Judicial Review for ILR Refusal or Spouse Visa Refusal Due to TOEIC
Judicial Review can help to those innocent applicants whose Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), Spouse Visa or any other application refused due to TOEIC. This started in year 2014 it was a tragic time, tens of thousands of students deported following the Educational Test Services (ETS) Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC) scandal. Many lost large sums of money in pre-paid course fees after being accused of fraudulently passing an English-language test to obtain a Tier 4 Student Visa. Other were suddenly told to leave the UK and provided no right of appeal.
At A Y & J Solicitors, we believe that these actions of refusing visas without doing proper investigation by the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) were unfair. We have always carried a belief that innocent individuals should not be penalised. Therefore, we have been dedicated to provide support and expert legal advice to those affected genuine applicants.
For students who have received Removal Directions, we have assisted with several appeals following the recent Supreme Court decision in R (on the application of Kiarie) v Secretary of State for the Home Department and R (on the application of Byndloss) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  UKSC 42, which ruled the ‘deport first, appeal later’ policy breaches Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).
We have secured the withdrawal of multiple removal decisions from the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) against students who have been accused in an ETS TOEIC deception case. You can be confident that we will provide them with expert advice on their complex immigration matter and will support them every step of the process.
What is the ETS TOEIC Removal Scandal?
ETS is a long-standing institution that has been involved in the issuance of the TOEIC. This test is one of the accepted standards for immigrants from other countries to show English language proficiency – a requirement to achieving the UK Visa.
In 2014, BBC’s Panorama programme went undercover to show a small number of providers were involved in fraudulent practices concerning the English language test system. Candidates at two test centres were substituted by bogus exam sitters, and prospective student visa applicants had the answers to the test given to them.
Prospective students who used the centres were promised a “guaranteed pass” for £500; about three times the official exam fee. Nine people were convicted of running the fraudulent scheme in December 2016. It is estimated around 1,000 Tier 4 Visa applicants passed the exam using dishonest methods.
Following the Panorama programme, the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI), led at the time by now Prime Minister, Theresa May, stopped accepting TOEIC pass certificates for visa applications, and launched a nationwide crackdown. This resulted in tens of thousands of students being sent “Removal Directions” meaning they had to abandon their course and leave the country.
Around 70% of the students affected were Indian nationals. In addition, 60 Higher Educational Institutes were stripped of their Sponsor Licences.
After allegations of improper testing at the ETS, the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) took the dramatic action of refusing visas under the alleged use of deception and denied tens of thousands of students already legally studying in the UK access to the country. These students were not given warning and were not provided any chance of defence or rebuttal within the country.
Applications were also refused or rejected based on the possession of an ETS certificate for the TOEIC, and these applicants have been issued Removal Directions, without a right of appeal from within the UK.
In the case 2016 of SM and another v Secretary of State for the Home Department, the court held the Secretary of State for the Home Department acted unlawfully when sending Removal Directions out to tens of thousands of students, without having substantive evidence that each individual student had actually committed fraud on their TOEIC test.
Because of the Supreme Court decision, any allegation of deception can now be challenged by an applicant who is either facing removal or being denied ILR, Spouse visa or any other visa (on the grounds of deception) based on circumstances surrounding the ETC-TOEIC scandal.
Why Choose A Y & J Solicitors to Assist You with a Judicial Review in ILR Refusal or Spouse Visa Refusal Due to TOEIC?
A Y & J Solicitors are experienced in Judicial Review cases representing clients who have received visa refusals. Our experienced team have successfully used the process to have decisions based on TOEIC-ETS deception claims overturned.
Judicial Review is a complex legal procedure that can only be conducted by regulated lawyers such as SRA-regulated solicitors. A Y & J Solicitors is well-qualified and experienced in such applications and fully understand the Pre-Action Protocol Procedure which allows many cases to settle well before a Judicial review application is made.
A Y & J Solicitors takes pride in a long-standing reputation for excellent customer service. Through independent reviews and constant client recommendations, we prove to our clients that we work with the highest level of integrity.
Judicial review is a remedy of last resort. This means all other dispute resolution methods available must be examined before considering making a Judicial Review application. Even if an application is made to the court, it is not guaranteed that it will be permitted to proceed. This is why it is essential to instruct an experienced immigration lawyer to advise and represent you through the process.
When deciding on a Judicial Review matter, the courts are concerned with how the decision was made, rather than the rights or wrongs of the decision itself. Therefore, the court is unable to substitute its decision for the decision made by UKVI. The remedies available include:
- a quashing order – renders the original decision made by UKVI ineffective
- a prohibiting order – prevents UKVI from doing something
- a mandatory order – this requires UKVI to do something, i.e. review the original decision
- in specified circumstances, a declaration or an injunction, or an award of damages
Our lawyers will explain how these remedies can assist you and which options will best suit your particular matter.