Phone
+44 (020) 8676 3449

Email
info@rsosolicitors.com

Address
252 Kirkdale Road
London SE26 4NL
United Kingdom

Immigration Law

 

We understand that having immigration issues can be extremely stressful. The UK immigration rules are constantly changing and canimmigration law2
sometimes be complex and confusing. There can also be short time limits which are very strict and we will endeavour to handle with your case as quickly and efficiently as possible.

In all immigration matters, we offer an ‘document check’ service for a fee should you wish for us to only check your already completed documents to ensure that they have been correctly completed before they are submitted

We can help with all forms of immigration, refugee and asylum issues such as:

  • Spouse Visas
  • Fiancé Visas
  • Domestic Workers
  • Discretionary Leave
  • Long Residence Applications
  • Naturalisation
  • Registration
  • EEA Applications
  • Indefinite Leave to Remain/Settlement
  • Human Rights Applications
  • Detention Advice
  • Students
  • UK Ancestry
  • Entry Clearance
  • Unmarried Partners
  • Family and Defendants
  • Visitors
  • Further Leave to Remain
  • Appeals before the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal
  • Worker Registration Scheme
  • Points Based System
  • Sponsorship Licenses
  • Tier 1 (Highly Skilled Workers, Entrepreneurs, Investors, Exceptional Talent and Post Study Workers)
  • Tier 2 (Work Permits/Certificates of Sponsorship, Sponsored Skilled Workers)
  • Tier 4 (Students)
  • Tier 5 (Temporary Workers) The Youth Mobility Scheme replaces the previous Working Holidaymaker Visa

Please note that the list is not exhaustive.

We have provided some information below on some of the most common areas of immigration law however please note that this area of law is always changing.

UK Marriage / Spouse Visa

A UK Marriage Visa or a Spouse visa allows foreign nationals who are married (or in a civil partnership) to a British citizen, or a person who has settlement status in the UK to enter or remain in the UK. If you are based outside of the UK you will need to apply for Entry Clearance in order to join your spouse/civil partner in the UK. The visa will be granted for two years after which time you can apply for further leave to remain, Indefinite Leave to Remain and Naturalisation as a British Citizen.

The Home Office has introduced stringent criteria which you will need to meet for your visa application to be successful. There is a considerable amount of documentary evidence which you will be required to show as evidence of the fact that you are in a genuine relationship and that you meet the financial requirements.

A large proportion of applications are refused due to insufficient evidence being provided by applicants.

We can assist you with all aspects of your application for a Spouse/Marriage visa. We will prepare your application and ensure that you meet with all the requirements of the relevant Immigration Rules. We will ensure that all key points are substantiated with documentary evidence thereby leading to a successful application and avoiding the unnecessary expense of re submitting your application to the Home Office.

What happens once you are in the UK on a UK Marriage or Spouse Visa

UK Marriage Visas are granted for an initial five year period following which you can apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK (ILR) and British nationality. With a UK Marriage Visa you may bring your dependents (for example your children) with you to the UK. You must, however be able to financially support them for their entire stay. You will be able to take up employment in the UK as soon as the document is granted without the need to arrange a UK Work Permit. With a UK Marriage Visa there are no restrictions upon the type of work that can be undertaken.

Naturalisation

Immigration LawOnce you have completed five years of lawful residence in the UK and you have held Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) for at least one year, you can apply for Naturalisation as a British Citizen. If you are married to a British Citizen, you can apply for Naturalisation as soon as you have completed three years residence in the UK and you have ILR. If successful, it will mean you will no longer be subject to immigration control and you would be free to live and work not only in the UK but anywhere in the EEA. We can help with your Naturalisation application and queries.

Applying for Naturalisation

In order to make an application to Naturalise as a British citizen you must have had Indefinite Leave to Remain for at least 12 months. The only exception is EEA citizens and their family members. Upon five years continuous residence in the UK ending on or after 30 April 2006, EEA citizens who have continuously exercised ‘treaty rights’ (as a worker, self-employed person, student, self-sufficient person or a jobseeker) and their family members automatically acquire permanent residence status.

Once EEA citizens and their family members have had permanent residence status for a period of at least 12 months they are then entitled to apply to Naturalise as a British citizen.

Qualifying Criteria for British Citizenship

  • There are a number of requirements that one has to fulfill in order to make a successful application for British citizenship:
  • Minimum age of 18;
  • Sound mind;
  • Intention of having your home in the UK;
  • Sufficient knowledge of English Language;
  • Sufficient knowledge of life in the UK;
  • Good character;
  • Residence requirements; and
  • References.

EEA Family & Residence Permits

An EEA Family permit is for nationals of countries outside the EEA who are family members of EEA nationals who wish to come to the UK.

Although the UK is a member of the EEA, a non-EEA family member of a British citizen should not generally come to the UK using an EEA family permit. However, a non-EEA family member of a British citizen living abroad can apply for an EEA family permit to join the British citizen on their return to the UK. We can help with your EEA Family Permit application and queries.

EEA Countries:

Currently the countries which make up the EEA are as follow:

  • Austria;
  • Belgium;
  • Croatia;
  • Cyprus;
  • Czech Republic;
  • Denmark;
  • Estonia;
  • Finland;
  • France;
  • Germany;
  • Greece;
  • Hungary;
  • Iceland;
  • Ireland;
  • Italy;
  • Latvia;
  • Liechtenstein;
  • Lithuania;
  • Luxembourg;
  • Malta;
  • Netherlands;
  • Norway;
  • Poland;
  • Portugal;
  • Romania;
  • Slovakia;
  • Slovenia;
  • Spain;
  • Sweden; and
  • UK.

