as during the process of having to submit a fresh valid application may lead to some Applicants unwittingly becoming overstayers, as was the case in Kousar. Our specialist immigration team ensure all of our clients’ applications are valid before they are submitted, in order to avoid any invalid visa applications being made and avoid the hassle and expense of the complex immigration appeal process. Contact us today in order to book a consultation with our solicitors.

Invalid Visa Applications Case Study: Background to Kousar

The Appellant initially entered the UK as a Tier 4 (General) Student in December 2010 and her leave as a student was extended until 13 August 2014. The day before this leave expired, the Appellant made an in-time application for further leave to remain as a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) migrant. Although the Appellant had enough funds to pay the application fee and she provided her bank details on the payment page, she did not tick the box on the form which authorises the transfer of the fee. Therefore the Secretary of State (“SSHD”) treated the Appellant’s application as invalid and wrote to the Appellant on 15 August 2014 informing her of the same.

The Appellant then submitted a further application for further leave to remain, however as her previous Tier 4 leave had expired on 13 August 2014, the Appellant had no valid leave in the UK and therefore had no right of appeal. Although this further application was valid, it was refused on 21 October 2014 on merits.

The Appellant initially challenged the SSHD’s decision on the validity of her first application by way of a Judicial Review claim before the Upper Tribunal on 19 January 2015.  The matter was considered on the papers and the judge refused permission to apply for Judicial Review on 6 August 2015 because it was unarguable that the Appellant had made a valid application for leave to remain before her expiry of her leave. The judge further concluded that it was unarguable that the Appellant was entitled to a right of appeal in respect of that application. The Appellant also sought to challenge the decision that the original application was invalid by way of an attempted appeal to the First-Tier Tribunal (“FtT”), which was filed on 17 December 2014.

Invalid Visa Applications Case Study: Facts to Kousar

The appeal was heard on 21 October 2015. The Appellant’s representatives relied on the guidance in Basnet (validity of application – respondent) [2012] UKUT 00113(IAC) (“Basnet”) and the “evidential flexibility” policy. Basnet established that the “validity of the application is determined not by whether the fee is actually received but by whether the application is accompanied by a valid authorisation to obtain the entire fee that is available in the relevant bank account”. Paragraph 34 of the Immigration Rules currently governs the validity of immigration applications. However, at the time of the Appellant’s application the validity of applications was contained under Rule 34A(iii) and (iii):

ii) any specified fee in connection with the application or claim must be paid in accordance with the method specified in the application form, separate payment form and/or related guidance notes, as applicable,

(iii) any section of the form which is designated as mandatory in the application form and/or related guidance notes must be completed as specified.

 Further, paragraph 34C states:

34C. Where an application or claim in connection with immigration for which an application form is specified does not comply with the requirements in paragraph 34A, such application or claim will be invalid and will not be considered.

Therefore the rigor of the rules meant that there is no discretion in such situations.

The “evidential flexibility” policy under paragraph 245AA of the Immigration Rules was also not found to apply in the Appellant’s case. The Appellant’s appeal was therefore refused.

Access the full judgement here: Kousar & Ors v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] EWCA Civ 2462 | LEXVISA Immigration Lawyers London

How to avoid making Invalid Visa Applications

The best advice in avoiding making invalid visa applications is to ensure the form is read through thoroughly before it is submitted. It is advisable to seek the assistance of legal representatives in order to prepare a UK visas and immigration application, such as our immigration team. We pride ourselves on our attention to detail and prepare our clients applications as strongly as possible to ensure they have the greatest chance of success. Furthermore, with the Home Office introducing the new online forms for further leave to remain applications, it will soon be impossible for applicants to ‘forget’ to tick the box confirming the authorisation for payment.

Using Legal Representation to avoid submitting Invalid Visa Applications to the Home Office

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration status. It is possible to instruct an immigration and visa legal representative to avoid submitting invalid visa applications to the Home Office.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your application succeeds, all necessary documents must be provided.

