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Making a successful application for a visa – why good legal advice is so important

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We’ve just been involved in a case that really highlights the importance of good legal advice at the right stage of a visa application. The consequences of not getting it right could be serious and make it very difficult to overturn a negative decision. 

Sanjeev Sharma recently acted for an elderly Indian lady who wished to visit her son, his wife and her grandchildren in the UK. She had previously applied for a visit visa on a number of occasions and was refused. She had used legal representatives for some of the previous applications and submitted some applications on her own.

He explains:

“Being a widow and living on her own it is always difficult to convince an entry clearance officer that she has the required intention to return, as she has nothing that ties her to India, her only son is in the UK and he provides her with financial support also.

“After careful consideration of the evidence and preparation of the application the application was submitted with a strong covering letter setting out how our client met each aspect of the immigration rule.

“The importance of front loading such applications can not be overstated, as there is no right of appeal except on the grounds of family life. The only other option if refused is a judicial review. Therefore you need to ensure that everything you want to say and rely on is stated from the outset and reference to the evidence is made. If a judicial review is then pursued it is easier to argue that the entry clearance officer’s decision was unreasonable.”

In this case, despite its history of refusals our client was granted a five year multiple visit visa.  Both client and son were over the moon.

We can’t stress enough the importance of getting good quality legal advice before any application is made. The immigration rules are extremely complex and always changing.  We work hard to make sure we are completely up to date with all of the latest rules and regulations, and we have also been involved in several high profile cases challenging the way the rules are designed and implemented. 

For advice on any immigration issue please come to one of our free advice sessions, we hold at least two a week. They take place on Thursdays and Saturdays at our Birmingham offices, as well as two sessions a month in Telford and one in Leicester on the first Saturday of each month. You don’t need to have an appointment, simply drop-in while the sessions are running. 

If you can’t make one of the drop-in sessions you can get in touch with our specialist immigration team

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