Author: Adarsh Girijadevi

Immigration law firm Lupins based in Wembley Park ceased to trade

Immigration law firm Lupins based in Wembley Park has ceased trading after getting into financial difficulties. The London firm, well known in the immigration sector, halted operations from 28 September and has handed over its client files to Duncan Lewis, which has also taken on some ex-Lupins staff. Lupins clients can contact Lubna Chauhan at Duncan Lewis by email or on 03337720409 to access their file or to confirm that they are happy for Duncan Lewis to take over their case. There is speculation that Lupins’s difficulties were partly caused by legal aid cuts and further demonstrates the challenges faced by immigration firms relying on legal aid.

What to do next?

Duncan Lewis is holding all of Lupins immigration client files. This means that if Lupins were your immigration Solicitors, the paperwork is now all with Duncan Lewis. However, this does not mean that Duncan Lewis will be continuing to act for you in your immigration case. If you would like them to do so, you will need to complete a consent form allowing them to act for you, but you do not have to continue with them. You are free to choose a different immigration solicitor at any time, so in this case there is no problem with you giving consent to Duncan Lewis to continue to act in your immigration matter, or to instruct a different immigration lawyer.

We are a multi award winning Immigration law firm based in the same location – Wembley Park and also contracted with the legal aid agency to undertake public funded work. We would be pleased to discuss and to take on any immigration matters previously handled by Lupins Solicitors. Please do not hesitate to contact us  on 0330 058 3929 if you require any further assistance.


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Theresa May backs immigration plan that favours skilled workers

Theresa May’s cabinet has agreed a post-Brexit immigration system that will offer visas to immigrants in a tiered system based on skills and wealth, a flagship policy that is expected to be one of her key announcements to the Conservative party conference next week.

Downing Street hopes the migration policy will appeal to party members concerned about May’s leadership and the Brexit negotiations, which last week appeared to have reached an impasse at Salzburg when EU leaders declared her Chequers proposals would not work.

The Brexit negotiations update was held at the end of the cabinet meeting on Monday afternoon and the only person who referred to a Canada-style trade deal was the prime minister herself in her own presentation. She added that some EU heads of government were being more constructive than others behind the scenes, but did not specify which leaders.The meeting amounted to a moment of relief for the under-pressure prime minister, who heads to New York on Tuesday for a United Nations meeting before turning her attention to the party conference. One cabinet source said May was “just trying to get through the conference season intact”.

A white paper setting out the new immigration policy is due to be published later this autumn.

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MAC recommends removing the cap on Tier 2 work visas after Brexit

The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) has published its research into migration from the EU and how it should be managed after Brexit. The committee recommends a policy allowing greater access for higher-skilled migration while restricting access for lower-skilled workers. It suggests extending the current scheme for high-skilled non-EEA migrants – known as a Tier 2 visa – to those from EEA countries as well. As part of this process, the cap on the total amount of workers allowed to enter under Tier 2 should be abolished and the range of jobs eligible for the visas expanded, the committee says. Current policy is to allow 20,700 high-skilled workers into the UK each year on Tier 2 visas. The current salary threshold for such visas is £30,000, which the report says should be retained. You can read the full report here.


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Recent changes in Immigration routes to tackle BREXIT labour shortage

UK Government has announced various addition of Immigration routes and Pilot schemes in order to tackle Brexit labour shortage to ensure smooth availability of skilled labour in the UK. In this article, we look over some of the recent routes introduced over the last few months.

Seasonal Workers – 2,500 migrants a year 

British farmers will be allowed to recruit 2,500 non-EU migrants a year under a new government pilot that will help alleviate an anticipated shortage of seasonal workers after Brexit. Under the new scheme, which will run for two years from next spring, non-EU nationals who travel to the UK to work on fruit and vegetable farms will be able to stay for six months before returning. This two-year pilot is expected to ease the workforce pressures faced by farmers during busy times of the year.