This can be a significant administrative task and you will need to submit the correct documentary evidence. The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successfully avoid submitting Invalid Visa Applications to the Home Office

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your immigration status and the merit of your visa and immigration application before your matter even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation of your immigration and visa application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

Our offices are located in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients.  We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to avoid submitting invalid visa applications. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

The post Invalid Visa Applications Case Study: Kousar & Ors v SSHD [2018] EWCA Civ 2462 appeared first on London's Leading UK Immigration & Visa Lawyers | LEXVISA Solicitors.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Last night EU leaders approved an agreement outlining the UK’s formal departure from the European Union. However, this agreement is still pending parliament approval and the current division suggests that there is a long way before an agreement is confirmed. A number of prominent Members of Parliament have resigned since the draft agreement in an attempt to boycott the agreement. The uncertainty is making EU nationals increasingly nervous as it leaves many without assurance not knowing what their status will be in March 2019.  It is the perfect time for EU nationals to apply to become a British Citizen and secure their status in the UK.

What does it mean to be a British Citizen?

Becoming a British citizen is a delightful privilege for people from all around the world. Once a person has secured British citizen they will formally belong to the UK with unrestricted permission to reside in the UK. British citizens can apply to have their family members join them and they can also access public services such as the National Health Service. British citizens also have an unrestricted right to work in the UK and are able to participate in local and national elections. There are a number of different ways to become a British citizen under the immigration rules and the British Nationality Act 1981. Under some routes such as the registration process under the British Nationality Act 1981 individuals can apply to register their citizenship instantly. There are also other routes where Applicants must show their residence in the UK for a period of 5 years and permanent residence status.

How to apply to become a British Citizen?

A British citizen application is made under the British Nationality Act 1981. The most common way of obtaining British Citizenship is by applying for Naturalisation. Naturalisation is often referred to as a privilege. There are two categories under which an application for Naturalisation can be made to obtain British Citizenship under the BNA 1981. The first category is applying in your own right under Section 6 (1) of the BNA 1981. This can be achieved by spending five continuous years in the UK and subsequently holding settled status for a period of one year.

The basic requirements for a British Citizenship application are noted below:

  • You must be 18 years of age or over;
  • You must be able to demonstrate that you are of sound mind and good character;
  • You must consider the UK as your principal place of home;
  • You must meet the residency requirement and not have excessive absences from the UK;
  • You must meet the English language requirement and show you have sufficient knowledge of life in the UK.

Nationals of majority speaking English countries are not required to show a formal speaking and listening qualification. You may be able to meet the English language requirement by providing your Birth Certificate or Identification document with your British Citizenship application. Those wishing to apply for British Citizenship should consult with a member of our expert immigration team so we can consider the eligibility criteria and explore whether, among other requirements, they meet the good character and residency requirements.

How we can assist with a British Citizen application?

Our solicitors can guide you through the British citizen application process and prepare outstanding legal representations/submissions which focus on how you meet the requirements listed under the British Nationality Act 1981. We also focus on the relevant policy guidance on meeting the good character requirement as this was one of the major obstacles in these types of applications. There is no statutory definition given for good character so there is no fixed way of meeting this requirement. Our solicitors are able to work closely with you and can give you access to our specialist immigration team at any time you require assistance. It is important that a well-prepared application is submitted and presented in a clear way so there is no confusion. Often applications which are not prepared strongly or are not presented clearly are refused by caseworkers.  In addition to the legal representations, our team of solicitors also provide substantial reviews of your documents to ensure that you submit the correct documentary evidence in the correct format, which meets the Home Office’s requirements.

Using Legal Representation to submit a British Citizen application

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration matter. You can instruct one of our immigration and visa legal representatives to successfully assist you with a British citizen visa application. Our solicitors and Barristers will help you comply with the Home Office’s requirements and meet the Immigration Rules.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject British citizen applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your British citizen application succeeds, our solicitors and barristers will ensure all specified documents must be provided.

