20 year long residence – period of imprisonment
The client instructed us to prepare his 20 year route long residence application. We advised that normally this 20 year period would consist of a length of time spent outside of prison. Despite this individual having a one year prison sentence in his 20 year history, we were able to successfully argue that he should be granted Indefinite Leave regardless.
10 year long residence – medical issues
The client instructed us to prepare his 10 year long residence application. The normal appointment for this requires the applicant to have spent no more than 540 days outside of the country in total across the years. This individual had spent 690 days out of the country. There were mitigating circumstances, however, as the individual had medical issues and suffered from depression. They were able to re-enter into the UK on a visit Visa and complete the 10 year application successfully. (KR).
10 year long residence – tax affairs refusal
We applied for a client to obtain “Indefinite Leave to Remain” as a result of remaining in the country for 10 years lawfully. The Home Office refused on grounds relating to his tax affairs whilst he was at T1 general migrant, this was expected. We prepared him thoroughly for the process and successfully challenged the Home Office’s decision. He was granted “Indefinite Leave to Remain” and was overjoyed that he continue his life in the UK.
10 year application – 700 days out of the country
The client instructed us to apply for “Indefinite Leave to Remain” after he was refused a 10 year long residence claim due to being outside of the country for too long. Under the 10 year rule, you would normally need to have spent no more than 540 days outside of the country in the 10 year period, this client had spent over 700 days outside of the country. Although this was his second application we felt confident that we could persuade the Home Office to grant him “Indefinite Leave to Remain”. This was despite the fact that he had spent 700 days outside the country, including a single period spanning over a year outside of the nation. He had a significant medical history which we relied upon to successfully argue for his “Indefinite Leave to Remain”. This required a great deal of hard work and he was incredibly grateful to be able to remain in the UK. (MM)
10 year long residence – diplomatic case
We were instructed by a Kuwaiti national seeking “Indefinite Leave to Remain”. He had remained in the United Kingdom for 10 years on a diplomatic passport as he was working for the local London Embassy. He was well over the 504 day permitted leave, but we were able to argue that his sterling work for the embassy and his promotion of British/Kuwaiti relations showed he was a deserving candidate for “Indefinite Leave to Remain”. The Home Office agreed with our decision and our client was so thankful for the hard work we put in and the fact that he could continue to remain in the UK. (AZ)
10 years long residence – residing as EEA family member for 4 years
A client came to us requesting an application for settlement based on 10-years long residency in the UK. He notified us that for the last 4 years of this 10 year period, he resided in the UK as a family member of an EEA national. We requested that the Home Office apply discretion in this case, and we were able to have this application approved. Our client was overjoyed that he could continue to live in the UK. (AS)
10 years long residence – Limited records
A Canadian national who had been in the UK on a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa. He came in for an advice only session to discuss his entrepreneur extension. After going through his immigration history, we determined that he likely qualified for ILR based on 10 years long residence. As he had limited records of his travels, owing to being a registered traveller in the UK and Canada and frequently not stamping, we did a SAR to obtain Home Office passenger history to supplement his own travel records.
After checking his full immigration history, comprising of a mixture of student visas, time in the UK as a non-visa national visitor, post-study work and Tier 1 Entrepreneur, we were able to confirm that he fully met the requirements for ILR. So instead of preparing him an entrepreneur application, we were able to advise and prepare a long residence application. Using super priority, he had a decision the next working day that he was granted ILR. This meant instead of continuing on a visa for another 2 years, he is now considered a settled resident and in one year will be able to apply to naturalise as a British citizen.
Naturalisation – Overstay
We were instructed to pursue a naturalisation application for a client who had recently overstayed his permitted leave by 28 days in the last five years. Whilst this normally would have led to a refusal, we were able to successfully argue that naturalisation was deserved in this case. (RR)
Entrepreneur Visas – Previous Refusals
We represented a client who had been refused an extension of her tier 1 Entrepreneur Visa. She came to us after her second refusal and whilst she was waiting for a third application for an extension to be refused. We noted that the client had a decision which seemed to show confused Home Office thinking but also perhaps some errors on the part of the previous immigration solicitor. We brought in counsel and, after some advice, submitted a pre-action judicial review. The Home Office lawyers at the Government Legal Service, agreed to reconsider the decision, and would not charge a fee to do so. They then granted the application leaving our client and her family overjoyed as they continue their residence in the UK.
Late registration as a director
We represent a client who had been shopping around for a lawyer but was told by other firms that she did not qualify for an extension of her entrepreneur Visa. This was because she had broken the strict rule that required her to have registered as a director of a company within six months of arrival in the UK.
Although this was her accountant’s fault, she was still at risk of losing her extension. We advised her of the risks, but also advised her that she had no other option apart from applying for the extension rather than going home, which she did not wish to do. We made the application with detailed representations and explained what happened with supporting evidence from her accountant. The extension was granted, and the client and her business remain in the UK. They continue to work happily in the UK.
