How to Win an Immigration Appeal – Top Tips From Gulbenkian Andonian Solicitors
When you submit a UK immigration application, there are two possible outcomes; your request will be approved, or it will be rejected. Every applicant is normally hopeful of getting a positive response. However, considering the highly complex immigration rules surrounding the application process, getting a ‘no’ might not be the end of the road. You can opt to make a fresh application, apply for an administrative review or judicial review or submit an appeal to overturn the Home Office decision if you have the legal right to appeal.
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The UK’S First Tier Tribunal that deals with immigration and asylum appeals received a whopping 26 211 appeals between April 2020 and March 2021, and about 50% of the cases succeeded. In this article, you’re going to learn why your immigration application might be rejected and how to win an immigration appeal in case of a rejection.
What is an Immigration Appeal?
An immigration appeal in the UK, is the legal process through which a person who has been refused a their immigration application can challenge the decision made by the UK Home Office. An appeal allows the individual to present their case to a higher authority or tribunal, with the aim of overturning the initial decision and obtaining the desired immigration status.
The immigration appeal process varies depending on the country, but generally involves submitting an appeal application within a specific timeframe, providing supporting documentation and attending a hearing to present one’s case. The hearing is typically conducted by an independent immigration judge or panel who will review the case and make a decision.
Immigration appeals can be complex and time-consuming, and it’s essential to seek legal advice from an immigration lawyer or advisor who can guide you through the process and help you prepare a strong case.
Why You May Need An Immigration Appeal
The first step to preparing for a successful immigration appeal, is to understand why the Home Office disapproved of your immigration application. Well, on that note, here are some of the key reasons why immigration requests are declined in the UK:
- Providing wrong information in the immigration application form
- Unintentional mistakes on a UK visa application form
- Applying on the wrong form
- Non- payment of Home office fees or inadequate fees
- Having a criminal history
- Failure to provide adequate eligibility proof
- Failure to give a valid reason for your intention to visit the country
- Deportation order
- Questionable bank account transactions, making the financial capacity of the applicant questionable.
- Failure to choose the right visa category
- Failure to arrange the necessary documents according to the required order.
- Incomplete documentation
- Lack of professional guidance. When you don’t have an immigration expert to hold your hand, you’re highly likely to blunder somewhere along the way in the application process, ultimately contributing to application rejection.
- Failure to disclose the required immigration application history
- Unclear or excessively long itinerary
- Doubtful about the stated monthly income. The Home Office will let you know the exact reason that contributed to the disapproval of your application in the refusal letter. The letter will indicate if you have the legal right to appeal the Home Office decision or not. In this case, to appeal is to initiate a case challenging the verdict given on your immigration application.
If there is a right to appeal, the case will be heard and determined by an immigration judge, who has the capacity to allow or dismiss it. If it is allowed, the Home Office will have to reconsider its decision regarding your application. On the other hand, if the judge dismisses the case, you may be allowed to lodge a fresh appeal.
However, even if you have the right to appeal, you need to weigh if there’s a possibility of having a more favourable decision made after submitting the appeal application. If you believe that there was an error of law and unfairness in the way that the Home Office arrived at the verdict, then seeking a way to have the decision overturned through an appeal will be a worthy cause.
Preferably, involve experienced and reputable UK immigration solicitors to explore your chances of winning the appeal from a highly informed perspective.
How Soon Can You Appeal?
If you’ve confirmed that you have the legal right to appeal the immigration department’s verdict, the next thing to find out is how soon you need to appeal.
Well, you should submit your immigration appeal within 28 days after getting the verdict of your application from the immigration department if you are refunded entry clearance outside the UK. Otherwise, an in-country appeal must be made within 14 days after receipt of the Home office decision. Otherwise, if you are required to leave the UK before you submit the appeal, you should appeal within 28 days after leaving the country.
The Tribunal highly discourages late appeal applications. Your application is likely to be rejected if submitted past the deadline. However, if you have reasonable grounds for missing the deadline, you can still go ahead and submit your appeal application even after the 14 day or 28-day period, but you have to disclose the reason in the application. Upon evaluating the reasonableness of the reason given, the Tribunal will decide on whether to hear your appeal or not.
The UK Immigration Appeal Process: A General Overview
The immigration appeal process entails presenting your reasons against the decision at a hearing at the First-tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber). The person making the appeal is referred to as the appellant and must prove that the Home Office’s decision was incorrect based on the evidence presented. Here is a general overview of the UK immigration appeal process:
Step 1 – Lodging the Appeal
An appeal must be made within 28 days of the date of the decision being challenged.
Step 2 – Preparing Your Case
You, as the appellant, must gather evidence to support your appeal and prepare your case. You can also instruct an immigration solicitor to represent you at the hearing.