The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successfully submit British Citizen application

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your prospects of submitting a British citizen application before your application even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation and submission of an application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients. We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to a successful British citizen application. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation to discuss your immigration matter or application.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

The post Brexit Update: How to become a British Citizen before the UK’s departure from the EU appeared first on London's Leading UK Immigration & Visa Lawyers | LEXVISA Solicitors.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

There is a UKVI Tier 4 Sponsor Premium Service which is designed to offer Tier 4 sponsored institutions an enhanced level of support in sponsoring overseas students and their immigration needs. The Tier 4 Sponsor must be eligible to apply and can be accessed through the Sponsor Management System (“SMS”). To get advice on the Tier 4 Premium Service, it is best to contact our specialist sponsor licence immigration team who are happy to arrange a consultation with our qualified immigration solicitors.

What is the Tier 4 Sponsor Premium Service?

The Tier 4 Sponsor Premium Service was first introduced in May 2014 and offers a range of services to Tier 4 Sponsors in order to give greater support and tailored advice. Some of the services include:

  • Allocation of a licence manager and regional account manager – The licence manager is the first point of contact regarding any enquiries relating to an academic institutions’ Tier 4 Sponsor Licence or Tier 4 migrant. A regional account manager will be available to support the sponsor licence manager with more complex issues;
  • Student immigration history details – With permission of the Tier 4 migrant, information can be provided to the Tier 4 Sponsor regarding the students’ immigration history and can be carried out within 3 working days; quicker than receiving files from a Subject Access Request (“SAR”);
  • Priority treatment on changes to the Tier 4 Sponsor Licence – Requests to make changes to a Tier 4 Sponsor Licence can be carried out within 10 working days, however, basic compliance assessments can take up to 18 weeks to be completed; and
  • Management information reports on CAS allocation – Users of the Tier 4 Sponsor Premium Service will receive a monthly report which details the CAS certificates that the academic institution has used in the last 3 months.

The application is usually considered within 10 working days and s of today, the Tier 4 Sponsor Premium Service costs £8,000 for a 12 month period.

The Tier 4 Sponsor Premium Service cannot consider any application which is made outside of the Immigration Rules or consider Tier 4 migrant applications quickly; however, with the permission of the applicant, updates on the progress of the application can be given.

How do I become a Tier 4 Sponsor?

In order for an academic institution to register overseas students from outside the European Economic Area (EEA), they will need to hold a valid Tier 4 Sponsor Licence and will appear on the government’s official register of licenced sponsors. There are several key requirements that academic institutions need to satisfy before the Home Office will grant the Tier 4 Sponsor Licence such as educational oversight, eligibility and suitability. Tier 4 Sponsors will also need to assign the sponsorship management roles to key personnel.

Home Office compliance is extremely importing with regard to Tier 4 Sponsor Licence applications, therefore academic institutions who wish to make a Tier 4 Sponsor Licence application are advised to seek professional legal assistance. Contact our business immigration team to arrange a consultation and receive expert advice on Tier 4 Sponsor Licence applications.

Using Legal Representation for advice on the Tier 4 Sponsor Premium Service

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration status. It is possible to instruct an immigration and visa legal representative in order to advise on the Tier 4 Sponsor Premium Service.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your application succeeds, all necessary documents must be provided.

This can be a significant administrative task and you will need to submit the correct documentary evidence. The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successfully use the Tier 4 Sponsor Premium Service

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your immigration status and the merit of your visa and immigration application before your matter even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation of your immigration and visa application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients.  We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key to successful immigration applications. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

The post UKVI Update: Tier 4 Sponsor Premium Service appeared first on London's Leading UK Immigration & Visa Lawyers | LEXVISA Solicitors.

Read Full Article
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

On 6 July 2012, the former 14-year route to settlement was replaced with the 20 years long residence visa. This means Applicants without immigration status in the United Kingdom must now reside continuously for 20 years before they can apply to regularise their status. Unlike other visas, the 20-year long residence route is the only visa application which does not require immigration status at the time of submission. If your application is successful you will be granted limited leave to remain with a view to settlement after 10 years of lawful residence.   

