Tag: Tier 1

Domestic violence – Indefinite Leave to Remain

A VICTORY FOR OUR CLIENT IN THE FIRST-TIER TRIBUNAL

Our lawyers won the appeal regarding indefinite leave to remain in the UK on the human right grounds.
Our client, a national of the Russian Federation, has lived and worked in the UK as a consultant for more than 3 years. Throughout her leave she held a spouse visa under the Immigration Rules (part 8, Appendix FM) as she was married to a British Citizen who is settled and present in the UK. The client had a complicated relationship with her British spouse (former), she was persuaded by former husband to apply for the spouse visa rather than a working visa that was also an option at that time. Our client’s spouse had regular mood swings, behaved with the client aggressively from time to time, forced her to leave the matrimonial house against her will and even forced her to make an act that was against her religion. Also, the client’s husband threatened to inform the Home Office that their marriage is over if she did not follow his instructions. After these events, our client had mental problems, was in continuous grief, sadness, stress, and regret; could not work properly. In addition, she suffered financial abuse since she was forced to transfer money into the spouse’s account, most notoriously, former husband did not give access to that funds.
Our client made an application for indefinite leave to remain in the UK as a victim of domestic violence that was initially refused by the Home Office, and she had been divorced 5 months before the final hearing.
In the Appeal case, our team provided the successful representation of domestic violence. The appeal was allowed and the right for indefinite leave to remain as a victim of domestic violence was granted.

Domestic Violence Retained Rights Appeal Allowed!

Another fantastic result from Oksana Demyanchuk and her client after another successful appeal to the First-tier Tribunal.

The client, in this case, came to Sterling & Law Associates LLP after her marriage to an EEA national had broken down on grounds of domestic violence. Accordingly, an application for a residence card on the basis of the retained right of residence was made to the Home Office.

However, this application was refused as the marriage between our client and her EEA national Sponsor has not lasted for at least 3 years and the Home Office was not satisfied that our client had been a victim of domestic violence as there was little documentary or no independent evidence to corroborate our client’s claim to have been the victim of domestic violence.

Accordingly, Oksana lodged an appeal to the First-tier Tribunal against the decision of the Home Office, asserting that the client’s claim to be the victim of domestic violence was credible and therefore the Home Office decision was unlawful.

As is often the case in matters involving domestic violence, our client had little tangible evidence to demonstrate that they were a victim of such violence. Therefore, Oksana has placed particular attention and emphasis on the witness statements in the appeal.

The Judge, accepting that evidence in cases of domestic violence is not always available, found that the evidence of our client and witnesses was credible and gave a detailed picture that our client was, in fact, a victim of domestic violence. In doing so the Judge noted the following:

“I am not confined or restricted to independent documentary evidence such as that which the respondent may usually seek in cases involving or alleging domestic violence. The absence of police and medical reports are not necessarily indicators that the appellant did not suffer or was not the victim of domestic violence.

There are a whole host of reasons why those who suffer domestic violence, and especially women victims of male perpetrators, are reluctant to report to the police and the authorities that they are such victims. The reasons can be multifarious and complex and this is well documented in much research and studies in the area of domestic violence.

Entrepreneur visa will no longer exist & changes to the investor route

Significant changes are happening to the Entrepreneur and Investor visa. Tier 1 Entrepreneur category will no longer exist from 29 March 2019, while Tier 1 will undergo significant changes.
 
The immigration minister says that the Entrepreneur route “has a long tail of low-quality projects which contribute little or nothing to the wider UK economy”.
 
In place of the entrepreneur comes the innovator:
 
The Innovator category is intended for more experienced business people. As well as an endorsement, applicants will need £50,000 to invest in their business from any legitimate source (reduced from £200,000 for most applicants in the current Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) category). The funding requirement will be waived for those switching from the Start-up category who have made significant achievements against their business plans. The category may lead to a settlement in the UK.
 
Again, the new Appendix W gives the details. The three main endorsement criteria are defined as follows:
 
Innovation: the applicant has a genuine, original business plan that meets new or existing market needs and/or creates a competitive advantage.
Viability: The applicant has the necessary skills, knowledge, experience and market awareness to successfully run the business.
 
Scalability: There is evidence of structured planning and of potential for job creation and growth into national and international markets.
 
Note that these are slightly different from the requirements for start-up visas, although the three headings are the same. The endorser must also be “reasonably satisfied that the applicant will spend the majority of their working time in the UK on developing business ventures”.
 
Unlike with the exceptional talent visa route, there is no set list of organisations that can endorse someone for an innovator visa. Endorsing bodies must be able to satisfy the criteria in Part W6.8, though.
 
Extension applications for Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) migrants will remain open until 5 April 2023, and settlement applications until 5 April 2025.
Contact us should you have any questions.
Ruslan Kosarenko
Senior Partner
info@sterling-law.co.uk

New changes in the Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) Visa Category

New changes to the Immigration Rules were prepared and laid by the Home Office before Parliament on 15 June 2018. These changes will come into effect on 6 July 2018.