Overseas researchers – UKRI Science, Research and Academia

The ‘UKRI Science, Research and Academia’ scheme opened on 6 July 2018 by way of an addition to the Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Government Authorised Exchange) visa route in an effort to encourage the ongoing growth of the research sector in the UK.  The Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Government Authorised Exchange) route is the principal visa route by which non-EEA nationals who wish to undertake training and work experience are able to come to the UK.  The new scheme allows non-EEA researchers, scientists and academics to come to the UK for up to 2 years.The scheme is operated by UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) and means that they, along with 12 approved independent research organisations, including the Natural History Museum, are able to directly sponsor highly skilled researchers to work and train in the UK. Sponsored researchers include academics, researchers, scientists, research engineers or other skilled research technology specialists who will be hosted through an approved research institute, in a supernumerary role.

New UK Startup Visa for Entrepreneurs

The new route, announced during London Tech Week, will widen the applicant pool of talented entrepreneurs and make the visa process faster and smoother for entrepreneurs coming to the UK. It will replace a visa route which was exclusively for graduates, opening it up to a wider pool of talented business founders. It will require applicants to have acquired an endorsement from a university or approved business sponsor, including accelerators. The visa route has been designed following advice from the Migration Advisory Committee and feedback from the tech sector and other stakeholders. This route will launch in Spring 2019, further details will be announced in due course.

Removal of Doctors & Nurses from Tier 2 Visa Cap

The removal will mean there will be no restriction on the numbers of doctors and nurses who can be employed through the Tier 2 visa route – giving the ability to recruit more international doctors and nurses to provide outstanding patient care when required. The Tier 2 visa route, which has had an annual cap of 20,700 since 2011, has in recent months seen the number of applications exceed the monthly allocation of available places. This has been driven, in large part, by demand from the NHS, which accounts for around 40% of all Tier 2 places. As well as providing a boost to the NHS, it will also free up hundreds of additional places a month within the cap for other highly skilled occupations, such as engineers, IT professionals and teachers.

Tier 1 Exceptional Talent – Increased to 2000 per year

The first big change is that the number of places available per year has been doubled from 1000 to 2000. This is to be allocated between the five Designated Competent Bodies (DCBs) according to demand. The next big change is the introduction of accelerated settlement after three years, bringing the category in-line with Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) and (Investor) routes which have similar routes to settlement before five years.This means that recognised world leaders in their field can apply to settle after three years, and potential world leaders must wait until year five.

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Provision of Legal Aid Services to our clients

We are happy to inform that from 01st September 2018, we have started providing Legal Aid Services to all our clients at our firm. Legal aid is generally available for very limited immigration and asylum cases. The following matters may qualify for some advice, assistance and/or representation:

  • Detention & Bail cases;
  • Applications for Leave to Remain under the domestic violence rule;
  • Applications for leave by those identified as victims of trafficking;
  • Proceedings before the Special Immigration Appeals Commission. This includes deportation and deprivation of citizenship cases where information is to be kept confidential for reasons of national security;
  • Many asylum cases & appeals;
  • Applications for Leave to Remain or settlement as a refugee with humanitarian protection/discretionary leave under Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights, ie: freedom from torture or inhuman and degrading treatment;
  • Some Judicial Review Applications, in limited circumstances.

Legal fees for eligible clients will be paid by the Legal Aid Agency. You can check whether legal aid is available for your type of case online, by calling Civil Legal Advice (0345 345 4 345), or by contacting us. City Legal can assist you in establishing whether you qualify for legal aid. Even if you are not eligible for Legal Aid, our specialist immigration lawyers can advise, assist and represent you at very competitive rates.

Please visit for more details or to make a referral. Alternatively you may call us on 0330 058 3929 (Option 3) or email us: [email protected]

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Court Of Appeal rules on the validity of UK visa applications made online.

