EEA Family Permit / Residence Card Refused : How to Appeal the Decision?
EEA Family Permit / Residence Card refusals are occurring in large numbers and many families have been left devastated by UKVI immigration decisions.
An example was reported in late May 2018. The Home Office wants to remove a 23-year-old Ghanaian man, whose father is an EEA national, as immigration officials state the man is no longer dependent on his father. Despite being a Commonwealth Games baton bearer and being elected to the Scottish Youth Parliament (SYP) in 2013 while at Paisley Grammar School, he has been denied a Residence Card.
If you have left or wish to leave your home country to move to the UK with an EEA national, being denied an EEA Family Permit or Residence Card is stressful. However, by instructing an immigration lawyer in London, you can be assured of receiving the best advice, representation and a strong chance of having the refusal decision overturned.
Given the current political climate and the state of flux over the future of EEA nationals in the UK, if you have had a negative decision regarding your EEA Family Permit or EEA Residence Card, it is crucial you take matters into your own hands and seek expert advice.
Client Says, “I know A Y & J Solicitors for many years now and instructed them for various UK immigration matters. But specially I like to talk & thank about my mother’s latest EEA residence permit under ‘Surinder Singh’ route that has been approved in the ‘First instance’.It was a very complex immigration application under EU regulation but with the help of A Y & J Solicitors and team, this became a dream come true.
It was a very complex immigration application under EU regulation but with the help of A Y & J Solicitors and team, this became a dream come true.
I always received a full assurance and a complete hand holding support throughout the application process. I am united with my mother in the UK with the top technical knowledge of EU regulation, relentless efforts and honest – humble approach of A Y & J Solicitors. Saying ‘Thank you’ won’t be enough here, having my mother with me in the UK is a lot more than any words I describe my appreciation with. I highly recommend A Y & J Solicitors to anyone who is looking for professional support in relation to UK immigration including EU regulation / Surinder Singh route.”
What Decisions can Give Rise to an EEA Appeal?
There are several reasons why you may wish to appeal a UKVI decision if you are a Direct Family Member of an EEA national. These include:
- Your EEA Family Permit, EEA Residence Card, or EEA Permanent Residence Card has been refused
- You are an EEA family member who is being threatened with removal even though you have retained the right of residence
- You have the right to be in the UK under the ‘Zambrano’ principle or have entered the UK under the Surinder Singh route and are being threatened with removal
Some facts on EEA appeals under the Immigration Rules. These include:
- EEA appeals do not restrict the evidence to be adduced on appeal. In Boodhoo (EEA Regs: relevant evidence)  UKUT 00346 (IAC), the Upper Tribunal held that it can consider any evidence which it thinks relevant to the substance of an EEA Appeal, including evidence which may affect the appeal decision which comes to light on the date of decision. For example, the Tribunal has admitted late evidence of comprehensive sickness cover, as it was plainly relevant to the substance of the decision, despite it having arisen after the date of that decision.
- The EEA Regulations 2016 require the Home Office to decide EEA applications (other than derivative residence cards applications) within six months from the date on which the documents are received.
- The EU Charter of Fundamental Rights also applies to EEA appeals.
In addition, there is a Home Office policy for reconsideration of EEA decisions, which is more generous than the policy relevant to applications made under the Immigration Rules. This states reconsideration would be appropriate when:
- The applicant raises a point of law (including claims that the wrong regulation has been applied)
- The applicant challenges the Home Office policy applied
- The applicant has rightly drawn attention to the fact that evidence alleged not to have been provided in support of the application was provided, or
- New and compelling evidence was submitted before the refusal decision was dispatched that would, if it had been considered at the time, have led to documentation being issued
Can Extended Family Appeal an EEA Decision?
In late 2017, the decision in Khan v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 1755,  All ER (D) 67 (Nov) overturned one of the most controversial immigration law cases in recent years, namely, Sala (Albania) v Secretary of State for Home Department  UKUT 411 (IAC).
Prior to the decision in Sala, EEA extended family members enjoyed a right of appeal on refusal decisions.
In Sala, the Upper Tribunal held that under the EEA Regulations 2006, a right of appeal only existed in matters where there was an entitlement to a residence card. The EEA Regulations 2006, reg 17(4)(b) stated the issuing of a residence card to an extended family member was at the discretion of the Home Office, and that meeting the requirements alone was not sufficient. The tribunal concluded this discretion meant that extended family members were not in the same position as family members of EEA nationals who automatically enjoyed a right to a residence card once they met specified requirements. Therefore, they did not have a right of appeal. This decision meant extended family members could only seek to remedy a refusal of a Residence Card or Permanent Residence Card by way of Judicial Review.
In Khan, the Court of Appeal stated the EEA regulations were “formidably obscure and badly drafted”. Sala was overturned and anyone who lodged an appeal with the First Tier Tribunal for decisions made on or before 31 January 2017 on the basis that Sala was wrongly decided will have a right of appeal as, thanks to the decision in Khan, the appeal was lawfully filed under the EEA Regulations 2006.
How do I Make an EEA Appeal?
If you wish to make an EEA appeal, you should consult an experienced immigration lawyer. There is a specific Home Office policy relating to the reconsideration of EEA Family Permit/Residence Card refusals which is more generous than what is provided through the Immigration Rules. Your lawyer will be able to investigate whether this policy applies to your refusal. In addition, your lawyer can advise you whether, in your case, it is better to appeal or resubmit a fresh application. We have brought many successful results for our clients.
If you are to be removed from the country, your removal notice will contain all the information about the time limit for making an appeal and the address to which the appeal needs to be sent. We can help you work through these instructions to ensure your appeal is submitted correctly.
Staff at the UKVI are authorised to reject visa applications. In many cases, refusal decisions are speedily reversed after an appeal has been lodged. Therefore, it is good to seek the advice of an experienced immigration lawyer should your EEA Family Permit/ Residence Card be rejected.
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.