Illegal immigrants will be kicked out of Britain BEFORE they can appeal under new plans


ILLEGAL immigrants would be deported from Britain before they get a chance to appeal stopping thousands from prolonging their stay by lodging court reviews.

The reforms would mean that those who have entered the UK illegally or overstayed their visas would be sent home on a plane before any judicial review began.

The plans – which will be introduced by the Conservatives if they win the election – will stop thousands of immigrants from exploiting the court system to prolong their stays in Britain.

It is hoped that the crackdown will slash legal costs for lengthy appeal processes, saving taxpayers money.

The only exception would be for asylum seekers or foreigners who would face “irreversible” harm if sent back home to a dangerous country.

If they win the election, the Tories are also planning to put “rocket boosters” on current sanctions that remove benefits from immigrants who will not learn English.

Officials working for home secretary Theresa May have met with the Department of Work and Pensions to discuss how they could include housing and sickness benefits if the Tories are elected in May.

Doctors and nurses will also be forced to direct foreigners who cannot speak English to language courses.

Almost 800,000 immigrants in Britain admit they struggle with English or can’t speak it at all, official figures show.

They can currently claim up to £400 per week in housing benefits.

‘The best visa service in the world just got better’ – Sir James Bevan KCMG, UK High Commissioner to India


Sir James Bevan KCMG, UK High Commissioner to India said….

I’m delighted to be here in Gurgaon to open this new visa facility. I have three messages I want to convey to you today.

  • First: the UK runs the best visa service in the world here in India.
  • Second: with the opening of this facility today, that service just got better.
  • And third: we’re going to make further improvements in future.

We run the best visa service in the world.

Let me start with my first proposition: that the UK visa service here is the best in the world. I say that because:

The UK visa operation here in India is the UK’s biggest visa operation in the world. In India we process over 400,000 visa applications every year.

The UK operation here in India is also the biggest visa operation of any country in India. With the opening of this facility in Gurgaon, the UK now has 13 visa application centres across India*.

Our visa operation is one of the most efficient in India. In 2014, the average time to process a UK visa was just 6 days.

Our service delivers what our Indian customers want most: their visa.

Many Indians think it’s hard to get a visa for the UK. Wrong: most Indians who apply for one get it. In 2014, 91% of Indian applications were successful. If you are a genuine traveller, you will get your visa.

Many Indians also think it’s impossible to get a work visa for the UK. Wrong again: In fact, we issue more work visas to Indians than we issue to any other nationality in the world. In 2014 the UK issued over 60,000 work visas to Indians, more than we issued to China, Australia and the US combined. And in 2014 more than two thirds of the Intra-Company Transfer visas we issued globally – visas for professional workers going to work for their company in the UK – went to Indians.

Our visa service also delivers a great deal for Indian students. We want India’s best and brightest to come to the UK for their education. So we have set no limit – no limit – on the numbers of Indian students who can come to Britain. If you have a place at a UK university, can support yourself financially and speak decent English, you will get your visa. The proof of that is that in 2014, 85% of Indian student visa applications were successful and we issued over 12,600 visas to Indian students.

And our service delivers a great deal for Indian visitors and business people too. Every year we welcome over 300,000 Indians to the UK as visitors, and over 100,000 Indian businesspeople. Those numbers continue to rise.

It just got better: Gurgaon

That’s why I say that the visa service the UK provides here in India is not just the biggest but the best there is. And today this service gets better.

Because here in Gurgaon we are launching a new facility, our first ever standalone Premium Lounge. From Monday (30 March) Indians who want to travel to the UK can apply for their visa in this new exclusive facility. It will allow our customers to apply for their visa more quickly, more conveniently – especially for those who work or live in and around Gurgaon – and in greater comfort. Gurgaon is an increasingly important business hub so I’m glad that we’ve been able to meet the requests of Indian and British business communities by opening here.

Those who choose to use this new facility will be able to submit their application and give their biometrics quickly. They will be notified by SMS when their visa is ready and their passport with visa will be couriered back to them. For all that they will pay a relatively modest charge of R2,500, on top of the cost of their visa. In addition should they wish they will be able to apply via the priority service and get their visa within three to five days.

Gurgaon is the latest in our expanding list of Premium Service Lounges which are now available in Ahmedabad, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, New Delhi and – from next month – Kolkata.

And we will continue to improve it.

But we know this is a competitive market. Which is why we are committed to constant improvement in our visa service. And we have made a lot of improvements over the last few years.

In 2013 when Prime Minister David Cameron visited India he announced our new same day visa service, the first of its kind anywhere in the world, now available in New Delhi, Mumbai and Chennai.

Most recently we introduced our new passport passback service. This means that if you plan to visit other countries in addition to the UK, you can have your passport back while we process your visa application in order to apply for the other visas you need. We are currently running a pilot in Bangalore which has extended our priority visa service from visitors to student and workers. This means those applying for student or work visas can pay to receive a visa decision in just three to five days. We hope to extend this service more widely later this year.

And we plan to keep on improving. I can announce today that next month we will open a 14th Visa Application Centre, in Jaipur. And we are looking at plans for more in the future.