In the case of R (Singh) v The Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] EWCA Civ 1669 the Court of Appeal discussed transitional provisions in the Immigration Rules that apply to online applications which must be supported with further evidence sent later by post. The appellant argued that an application made online without supporting evidence was not valid and therefore did not count as an application for the purpose of deciding whether the “old” or “new” Rules applied. The Court of Appeal rejected this argument and ruled that the online application did count and therefore the previous Rules would apply. This meant the appellant could not benefit from a change to the Rules which required the Home Office to chase applicants for missing evidence and give them an additional 10 days to submit it.

Mr Singh had leave to remain as a student and made an online application for further leave on 22 October 2014, shortly before his leave expired. On 16 October 2014 the Secretary of State for the Home Department had changed the Immigration Rules on supporting documents. Previously, applicants had 15 days to supply those documents by post. If the deadline was missed the application would be automatically rejected. The new Rules told Home Office caseworkers to instead send a letter chasing up the missing documents and wait for a further ten days before rejecting the application. At the same time the Secretary of State made a Rule stating that applications made before 6 November 2014 would be decided on the basis of the old rule and applications made after that date would benefit from the new rule.

Mr Singh argued that this transitional rule only referred to “valid” applications made before 6 November 2014. His application never became valid because he had not sent his passport to the Home Office, therefore it did not fall to be considered under the old rules and he should benefit from the additional ten days provided by the new rules. Although the outcome of this case is unfortunate for Mr Singh it is difficult to challenge the conclusion reached by the Court of Appeal. It would be very surprising if the online application were not to count as an application as a matter of law when that term is used in other parts of the Immigration Rules.

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BBC pull video aimed at children claiming immigration is in ‘our DNA

The BBC film aimed at GCSE pupils claimed Britain was “multicultural long before curry and carnival” and there isn’t such a thing as “pure Briton”. The assumptions made in the video, which had been in circulation since May, sparked a backlash and BBC was forced to withdraw the documentary. In the animated video, part of a series called Don’t Hate the Debate, the voiceover said: “Think immigration is a recent thing? Think again. “Because you see, you got the Celts, the Romans, the Anglo-Saxons and the Vikings, the Normans, the Flemish, the Irish, black Britons and Jewish people.

The video then seemed to issue a thinly-veiled attack on some right-wing parties calling for measures to curb immigration. Following the withdrawal of the video, a BBC spokesman said: “Don’t Hate the Debate is a series of films designed to help teachers enable classroom debates about topical issues.


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Statement of changes

Statement of Changes Appendix EU – status for EU nationals and their families

The statement of changes to the Immigration Rules CM9675 of 20/7/18 contains new Appendix EU to be added to the rules and in force on 28/8/18 for the initial test phase. This is voluntary and applies only to persons on the payroll of the 12 NHS Trusts, and students and persons on the payroll of Liverpool Hope University, Liverpool John Moores University, and The University of Liverpool. The scheme will be rolled out on a phased basis from late 2018, to be fully open by 30 March 2019 (further details over the summer).

This, with parallel measures Immigration (Provision of Physical Data) (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2018 and The Immigration and Nationality (Fees) (Amendment) (EU Exit) Regulations 2018  is intended to align with the Statement of Intent on the EU Settlement Scheme of 21/6/18.

Appendix EU (see text in SoC) is structured as follows, in outline, by paragraphs:

  • Annex 1: definitions
  • EU2 to EU8: requirements and procedure for grants of settled status (ILR)
  • EU9: validity requirements for applications
  • EU11: eligibility requirements for settled status (ILR) for EU citizens and their family members, and EU12 for the family members of certain British citizens
  • EU14: eligibility requirements for pre-settled status (5 years’ LTR)
  • EU15 and EU16: basis on which an application under Appendix EU will or may be refused on grounds of serious criminality, other public policy considerations or deception, as reflected in the draft text of the Withdrawal Agreement.

