Appeal UK Visa Refusal: A Simple Guide to The UK Immigration Appeal Procedure Process
Appealing UK Visa Refusal seem daunting, which is why investing in expert immigration law advice from an experienced lawyer is worth its weight in gold.
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If your UK visa application has been rejected by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI), you are likely to be considering your options. It is recommended that you seek right legal advice as nearly half of UKVI decisions which are appealed are overturned. This is causing a great deal of concern within the legal community as it points to signs of a flawed government immigration system.
The Law Society, which represents solicitors in England and Wales, says the number of appeals being upheld has been increasing for the past three years, according to Ministry of Justice figures.
“Almost 50% of UK immigration and asylum appeals are upheld – clear evidence of serious flaws in the way visa and asylum applications are being dealt with,” the organisation’s President Joe Egan told the BBC.
“We know there is good practice in the Home Office and officials who clearly want to make a difference, but each error or delay may – and often does – have a devastating effect on someone’s life,” he added.
Do I Have the Right to Appeal my Immigration Refusal?
Since 6th April 2015, the only ground for appeal for Points-Based-System visas is one based on human rights. This means that unless you can show that by refusing your visa, the British Government is breaching its obligation to respect your rights provided by the European Convention of Human Rights (ECHR), you will not be permitted to appeal to the courts.
For this reason, it is vital to work with an immigration lawyer when applying for a Points-Based-System visa. If there is a possible human rights ground which can be employed should your application be refused, they can ensure it is included with your initial submission.
What are the Main Human Rights Grounds for Appeal?
The main grounds for a human rights appeal in immigration law are under Article 8, which reads:
Article 8 – Right to respect for private and family life
- Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home, and his correspondence.
- There shall be no interference by a public authority with the exercise of this right except such as is in accordance with the law and is necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public safety or the economic well-being of the country, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others.
Unlike other Articles, such as Article 3 which prohibits torture, and “inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment”, Article 8 is not an absolute right. This means the government has the right to balance its need to control immigration with the right of an individual to enjoy their private and family life without interference.
What is the Procedure for Appealing an Immigration Decision?
Your immigration lawyer will work with you to lodge an appeal with the First-Tier Tribunal. They will carefully listen to the facts of your case and fill out the required form to lodge the appeal.
The appeal form will:
- state the reasons for the appeal
- be signed and dated by you (the appellant) or your lawyer
- state whether the appellant requires an interpreter, and if so, for which language and dialect
- state whether the appellant intends to attend the hearing, and
- state whether the appellant will be represented at any hearing
The notice of appeal must also be accompanied by:
- the notice of decision against which the appeal is brought or an explanation as to why this cannot be included
- any statement of reasons for the decision
- any documents in support of your case which have not been supplied to the respondent
- an application for the Lord Chancellor to issue a certificate of fee satisfaction, and
- any further documents required by an applicable practice direction
In most cases, a fee must be paid to lodge an appeal. The fee will not be refunded where the Home Office withdraws its original negative decision after the appeal has been submitted; however, a claim for compensation from the Home Office can be made.
An appeal must be lodged with the tribunal within 14 calendar days of the date that the appellant was sent the notice of the decision if they are in the UK, or within 28 calendar days from the date that they receive an entry clearance decision.
Appeals can be decided either orally or on the papers. In most cases, an oral hearing is preferable as it allows the appellant (or, in the case of entry clearance appeals, their representative or UK sponsor) to respond to submissions made by the Home Office and questions raised by the latter or the immigration judge.
Final Words Regarding Immigration Appeals
Staff at the UKVI have often rejected visa applications. In many cases, refusal decisions are reversed after an appeal has been lodged. Our experienced team can guide and assist you with the process of appealing an immigration decision. This is why it is crucial to seek the advice of an experienced immigration lawyer should your visa or leave to remain application be rejected. Often the mere threat of a challenge is enough to make UKVI re-evaluate their refusal.
Disclaimer: No material/information provided on this website should be construed as legal advice. Readers should seek an appropriate professional advice for their immigration matters.