By Danielle Cohen Immigration Law Solicitor LinkedinDanielle Cohen has over 20 years of experience as a lawyer and a reputation for offering professional, honest and expert advice.
We acted for a Nigerian national whose British daughter and her British grandchildren all lived in the UK. The daughter worked as a GP with the NHS and the mother, who was previously granted indefinite leave to remain, returned to Nigeria and, due to a period of absence of more than two years, lost her settled status. Her last visit to the UK was in 2013 and, since then, she made a number of applications for entry clearance as a visitor, all of which were refused. We submitted a fresh application which was firstly refused as well, but we challenged the entry clearance interpretation of the genuine intention to visit. Every applicant must satisfy the decision-maker that they are a genuine visitor; that they will leave the UK at the end of the visit; and that they are genuinely seeking entry for the purpose permitted by visitors.
In assessing the genuine intention of visitors, the Secretary of State must assess all the information provided by an applicant. It is only if it is not possible to verify information, despite attempts to do so, that they will have grounds for doubting an applicant’s intention. Given that there was no right of appeal against the refusal, we submitted a pre-action protocol letter threatening to seek leave to Judicially Review against the refusal of the entry clearance. We argued that there was a serious misdirection of the evidence and failure to take relevant evidence into account. We also argued that the decision was unlawful and could not stand.
We initiated leave for Judicial Review proceedings when the Secretary of State did not reverse the decision, and thereafter the Secretary of State agreed to grant leave to enter as a visitor, and to pay our reasonable costs. The mother was granted leave to enter, and came to visit us in the office!