Paragraph 1 of the SoC disapplies the general grounds for refusal in Part 9 for applications under App EU, except para 323(ii)  323. A person’s leave to enter or remain may be curtailed: … (ii) if he ceases to meet the requirements of the Rules under which his leave to enter or remain was granted;

Appendix EU provides that:

  • EU citizens and their family members who, by 31/12/20, have been continuously resident in the UK for five years will be eligible for ‘settled status’ (ILR).
  • EU citizens and their family members who arrive by 31/12/20, but who have resided here for less than 5 years, will generally be eligible for ‘pre-settled status’ (five years’ limited leave to remain in the UK), enabling them to stay until they have reached the five-year threshold, then apply for settled status.
  • Close family members (a spouse, civil partner, durable partner, dependent child or grandchild, and dependent parent or grandparent) living overseas will be able to join an EU citizen resident here after 31/12/20, where the relationship existed on that date and continues to exist when the person wishes to come to the UK. Provision for future children will be made, in line with the draft Agreement. A family member of a British citizen who is lawfully resident in the UK by 31/12/20 under Surinder Singh Reg 9 of the 2016 EEA Regulations will be eligible to apply under Appendix EU

The Explanatory Memorandum further states in paras 7.3-7 that

  • the requirements in App EU accord with the Withdrawal Agreement except where the UK applies more favourable criteria
  • beyond the Withdrawal Agreement terms there is no further discretion to refuse a valid application
  • administrative burdens will be minimised by only requesting necessary information (!)
  • Appendix EU is self-contained and displaces any provision made elsewhere in the Immigration Rules which would otherwise apply, e.g. in Part 1 (leave to enter or stay in the UK).
  • nationals of Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein are not covered by the draft Withdrawal Agreement, but the intention is to secure ‘a similar deal’ for them and for UK citizens living in those countries
  • nationals of Ireland enjoy residence rights under the Common Travel Area arrangements between UK and ROI which are separate from the EU and not affected by the UK’s withdrawal, but they or their family members may apply under App EU if they wish
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Update on Retained Right of Residence as a former spouse of a qualified person.

On 20th April 2018, the Court of Appeal and the Secretary of State in the case of Baigazieva v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] EWCA Civ 1088, clarified the law in relation to Retained Right of Residence. Prior to this case, it was interpreted that non-EEA national must prove that that their EEA national spouse was a qualified person at the time of the divorce decree. However, it is now established that the non-EEA national must only show that their EEA national spouse was a qualified person at the initiation of their divorce proceedings.

The Court of Appeal and the Secretary of State identified that the period between the commencement of divorce proceedings and the grant of divorce decree is quite critical. It was understood that once the termination of marriage is initiated, it will be unreasonable and highly-unlikely for the non-EEA national to obtain evidence of the EEA-national spouse’s employment status as the relationship ties are broken and dissolved. Due to this, the Court of Appeal clarified the interpretation of Regulation 10(5) of the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016 and Article 13(2) of the Directive 2004/38/EC.

The position of the law in relation to retained right of residence is now clear. A non-EEA national will only be able to obtain retained right of residence once the divorce is granted legally, however the conditions for retaining right of residence will only be based until the commencement of divorce proceedings.

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New Statement of Changes to Immigration Rules July 2018

New Statement of changes was passed to the Parliament on the 15th of June 2018. These changes will come into force on 6thof July 2018.

Changes are applicable to:

  • Returning Residents
  • Overstayers
  • Tier 1
  • Tier 2
  • Absences for Indefinite Leave to Remain Applications
  • Students
  • Afghan Citizens
  • Dubs Amendment and Section 67 of the Immigration Act 2016
  • Turkish Workers
  • Other Changes

Returning Residents

For those that have been absent from the UK for longer than two years, must apply for a leave to enter by re-establishing that they have convincing ties to the UK and that they do intend to make UK their permanent home. Those who have been absent for under two years can return without a visa. The new Rules also state that exceptions to the two-year rule for family members only now apply for the permanent diplomats.