Innovator Visa – Technology Business
A client from the US had an idea of an innovative, scalable and viable business; a Bluetooth chip designed to be embedded into different company assets, like trackers when hired by customers. This will allow the company to track down where their assets are, giving them reassurance. This idea would bridge the gap in different markets especially ones who allow customers and clients to hire and lease their products. The client had already begun informally talking to the endorsers when instructing Westkin. We evaluated the business idea and contacted the appropriate endorsement body. We also provided the client and the endorser guidance on the endorsement process and how to provide the letter. We then gave the endorser advice on how to certify the £50,000 investment. When preparing the client through the process, we went step by step, explaining each stage of the application. This resulted in a successful visa granted by the Home Office.
Innovator Visa – Non Technology Business
We were put into contact with two clients applying for a start-up visa, however, these clients had already secured the endorsement status from their respective endorsement body. The clients were from Argentina & India and had a business idea that would revolutionise how commercial kitchens are used. The idea would provide huge changes to the culinary industry and had a huge untapped market. We were appointed to the case to help these two entrepreneurs secure their visa. We also assisted the clients through every step of the application process, obtaining all the necessary documents and evidence needed. In the end, the visa application was successful, combined with their endorsement, this meant that these two entrepreneurs were ready for business within the UK. They were excited to be able to start their new business in the UK.
Overturning a refusal
An individual approached us as he had been refused a family visit visa previously. As he was from Iran, deemed to be a country of relatively high risk, he wanted to instruct us to get the decision overturned. As with most visit visa refusal letters, the reasoning was weak and very limited. Although it might seem like overkill, we highlighted the deficiencies in a pre-action protocol letter and the decision was reversed within the month. The clients were so happy that they could spend time in the UK with family.
Multiple visit Visa refusals
We represented a Bangladeshi man who had been refused UK visit visas on three separate occasions. He approached us to try one last time to obtain a UK visit visa so that he could visit his sister in the UK as well as spending time with friends who are now based here.
We requested his files from the Home Office which revealed glaring mistakes from the Home Office. They were clearly wrong when they said he had no genuine reason to return; he was involved in the family business and had a wide range of responsibilities. His visa was granted, and he was pleased that he was finally able to spend time with his sister and friends.
We represented a Chinese national who had been refused his visit visa before he came to see us. The reason for the refusal was that he had included in his application false documents under the direction of his travel agent. Once we investigated the matter, we noticed that documents were included by the travel agent the client had used in China to attain the visa. We prepared detailed statements from the travel agent; provided a detailed representation about what the previous case precedent had set about dishonesty; and, provided a detailed statement from the client himself. The application was granted. And the Chinese national was then able to visit the UK, allowing him to review schools in the UK for his children. The client was deeply grateful for the work we put in.
TIER 2 SPONSORSHIP LICENCE
We represented a business who wanted to employ a Tier 2 migrant worker. He had been told by other firms that his company has too small to acquire a sponsorship license. This was because currently he was the only director of the company and it was only him and a part-time secretary, who working out of her garage. We knew that the Home Office would take into account the size of the business, because of our decades of experience, so long as we proved the business was seen as genuine. We were able to do so and gained a license to sponsor the migrant worker. The business owner is still operating and expanding his business. He was thrilled to have this successfully completed.
Hiring migrant workers
We represented a gym in London which sought to hire a business development manager to help grow the membership of the business. Other firms had stated that the case was weak because the individual did not have a specific marketing background, instead he was an influencer on Instagram. We noted the utility of this position as it could gain both increased and revenue for the company.
We showed the Home Office other examples of where lifestyle businesses had used influencers to great success and they were convinced that the vacancy was a genuine one which could only be filled by this individual, the visa was granted and the business continued to grow further.
Reinstatement of Sponsor Licence
A company based in the UK approached us as their licence had been suspended. They had 21 days to provide further information otherwise their licence would be revoked. We noted that the company had unfortunately not been paying the correct rates and hadn’t completed the RLMT properly. After providing a detailed explanation of some of the lapses and putting in place specific assurances and measures to ensure that the same error did not occur. We provided a very detailed bundle of documents to the relevant Home Office team. This led to the sponsor licence being reinstated, to the relief of a very grateful company as well as its migrant staff.
Reinstatement of Sponsor Licence
A client came to us after he had his Tier 2 License suspended because a compliance officer did not believe his role fulfilled one on the shortage occupation list. This was despite the fact that he had submitted the required documents. These documents were not reviewed during the compliance officer’s visit. We supported our client and wrote a detailed response which led to the decision being overturned. Our client’s licence was reinstated at a Level A rating.
Failure to meet requirements
We represented an Iranian national who wanted to apply for ILR as a Sole Representative. He had remained in the United Kingdom for 5 years, although he hadn’t completed the appropriate requirements. We were able to successfully prove that the reason for this was for a previous curtailment upon entry by the Home Office was unfair. He was grateful when the decision was overturned, and he was granted ILR.