In addition to the removal of doctors and nurses from the Tier 2 visa cap there are a number of changes to other UK’s visa routes, including Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent), Tier 1 (Investor) and Tier 1 (Entrepreneur).

Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) Visa Changes

The Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) category is for talented individuals in the fields of science, humanities, engineering, the arts and digital technology to work in the UK without the need to be sponsored for employment in a specific post. The applicants must be endorsed by a Designated Competent Body.

The following changes are being made to this category:

  • Opening up the exceptional talent visa to include leading fashion designers. The endorsement of arts applicants is being widened to include those in the fashion industry who are operating leading designer fashion businesses. These applicants will be assessed by the British Fashion Council operating within the endorsement remit of Arts Council England.
  • Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) route has also been opened up to a wider pool of TV and film applicants, under the remit of ACE. This is due to the changes to the criteria and list of eligible awards for applicants in film and television.
  • Other changes are being made to the criteria for endorsement by each Designated Competent Body, at those bodies’ requests. These include changes to the evidential requirements for applicants holding a peer-reviewed research fellowship; and changes for digital technology applicants to reflect the rebranding of “Tech City UK” as “Tech Nation”.
  • Amendments are being made so that endorsements for Croatian nationals no longer count against the number of allocated endorsements available to each Designated Competent Body. This is because Croatian nationals will no longer need to apply for work authorisation in this category, owing to the lifting of transitional controls on the work rights of Croatian nationals on the occasion, this July, of the fifth anniversary of Croatia’s accession to the EU in July 2013.

More information is available in the statement of changes.

For more details, please feel free contact our please contact our immigration lawyers on Tel. +44(0)20 7822 8535, Mobile / Viber: +447463382838, by e-mail: contact@sterling-law.co.uk or via our online appointment booking form.

Successful Application for Administrative Review of Refusal in Tier 1 Investor Visa Extension

Our team is delighted to share the latest news that our client’s application for administrative review of the refusal of  leave to remain a s a Tier 1 Investor has been successful.

Administrative review is a procedure that allows your visa application to be reviewed if it has been refused.

The administrative review is carried out by a different department of the Home Office. It should be successful if any procedural errors made by an original decision maker will be identified. If that is the case, the original decision will be withdrawn and your visa application reconsidered.

Tier 1 Investor Visa Extension

The Applicant is a Kazakh national, who has been issued with entry clearance as a Tier 1 Investor, entered the UK with her dependants. On the expiration of her visa, she applied for further leave to remain as a Tier 1 Investor, with her dependants applying for an extension of their leave. This application was refused on several grounds.

  1. Firstly, the Respondent was not satisfied that the funds loaned to the Applicant were under her control in the UK, which was against the provisions of paragraphs 2, 6 and 11 of the loan agreement. This allegation was founded upon the basis that the requirement of the Applicant to invest the loan in an Authorised Investment Destination (AID) Company was not satisfied, thus resulting an agreement to ‘lose its force’. The Respondent assumed that the reference to an ‘AID Company’ must refer to a specific company. However, this was not specified in the loan agreement and the Respondent’s claim was argued to be unreasonable, whist lacking any objective evidence.
  2. Secondly, the Respondent was not convinced that the Applicant’s investment was This was argued to be outside of the Respondent’s concern with the regards to the merits of the investment. The investment of 1 million pounds in the company is one of the main requirements to obtain a Tier 1 Investor Visa, which was done in accordance with the rules and regulations according to the facts.
  3. Thirdly, the Respondent referred to the Articles of Association of the company, alleging that its provisions prevented the funds from being under the Applicant’s control and disposable in the UK. However, the Articles of Association guaranteed that the funds would be redeemed to the Applicant, making them consistent with the fact that the Applicant had a sufficient control over them.
  4. Finally, the Respondent alleged that the Applicant’s investment was not within the category of paragraph 65(b) of Appendix A, namely ‘open-ended investment companies, investment trust companies, investment syndicate companies, or pooled investment vehicles’. However, no clear evidence was provided regarding this matter. The Respondent was concerned about a disclosure of the company’s principle business by its Accountants. This evidence was argued to be insufficient to assert the company’s activities at the time of the investment. Additionally, the Respondent referred to the information given by the Applicant during her interview, particularly that the Applicant exercises powers to control the company’s future investments, which was again argued to be lacking any reasonable basis on which to determine the applicability of paragraph 65(b) of Appendix A.

Success of the Application

Sterling Law, defined against all odds, provided all the necessary arguments in favour of the Applicants. Accordingly, the Administrative Review was successful on the grounds of paragraph AR2.11(d) of the Immigration Rules, particularly that the ‘original decision maker failed to apply the Secretary of State’s relevant published policy and guidance in relation to the application’.

The arguments presented by the Home Office authorities were made on the basis of their subjective and unreasonable assumptions, rather than relying on the objective evidence.