Paragraph 39E of the Immigration Rules allows Overstayers to make two consecutive applications as an exception. However, from 6th of July they will only be able to make and rely on the exception once. Also, Paragraph 320 (7BB) of the Rules will have changes. This means that out-of-time application made under the application of paragraph 39E will disregard the period of overstay pursuant paragraph 320(7B).


Jamey’s leave was expiring on 05th  June 2018. Application for leave to remain as a spouse was submitted on 07th  June 2018. This application was out of time but within 14 days of his leave expiring. Jamey explained that he had been medically not well and hospitalised and hence could not have applied before. SSHD accepts this as a good reason beyond Jamey’s control, such that his application can be considered under the rules, disregarding the overstay. However, Jamey’s application is refused because he did not meet the English language requirement. The refusal is dated 10th  July.

Previously, relying on paragraph 39E, Jamey would have had an opportunity to make another application by 24th July, and again disregarding the overstay. From 6 July, this will no longer be possible for Jamey. It is now only possible for an applicant to apply for further leave within 14 days of the expiry of the previous leave disregarding the overstay once.

Tier 1

There will no longer be rules in relation to indefinite leave to remain for Tier 1 (General) Migrants as the route is now closed as of 6th of April 2018. Applications submitted after 6th of July 2018 in relation to Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) will widen for arts. The endorsement of arts applicants will now include individuals in the fashion industry.

Applicants under Tier 1 (Investor) can no longer take out dividend and interest payments generated before the investment portfolio purchase. In addition to this, Applicants must prove that the funds are only, duly invested in qualifying investments and that no loan is or has been secured against those funds. In relation to Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) applications, minor changes will reflect the timing requirement of letters from legal representatives and will reflect the provision for accountants to approve that the investment has in fact been only made on the applicant.

Tier 2

Visas for skilled non-EU workers were always limited. From 6th of July 2018, doctors and nurses will be exempt.

  • Deletion of references to jobs sponsored at level 4 of the Regulated Qualifications Framework, as, since June 2012, this was increased to RQF level 6.
  • Clarification that an applicant cannot own more than 10% of shares, even if indirectly (for example via another corporate entity), in a limited company sponsoring them, save for certain exceptions. The old Rules did not specify that an application could not own the shares indirectly.
  • Applicants applying after 6 July 2018 who have been absent on maternity, paternity, shared parental or adoption leave will now need to submit evidence of the adoption or birth.
  • Finally, a migrant who has been absent for work without pay for four weeks or more will no longer have their Tier 2 leave curtailed when the absence was for assisting with a national or international humanitarian or environmental crisis overseas, providing their sponsor agreed to the absence(s) for that purpose.

Absences for Indefinite Leave to Remain Applications

Secretary of State, introduced a transitional arrangement to ensure that the new absences calculation rule does not adversely affect applicants whose absences occurred during leave granted under Rules in place prior to 11 January. A second change to the Rules relating to when continuous residence is broken brings the entry clearance provisions in line with the more generous in-country provisions. Continuous residence will usually not be considered to be broken when the applicant left and returned provided they had leave, and there are some exceptions. Two new exceptions have been added:

  • where the applicant makes an application for entry clearance within 14 days of the leave expiring and the Secretary of State considers that there was a good reason beyond the control of the applicant or their representative why the application could not be made during the currency of continuing limited leave; or
  • where a successful application for entry clearance is made following the refusal of a previous application to which an exception applied, and the application was made within 14 days of that refusal (or the expiry of the time limit for making an in-time application for administrative review, or any administrative review or appeal being concluded, withdrawn or abandoned or lapsing).


Students will be subject to the Academic Technology Approval Scheme if they are going to study and learn knowledge and skills that can be used in the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. All applicants must now obtain a certificate before they proceed irregardless of the length of their studies. Students will also be able to study on a study abroad programme even if the program was introduced newly in the current course.