Step 3 – Attending the Hearing
A hearing will be scheduled before an immigration judge. The judge will hear evidence from both the appellant and the Home Office and decide based on what evidence is presented.
Step 4 – The Decision
The judge will give a decision in writing within a few weeks of the hearing. If the appeal is successful, the Home Office must reconsider its decision. If the appeal is unsuccessful, it may be possible to appeal the decision further at the Upper Tribunal.
It is important to note that immigration appeals can be complex, and it is recommended that individuals seek legal advice before proceeding with an appeal.
What to do to Win the Appeal?
Involve a highly experienced and trustworthy legal representative
The appeal process is mostly as complex as the initial immigration application. Therefore, you can easily mess up somewhere in the appeal application process, especially if you’re not well conversant with the immigration laws and can’t raise robust and highly convincing legal arguments. This is where the help of a solid legal representative such as our UK immigration solicitors comes in handy.
Our firm is one of the best in the UK for handling UK immigration appeals and have been ranked as Top Tier in the Legal 500 specifically for our work in this area of law.
We will help you do everything right for every step of the process and help you understand the entire process hassle-free. There are the possibility of further appeals along the tribunal route based on errors of law.
Provide solid documentation
Whether you’re using a legal expert or not, providing sufficient and compelling documentation to prove your full eligibility to the immigration request you’re making is pivotal to the success of your appeal. Have all the necessary documents ready and well arranged to the required order.
Be Compliant with the Tribunal Guidelines.
The Tribunal gives a set of guidelines such as deadlines and document orders that should be followed by the applicants of each type of immigration appeals. You need to know the exact guidelines you need to follow for your appeal and ensure that you’re fully compliant when submitting your application to the Tribunal.
How an Immigration Professional can Help You Submit Your Appeal
If you’re making the appeal through a solicitor or an immigration adviser, the process is pretty easy as the professional will do nearly everything for you. The immigration/legal expert will submit the application online through the MyHMCTS service unless you’re in detention. If you are detained, a paper appeal will apply.
If you’re within the UK and would like to submit your application yourself, you can apply online or send the application by post or fax to the immigration tribunal. Otherwise, direct personal applications from outside the UK can use the internal online service.
Hopefully, you are now more knowledgeable on how to win an immigration appeal and the reasons that are likely to contribute to the rejection of your initial immigration application or the appeal. At Gulbenkian Andonian, we have a team of UK immigration solicitors who are ready to help you lodge a successful immigration appeal. Contact us for the best advice on what to do next as far as your immigration appeal is concerned.
FAQs Related to Winning Immigration Appeals
There are several grounds for appealing a UK immigration decision, it really depends on you specific case so do not hesitate to get in contact with us so we can assess it an advise you accordingly.
The chances of winning an immigration appeal in the UK can vary depending on the specific circumstances of your case and the strength of your legal representation. However, by working with experienced immigration solicitors, like Gulbenkian Andonian Solicitors, you can increase your chances of a successful outcome.
Gulbenkian Andonian Solicitors can assist you in every step of the immigration appeal process, including providing legal advice, preparing your case, representing you in court, and negotiating with the Home Office. We have a team of experienced immigration solicitors who specialise in UK immigration law, and can provide you with the best possible representation.
The length of the immigration appeal process can vary depending on the specific circumstances of your case, however, on average, it can take several months to a year to complete.
It is possible to apply for a new visa while your UK visa appeal is pending, however, it is important to seek legal advice before doing so, as it may affect your chances of success in your appeal.
If your immigration appeal is successful, the Home Office will either grant your visa or reconsider their decision. If your visa is granted, you will be able to continue living and working in the UK. If your case is re-assessed, the Home Office will look into your case again, and make a new decision.
If your immigration appeal is unsuccessful, the Home Office’s decision will be upheld, and you will likely have to leave the UK. However, it is important to note that there may be other options available such as administrative review, or applying for a new visa. It’s important to seek legal advice from a specialist immigration solicitor like us at Gulbenkian Andonian Solicitors to understand your options.
Ask our Expert Legal Team
At Gulbenkian Andonian, we pride ourselves on “Excellence, Experience and Efficiency”. With over 35 years of experience on your side, our team of London based lawyers and solicitors have a wealth of experience advising individuals, families and businesses of all sizes to find clarity on UK law.
Call us on +44 (0) 207 269 9590 or fill out the form below. We usually reply within a few hours.
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Dr Bernard Andonian – the Co-Founder of Gulbenkian Andonian Solicitors, is an experienced Immigration Solicitor, former Judge, and recipient of a PhD in Law from the University of West London. He has over four decades of experience practising UK Immigration, Human Rights and Civil Litigation Law. He has served on the Law Society Immigration Law Panel, achieved numerous groundbreaking decisions in higher courts and is featured in the Legal 500’s Hall of Fame.