This is but a mere example of how passionate and dedicated Sterling Law is to fight for a just and unbiased bureaucracy.

Immigration Assistance

For expert advice and assistance in relation to your particular immigration case, please contact our immigration lawyers on Tel. +44(0)20 7822 8535, Mobile / Viber: +447463382838, by e-mail: contact@sterling-law.co.uk or via our online appointment booking form.

Immigration Law

UK Government to Review Investor Visas issued to Russian nationals in 2008-2015

On Tuesday, 27 March  2018, the Prime Minister Theresa May confirmed to the members of parliament that the UK government was conducting a review of visas issued to the foreign investors.

According to The Times, Mrs May announced that the investor visa programme under which more than 700 Russian investors came to Britain between 2008 and 2015 is under review. The Prime Minister noted that the Home Office has been examining whether the Tier 1 Investor route was being used properly or whether there were any loopholes.

Until the end of 2014 the applicants for Tier 1 Investor visas had to demonstrate a minimum of £1 million to invest in the UK, then this threshold was increased to £2 million.

The Prime Minister was urged to start a review of 706 Tier 1 Investor visas issued to the Russian citizens  and their respective source of income indicated in the application documents.

Retrospective Investor Visas Review

This unprecedented retrospective review was announced at the liaison committee of the House of Commons and will affect all the investors and will not specifically be focused on the Russian citizens.

It is expected that the applications for the extension of the Tier 1 Investor visas and indefinite leave to remain (settlement) will be scrutinised by the Home Office. The risk of revocation of the current visas also exists, so any inspections and actions from the Home Office will require immediate response from the visa holders to avoid negative consequences for them and their family members.

Legal Assistance

For expert advice and assistance in relation to your particular case and relevant immigration law requirements, please contact our immigration lawyers on +44(0)20 7822 8535, by e-mail: info@sterling-law.co.uk or via our online appointment booking form.

Updated List of Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) Authorised Endorsing Bodies – June 2017

In June 2017, the list of authorised institutions for Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) visa applications was updated by the Home Office.

The Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) route is for graduates who have an outstanding business idea that they wish to put into practice in the UK. Higher Education Institutions (HEIs) will have a central role in identifying graduates who have developed genuine and credible business ideas or entrepreneurial skills, and in endorsing and supporting them.

Only those institutions listed below are able to endorse graduates wishing to apply under this route:

  • Anglia Ruskin University
  • Arts University Bournemouth
  • Ashridge (Bonar Law Memorial) Trust
  • Aston University
  • Bangor University
  • Birmingham City University
  • Bishop Grosseteste University
  • Bournemouth University
  • BPP University Limited
  • Brunel University
  • Cardiff University
  • City University London
  • Coventry University
  • Cranfield University
  • De Montfort University
  • Edinburgh Napier University
  • Glasgow Caledonian University
  • Goldsmiths University of London
  • Heriot-Watt University
  • Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine
  • King’s College London
  • Kingston University
  • Lancaster University
  • Leeds Beckett University
  • Liverpool Hope University
  • Liverpool John Moores University
  • London Business School
  • London Metropolitan University
  • London School of Economics and Political Science London
  • South Bank University Loughborough University
  • Middlesex University
  • Newcastle University
  • Northumbria University
  • Newcastle Norwich University of the Arts Nottingham
  • Trent University
  • Oxford Brookes University
  • Plymouth University
  • Queen Mary University of London
  • Queen’s University of Belfast
  • Regent’s University
  • London Royal Academy of Music
  • Royal Agricultural University Royal Central School of Speech and Drama
  • Royal College of Art
  • Sheffield Hallam University
  • SOAS, University of London
  • Southampton Solent University
  • Swansea University
  • Teesside University
  • University College London
  • University for the Creative Arts
  • University of Aberdeen
  • University of Bath
  • University of Birmingham
  • University of Brighton
  • University of Bristol
  • University of Buckingham
  • University of Cambridge
  • University of Derby
  • University of Dundee
  • University of East Anglia
  • University of East London
  • University of Edinburgh
  • University of Essex
  • University of Exeter U
  • niversity of Glasgow
  • University of Greenwich
  • University of Hertfordshire
  • University of Huddersfield
  • University of Hull
  • University of Kent
  • University of Leeds
  • University of Leicester
  • University of Lincoln
  • University of Liverpool
  • University of Manchester
  • University of Northampton
  • University of Nottingham
  • University of Oxford
  • University of Portsmouth
  • University of Reading
  • University of Roehampton
  • University of Salford
  • University Of Sheffield
  • University of South Wales
  • University of Southampton
  • University of St Andrews
  • University of Stirling
  • University of Strathclyde
  • University of Sunderland
  • University of Surrey
  • University of Sussex
  • University of the Arts London
  • University of the West of England
  • University of the West of Scotland
  • University of Warwick
  • University of Westminster
  • University of Worcester
  • Guildhall School of Music & Drama

Full information is available on the UKVI web-site.