What is the 20 years long residence route?

Prior to 6 July 2012, Applicants without immigration status in the United Kingdom could apply for settlement under the Immigration Rules after 14 years. On 6 July 2012, the Home Office amended their rules and introduced a new provision under rule 276 in which Applicants without immigration status would have to wait 20 years before they could apply to regularise their status. The 20 years long residence route is for those who have been continuously resident in the United Kingdom for a consecutive 20 year period irrespective of their immigration status in the United Kingdom. The 20 years long residence route is an ideal choice for those are have not been able to secure their status and have been deemed as over-stayers.

What are the requirements for the 20 years long residence visa application?

The requirements for a 20 years long residence visa application are similar to the 10-year route. The key difference being there is no immigration status requirement for the 20 years long residence application. The requirements for this application can be found in the UK Immigration Rules and in particular under paragraph 276ADE of the Immigration Rules.

The main requirement for this application is that you must have lived continuously in the United Kingdom for at least 20 years. If you are claiming you have acquired 20 years of residence it is up to you to provide the correct evidence of the same. Without the correct evidence, your application will struggle as the Home Office may consider your case not to be credible. Continuous residence is defined in paragraph 276A of the Immigration Rules. Continuous residence will only be broken if you have absences which exceed 6 months in any given year in the qualifying period. In addition to this, you must also show that you meet the suitability requirements by showing that you are of good character. There is no statutory definition given to the term “good character” therefore there is no fixed way of showing that you have good character. If you have been convicted of a criminal offence and you subsequently received a custodial sentence your chance of applying for this visa becomes harder. However, it does not mean you cannot apply for this visa but it means your application must be prepared by specialist immigration solicitors who can prepare strong legal submissions using the legal framework in support of your case.

You can strengthen your case if you can show your ties and connections to the United Kingdom. The Home Office will always give consideration to Article 8 factors.

Will I get Indefinite Leave to Remain if my 20 years long residence application is successful?

The 20 years long residence visa can lead to indefinite leave to remain but it is not an automatic right. In most cases, the Home Office will issue a discretionary visa for a period of 30 months which must then be renewed at regular intervals (until you reach 120 months). Once you have acquired 10 years of lawful status in the United Kingdom you can then apply for indefinite leave to remain.

Using Legal Representation to submit a 20 years long residence visa application

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on the law and your immigration matter. You can instruct one of our immigration and visa legal representatives to successfully assist you with a 20 years long residence visa application. Our solicitors and Barristers will help you comply with the Home Office’s requirements and meet the Immigration Rules.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your 20 years long residence visa application succeeds, our solicitors and barristers will ensure all specified documents must be provided.

The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successfully apply for a 20 years long residence visa application

Our team of solicitors and barristers bear in mind the paramount duty of all legal representatives to act in your best interest whilst complying with the strict letter of the law. Our team of specialists can be distinguished from other law firms with our client-tailored approach and scrutiny of options available to you from the outset. We will be able to advise you in respect of the merits of your 20 years long residence visa application by providing you with advice from our leading team of solicitors before your matter even reaches the Home Office. We can assist you with the preparation of your 20 years long residence visa application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant rules.

If you wish to consider your options, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your matter and if necessary advise you of the next steps you should take in a consultation.

We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients.  We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

If you need professional legal advice about submitting a successful 20 years long residence visa application please contact us for a case assessment on 02071830570. You can also reach us via our contact form.

The post Applying for settlement under the 20 years long residence route appeared first on London's Leading UK Immigration & Visa Lawyers | LEXVISA Solicitors.

Read Full Article

Read for later

Articles marked as Favorite are saved for later viewing.
close
  • Show original
  • .
  • Share
  • .
  • Favorite
  • .
  • Email
  • .
  • Add Tags 

Separate tags by commas
To access this feature, please upgrade your account.
Start your free month
Free Preview