So don’t believe the myths. The UK is open – for business travellers, for visitors, for students, for qualified workers. Indians who visit the UK have a good time and leave with a good impression. We aim to make that good impression on you before you even leave India – with the best visa service there is.

*Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chandigarh, Chennai, Gurgaon, Hyderabad, Jalandhar, Kochi, Kolkata, Mumbai (North), Mumbai (South), New Delhi, Pune.

Tier 2 Sponsorship CoS Allocation Renewal

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As the end of financial year approaches, companies who are registered as sponsors for Tier 2 (General) and Tier 2 (Intra-company transfer) visas should look to renew their annual unrestricted Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) allocation.

Existing allocations will expire on 5 April 2015 and before that date businesses should consider their sponsorship requirements for the upcoming year. Companies will need a CoS for any existing sponsored employees whose visa is due to expire, for any existing employees they may wish to sponsor to remain in the UK, for any potential migrant workers they may wish to hire with salaries over £150,000 per year and for any employees based abroad they may wish to bring to the UK in the next twelve months on a short or long term basis.

In the last 12 months we have seen a change in approach from the Home Office when dealing with these requests. Previously most applications were granted without further enquiries. However, in recent months, the Home Office has been asking for further information about the potential roles that the certificates will be used for.

When considering the number of certificates required, we recommend providing the Home Office with as much detail as possible. This can include details of the roles that will be filled by migrant workers, the salaries that the migrant workers will be paid and details of any employees who will need to have their visas extended.

If a company misses the deadline for requesting an annual allocation, or not enough certificates are granted, the company can make a further request at any stage during the course of the next 12 months. There is no application fee for requesting a CoS, but processing times can vary and we recommend applying as soon as a potential need is identified.

Visit for more details or call us on 020 3695 4626.

Marriages and civil partnerships in the UK


James Broken-shire, Minister for Security and Immigration announced that Part 4 of the Immigration Act 2014 is to be brought into full effect on 2 March 2015. This amends the procedure for marriage and civil partnership for everyone (not just foreign nationals) and creates new powers for duties to report sham marriages and the investigation and preventing of sham marriages.

The Home Office estimates that under the new provisions, 35,000 marriages per year will need to be referred to the Home Office for potential investigation and that 6,000 marriages will be investigated.

For most marriages or civil partnerships you must give at least 28 full days’ notice at your local register office. Your notice will be publicly displayed in the register office for 28 days.

You may also need to give notice here if you plan to marry or form a civil partnership abroad. Ask the overseas authority if you’ll need a ‘certificate of no impediment’.

You can only give notice at a register office if you have lived in the registration district for at least the past 7 days.

Biometric Residence Permit (BRP) rollout to overseas applicants


From March, 2015 any non-EEA national applying from overseas for permission to stay in the UK for more than six months will be required to apply for a BRP and then to collect it within ten days of their first arrival in the UK. This change will be delivered over a 4 month period between March and July 2015, subject to parliamentary approval.

The basic visa application process will remain largely unchanged but the applicant will be required to provide their intended date of travel, a UK address and post code. The UK post code submitted as part of the application process will be used to identify the branch of the Post Office to which the Biometric Residence Permit will be sent for collection by the applicant. Help will be provided as part of the application process to guide the applicant in selecting the most appropriate Post Office collection branch.

Successful applicants will receive a letter informing them of the decision, which will also include notification that they must collect their BRP from the designated Post Office branch within 10 days of arrival in the UK. The passport or travel document will also be endorsed with a 30 day short validity (travel) vignette – which will be valid for thirty days from the expected date of travel provided by the applicant – to enable them to travel to the UK and to collect their BRP.

There is no additional fee for the applicant. The visa application fee remains the same.

Any applicant who does not travel to the UK within the 30-day period of their vignette must apply to the Entry Clearance Officer for a replacement short-term visa to enable them to travel to the UK.

H&R Firm Awards Announced

Many colleges and universities already have MOUs in place with local law enforcement authorities covering a variety of areas.  Our conversations with campus administrators, campus police, and law enforcement have underscored the need for additional tools and strategies that are specifically tailored to the dynamics of sexual assault on campus, as well as the needs of sexual assault survivors.  The task force is providing this sample MOU with that in mind.

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Detroit’s Lawyers Defend Billing

In court papers, lead law firm Jones Day and others that helped Detroit navigate its historic debt restructuring made a case—at the request of U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes—for why their hourly billing rates and final tab are reasonable. Officials at Jones Day, who pointed out they had already cut $17.7 million from their tab, defended the $53.7 million in fees charged for roughly 17 months’ work.

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Real estate attorney Bill Kuehling

Bill advises developers, nonprofit corporations, and public entities on a variety of real estate transactions and infrastructure finance. He has more than 20 years of experience in real estate development, public/private partnerships, land use, and municipal law, and serves as an advisor to national developers seeking tax abatements, tax increment financing, or any other redevelopment opportunities across the St. Louis region.

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For Foreign Law Firms in Australia

The gamble of doing business in Australia came into sharp relief this past week when one U.S. law firm parted ways with Australia while another global firm took its relationship with the country to a whole new level.

New York law firm Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson LLP announced that it’s shutting down its offices in Shanghai and Hong Kong in coming months. Meanwhile, global law firm Dentons unveiled plans to merge with mainland Australia’s largest law firm.

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