An Iranian family-run tech company wanted to start a branch of their business in the UK. They came to us requesting a Sole Representative visa. The client informed us that his funds were kept in Iran and that whilst he was a minority shareholder in the company, he held the same number of shares as two other senior representatives, 20%, with the rest of the shares being distributed among lower officials in the business. This meant that there was no majority shareholder which would alarm the Home Office. We were able to get the right documents from his company in Iran and was able to secure his visa within 3 weeks. He was not required to sit an interview.
DOMESTIC VIOLENCE STATUS
Abusive control but not violence
We represented a lady from Pakistan who had been treated badly by her British husband. Although there was no violence there was a pattern of coercive and controlling behaviour including not allowing the client to leave the house, controlling her money and treating her in a demeaning manner. This case was a challenge as there was no conclusive evidence such as evidence from the police or other authority figures. We took on the case, even though the client had been advised by the lawyers that she didn’t have a good case, and we advised her to obtain statements from people who had seen this behaviour in public places. We also included a note from her GP, which although not including details of any violence, did confirm that she was feeling depressed and unhappy. Not only was her application granted and she felt very relieved to put this very difficult situation behind her, but later on she naturalised as a British national.
Right to Family
We represented a migrant who had obtained a spouse visa based on their marriage to a British national. As the visa was described as a settlement visa, they believed that they did not need to apply for any further extension. Their previous lawyers did not advise them otherwise. When they contacted the Home Office to request a passport, they were told that not only had his visa expired but he had to leave the country. They approached us and we took a sympathetic view and decided to take on the case. We applied and flagged up the inadvertent nature of the mistake and the fact that they had British child. The application was granted, and the clients were so happy they bought us chocolates.
Children – Not biological family
An applicant came to us requesting entry to the UK as a British citizen as she was the daughter of the British citizen. It was revealed that she was not the biological daughter of a British citizen but played a vital role in looking after her younger siblings. We made an application outside of the rules and was able to convince the judges to appeal the Home Office’s decision.
Children – Lifting no recourse to public funds
The Home Office withdrew the prohibition of one of our client’s leave as well as his dependents (his wife and two children who are under the age of 18). Our client was from a very low-income household, where both himself and his wife worked part-time jobs and couldn’t afford to pay for childcare. We calculated that whilst on public funds before, their average cost per meal was £1.55 for 3 meals a day per person for the entire family.
The family were in receipt of universal credit before the NRPF (no recourse to public funds) order. After the imposition of NRPF they were required to stop claiming benefits and were liable to pay the government hundreds of pounds in benefits, so that their leave was not at risk of being revoked and criminal proceedings were not taken against them for benefit fraud. If the NRPF was not lifted, they would eventually have become homeless. The family were extremely grateful for our service and that they could continue to receive the support they needed.
Deportation – Appeal on family life
A Nigerian national who had never held leave to remain was set to be deported by the Home Office. He had come to the UK as a child and whilst his family was granted indefinite leave to remain (ILR), in 2010 he was convicted of drug offences and was subsequently not grated ILR when the rest of his family were. Our client had a child with a partner who suffered from autism and took on a parental role for his partner’s other child. By highlighting the exceptional circumstances of his case and the detrimental impact his removal would have on his family, we successfully appealed the Home Office’s decision.
Investor visa extension
We represented an investor visa holder who was seeking an extension. He approached us after having the visa for a number of years. His investments were not readily identifiable ones, so he did not qualify under the rules. Other firms were not taking his case, but we advised him that he had a strong hand so long as he could identify the nature of his investment. We were able to do so, and his extension was granted. He was ecstatic that we were able to provide this extension for him.
Failure to keep cash balance
We represented an Investor Visa client who came up for Indefinite Leave, under the old 1 million system. He was required to show that. aside from the £750,000 invested, he maintained a balance of £250,000 cash in the United Kingdom. He had not done so, but we were able to argue that this was inadvertent and the extension was granted. The client was happy and kept his investments in the UK.
SPOUSE AND RELATIONSHIP VISAS
Previous Poor Immigration History
We represented a couple who were same sex, where the migrant, a Bolivian national, had a poor immigration history including Clandestine Entry. Although this could have led to a refusal, we were able to argue the reasons and explain the circumstances of the entire case. This was accepted by the Home Office, who approved their proposed civil partner case, and their subsequent case for civil partnership visa status. They remain in the UK, happy ever since.
Failure to Meet Financial Requirements
We were instructed to help a couple who were seeking a spouse visa for an Indian national, where the British national earned £12,000 per annum, significantly lower than the £18,600 required. As the British National was pregnant, we took on the matter and put forwards the significance of their family on their case. The Home Office accepted our argument. The visa was granted, and the couple were reunited in the UK for the birth of the child.
A client came to us after 6 months of being misadvised by his former representative. He requested a spousal visa to extend his leave to remain and was on a student visa that would expire soon. His former representative did not inform him that there was a financial requirement and was referred to us by a friend of his. We informed him of this requirement, and he told us that he would only be able to meet the requirement a week after the expiry date of his visa. This was further complicated by the fact that he was not on a salaried income. We sent off an initial application with a request that discretion be applied before the expiry of his visa as well as a separate application to vary. Using the super priority service, we were able to get his leave approved within two hours.