What to do if your UK visa application is taking too long?

Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, the Home Office has tried to come up with several reasons why decisions have taken so long. But despite these things, each applicant has the right to have their case handled in a fair and legal way, whether it’s because of Covid-19 and the effects of Brexit or just because there are so many applications because the new immigration system is being built.

When an immigration application is sent to the Home Office, there is usually a service standard. Now, the Home Office is letting people know about delays that are longer than the normal service standard.

Applications can be delayed for many different reasons, which can affect the applicant’s right to work, their private life, and their finances. These issues are governed by the Immigration Rules and Human Rights Act that apply to the applicant’s situation.

The following steps can be taken to help speed up the decision-making process at the Home Office and avoid endless delays.

Call or write the Home Office.
A person can write or call the Home Office to find out how their immigration application is going and how long it is likely to take for a decision to be made.

If the applicant hasn’t given this information about the status of their application, it should be shown how this is affecting their current situation. For example, a delay in an application could make it harder for a person to travel, go to school, or work.

Contact your Local MP
If a decision still hasn’t been made, they could contact their local MP, who has a lot of power in government departments, to try to speed up the process (such as the Home Office). This could prompt the Home Office to make a quick decision, since the MP can provide details about the applicant’s credentials that can help clear up their case and speed up the processing of their application.

Make a formal complaint in writing
If, after contacting the Home Office about the above, no decision is made, the next step would be to write a formal complaint to the Home Office outlining any worries about the delays and how they might affect the applicant. When making a formal complaint, one would need to include all letters to the Home Office, as well as points from the initial application and legal rules about why an application should be considered and how the delays have had a big effect, as well as how this should be fixed in the future.

Put out a Pre-Action Protocol (PAP)
If the Home Office doesn’t respond to the complaint within 21 days, a Pre-Action Protocol Letter (also called a “PAP” letter) can be sent to the Home Office. This letter says that the problem needs to be solved as soon as possible to avoid going to court. This is a step that a person would want to avoid. So, it is important to get independent legal advice.

How to Ask for a Court Review
If none of the other options work, the last thing you can do is ask the court to look into the situation. This is something that a person needs to be ready for if they are having problems because the Home Office is taking too long or because of something else, like an appeal. To ask for judicial review against the Home Office, it must be clear that the Home Office’s actions that caused the delays were wrong and unfair. So, these steps are taken so that a good result can be reached. Again, you need to get advice from an outside lawyer.

DISCLAIMER: All information posted is merely for educational and informational purposes. It is not intended as a substitute for a professional advise. Should you decide to act upon on the information on this website, you do so at your own risk.

About Us: My name is Atty Lindoven Magsino, BSc, MBA, GDL, LLM, Ph.D. (candidate). I am a Partner & Solicitor /Lawyer and an advocate at Queen’s Park Solicitors. Our main office is located at Suite 4, Stewart House, 56 Longbridge Road, Barking, Essex, England, IG11 8RT, United Kingdom | Telephone: 02036437508 | Fax: 02033931725 | Email: donm@queensparksolicitors.co.uk | http://www.queensparksolicitors.co.uk| Regulated by the Solicitors Regulatory Authority (SRA): 566513

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