EEA Family Permit for ‘Family Members’

An EEA family permit is distributed overseas to nationals of countries outside the European Economic Area who are family members of EEA nationals.

Definition of a ‘family member’ is the following: • Your husband, wife or civil partner; • Your children or grandchildren (or the children or grandchildren of your husband, wife or civil partner) who are under 21 years of age or are a dependent on you; and • The parents or grandparents of you and your husband, wife or civil partner, if they are dependent on you.

It should be noted that that if you are a student only your husband, wife or civil partner and dependent children have a right of residency.

However, if you and your partner are not married or in a civil partnership, you must be able to show that you are in a sustainable relationship with one another.

Extended family members do not have an automatic right to live in the UK, such as brothers, sisters and cousins. In order to be considered, they must show that they are dependent on you.

If you do not fall under the definition ‘family member’ you cannot apply for an EEA permit.

EEA Registration Certificate

An EEA Registration Certificate is available for EEA or Swiss nationals and is a document certifying your permanent residence in the UK under European law. This is available if you have lived in the UK for a continuous period of five years but it is important to note that you do not need a documentation establishing your right of residence in the UK if you are an EEA national.

EEA Residence Cards

If you are the non-European family member of an EEA or Swiss national, and you have come to the UK with them, you can apply for a residence card. This is a document which confirms your right of residence under European law. Your residence card may take the form of an endorsement in your passport (also called a ‘vignette’), or it may be a separate document called an ‘immigration status document’. A residence card is normally valid for 5 years from the date when it is issued.

Indefinite Leave to Remain/Settlement

After you have lived legally in the UK for a certain length of time, you may be able to apply for permission to settle in the UK. Settlement is also known as ‘Indefinite Leave to Remain’. If you are currently in the UK, your right to apply for settlement will depend on your current immigration category whereas if you are applying to enter the UK as the child of a British citizen or a person who is settled here, you may obtain immediate permission to settle here permanently. Please contact us for assistance with your application for indefinite leave to remain. We will ensure that we have the correct documents to support and strengthen your case and complete and submit your Settlement/ ILR application.

Qualifying criteria for Settlement/Indefinite Leave to Remain

To meet the requirements of Settlement Visas/Indefinite Leave to Remain:

  • You must spend a number of years in the UK, depending on your immigration status, before you can apply for permanent residence.
  • You will need to show that you will continue to meet the requirements of your current visa to be eligible for ILR.
  • You need to have stayed in the UK for most of the time that you have held your Visa.
  • You must also plan to remain present and settled in the UK.
  • You will need to pass the ‘Life in the UK’ test and have a speaking and listening qualification in English.

What happens once you have obtained Settlement / Indefinite Leave to Remain

  • You will have unrestricted entry to the UK
  • You will be free to work within the UK with no restrictions
  • There is no time limit with the UK settlement visa; however it is always recommended that if you have settled status in the UK you should not spend more than two years outside of the United Kingdom (Living outside the UK for an extended period may result in the ILR being cancelled).
  • If you away from the UK. Staying in the UK for a short period of time each year for a number of years may also lead to ILR being cancelled.

Immigration Law

Student Visas

The Student Visitor category is for nationals of countries outside the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland. If you are a short-term student and wish to come to the UK to study you must have been accepted on a course of study in the UK. In order to obtain a Tier 4 Student Visit Visa you must satisfy a certain criteria. When entering the UK your passport will be stamped, stating the duration of your stay. Your stay cannot be extended beyond this provision. If you wish to stay in the UK longer to study a longer course or if you wish to work and study you will have to apply for a Student Visa.

If you wish to apply for a Student Visitor visa we can help you with your visa application and queries. Qualifying criteria For your application for a Tier4 Student Visit Visa to be successful:

  • You will need to prove that you are registered on a course of study;
  • You must plan to visit the UK for a maximum of 6 months and leave at the end of that period; and
  • You must be able to show that you also have enough money to support your stay in the UK.

What happens once you are in the United Kingdom?

You can only stay in the UK for up to six months with a Student Visit Visa. However English language students wishing to attend exclusively English language courses will be able to apply for a student visitor visa allowing them to stay for up to 11 months. The extended student visitor visa will only be available to applicants outside the UK.

You will not be able to take a work placement, bring defendants, extend your stay or switch into other courses at the end of your stay with a Student Visit Visa.

Asylum and Political Refugees

Asylum protection is given under the 1951 United Nations Convention which deals with the status of Refugees when an individual has left their country and is unable to go back because they have a well-founded fear of persecution. In addition to this, the UK adheres to the European Convention on Human Rights which prevents the UK authorities sending someone back to their country where there is a real risk that they will be exposed to torture, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.

Even if you do not qualify for recognition as an Asylum Seeker, you can get temporary permission to stay here, which can lead to settlement, if there are humanitarian reasons why you should stay in the United Kingdom. Please contact us in order to discuss your application and we will be happy to assist you to make a claim for Asylum in the UK and deal with the Home Office on your behalf. We can also deal with a refusal if your case has been refused.

To meet the requirements of an Asylum Seeker:

  • You must have left your country and be unable to go back because you have a well-founded fear of persecution because of your race, religion, nationality, political opinion or membership particular social group.

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+44 (020) 8676 3449

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252 Kirkdale Road
London SE26 4NL