Postgraduate migrants will now be able to bring their dependents with them to the UK as long as the course is six months or more. Students can provide evidence of previous qualifications online. This includes electronic copies from awarding bodies online checking services. However, this is up to the discretion of Home Office as they still have the right to ask and see the original copy.

As per documentary evidence requirements, the list varies depending on the country. The new changes will expand the country list allowing students to decide which evidence to submit based on where the application is made. Therefore, they will have the ability to choose from their country of residence or their country of nationality.

Afghan Citizens

New Rules are introduced to provide a route to settlement for Afghan citizens granted leave under these schemes, and their immediate family members. To be eligible for settlement, Afghan nationals and their family members will need to have lived in the UK with leave granted under the scheme for five years, and not fall for refusal because of good character. The application will be free of charge and there will be a specific form for settlement applications under this route, although that has not yet been released.

Dubs Amendment and Section 67 of the Immigration Act 2016

Children who do not qualify for international protection or humanitarian protection but are admitted to the UK under the Dubs amendment, can now be granted a new leave, Section 67 of the Immigration Act 2016 leave.

This leave will be granted if it is proven that:

  1. the person is not excluded from being a refugee under regulation 7 of the Refugee or Person in Need of International Protection (Qualification) Regulations 2006 or excluded from a grant of humanitarian protection under paragraph 339D of these Rules;
  2. the person’s application for refugee status or humanitarian protection has been refused;
  3. there are no reasonable grounds for regarding the person as a danger to the security of the United Kingdom;
  4. the person has not been convicted by a final judgment of a particularly serious crime, and does not constitute a danger to the community of the United Kingdom; and
  5. none of the general grounds for refusal in paragraph 322 apply.

If the conditions are satisfied, the child will be given a leave for five years. The leave will not restrict the child from studying, working and accessing public funds. Furthermore, where the child is unable to obtain a national passport, they will be able to obtain a UK travel document as long as they are not refused on grounds of national security or public order. If the child completes five years of residence in the UK, they will be eligible for indefinite leave to remain and will not incur any application fees. Similarly, dependent children will also be given leave as long as the main applicant that has the parental responsibility is granted leave.

Turkish Workers

The UK Government is introducing the European Communities Association Agreement also known as Appendix ECAA or Ankara Agreement. This route will allow Turkish workers, business individuals and their family members to obtain indefinite leave to remain in the UK as long as certain conditions are met. They are as follows:

  1. their last grant of leave was under the ECAA;
  2. they have lived in the UK continuously for five years;
  3. they have shown sufficient knowledge of the English language and sufficient knowledge about life in the United Kingdom, in accordance with Appendix KoLL;
  4. they have been able to support any family members with them without recourse to public funds to which they are not entitled; and
  5. they do not fall for refusal under general grounds for refusal.

Dependent children will be given indefinite leave to remain as long as the main applicant is granted leave. Dependent children do not have to prove the five years residence. However, partners of the main applicant need to show that they have resided in the UK for five years before they can be eligible for the indefinite leave to remain. Therefore, if the main applicant obtains the indefinite leave to remain before the partner reaches the five-year residence period, the partner can apply for further leave to remain so that they can obtain the five-year residence.

Other Changes

From 1st of July 2018, Croatian nationals will no longer require authorization to work or require registration cards to prove right to work as they will benefit from the entirety of EU Movement Rules. This will allow Croatian Nationals to apply freely as there will no longer be any more limits under the Tier 1 and Tier 2 route.

An adopted child who has limited leave as per Family Immigration Rules and is aged 18 years or above at the time of the application for indefinite leave to remain, must be able to satisfy the Knowledge of Language and Life requirement. Finally, changes will be made to the list of approved government authorized exchange schemes for Tier 5 migrants.

The full statement of changes can be viewed here.

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