How to challenge a visit visa refusal by Judicial Review in the UK

A visit/tourist visa is different from a work visa. Every year many people apply for a tourist visa to the UK but are denied it due to various reasons. Sometimes you may be denied the visa on unjustified grounds. This is where legal agents can help you get your visa accepted.

You have three options in case you are denied a visit visa to the UK-

  1. Reapply
  2. Appeal
  3. Judicial Review

When can Judicial Review be Pursued?

It can only be pursued when you have no alternative remedy. It is a challenge to the lawfulness of the court and the judge will see whether the law has been correctly applied or not.

No further evidence can be submitted at this stage and this review needs to be filed within three months of refusal decision.

Why Go For a Judicial Review?

If you have already been denied the visa then making a new application would make less sense as the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO) of the UK would take refusal decision as the starting point and is likely to refuse a new application if previous concerns have not been addressed.

You can file for an appeal and since July 2013 you can lodge an appeal for the visit visa to the UK, on human rights grounds. This appeal will go to the Home Office of the UK and it may so happen that after months of waiting, the judge decides that human rights cannot be engaged in your case.

And so when a new application or an appeal is unsuitable or time-consuming and risky in your case, a judicial review may be appropriate.

Pre-Action Protocol

Before lodging a judicial review a “letter before claim” should be sent to the Home Office to reconsider their own decision. The ECO may overturn the decision after reviewing the grounds. A minimum of 14 days is taken by the Home Office for this and this letter may lead to overturning the decision which means you will get the visa without the court being involved.

If the decision is maintained or there is no response then you can file for the review.

Arguably Grounds for Unlawful Decision

  • Some of the following grounds to be looking are:

  • Has the ECO made any factual error?

  • Has the ECO taken into account all material considerations?

  • Has the ECO provided all the reasons for refusing your visa to enable you to effectively challenge the refusal decision?

  • Is the decision in consideration with the Home Office?

For more information and legally correct advice contact

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