Deception Ban UK under paragraph 320(7A): Can I Apply Again?

320 7a can apply again after UK visa and immigration 10 year ban?Usually, an applicant gets 10-year deception ban UK due to an adverse behaviour under paragraph 320(7A) of the Immigration Rules. However, a visit visa applicant gets 10-year deception ban under paragraph V 3.6 of Appendix V. Therefore, the post explains the possible reasons for deception ban UK. And also if an applicant can apply again or challenge the decision to remove the UK 10-year ban due to deception.

Moreover, the post also explains the need of document examination report (DER) and document verification report (DVR) in the context of paragraphs 320(7A) and 320(7B) of the rules.

Why an applicant gets a 10-year deception ban UK?

Perhaps, at times, an applicant’s background, character, behaviour, conduct or associations may be lead to a refusal on general grounds. Accordingly, in the context of immigration rules, an adverse behaviour means deception, false representation, fraud, forgery, nondisclosure of material facts or failure to cooperate. Therefore, entry clearance, leave to remain, or visitor visa application is refused on the general grounds due to a false representation, fraud, forgery or nondisclosure of material facts.

Apparently, for entry clearance and visitor visa application, the use of deception contracts a Refusal on mandatory rather than discretionary general grounds. Therefore, if a refusal falls under paragraph 320(7A) or paragraph V3.6 then the decision maker has no choice but not only to refuse the application but also to impose a 10-year deception ban.

The reasons for getting a UK deception ban relates to false representations, information, documents and not disclosing material facts.

False Representation and 10-year deception ban UK

The Immigration Rules define false representation as a form of deception. Therefore, it is mandatory to refuse an entry clearance, leave to remain or settlement if a person or third party lies or makes an oral or written false statement in relation to an application.

When you have evidence that a person has done this, either as part of their current or previous application, the Immigration Rules state you must refuse the application unless the particular paragraph of the rules allow you to use discretion

False representation is when an applicant or third party lies or makes a false statement in an application. This could be in writing or orally when an applicant is interviewed. Such an application is refused under paragraph 320(7A), even if the false representation is not relevant to the application or decision. And also if the applicant did not know or claims not to know, that false representation has been used.

Fraud and Forgery and 10 Years Deception Ban UK

The Immigration Rules define fraud and forgery as a form of deception. If a person submits a document or information with an application which is independently verified as being false (forged or non-genuine), then an application for entry or leave to remain is likely to refuse even if the false document is not relevant to the application or the decision and the applicant does not know that the document is false.

If the decision maker has evidence that an applicant has committed fraud and forgery either as part of his/her current or previous application, then it is imminent to refuse the application unless the deception relates to an application made over 10 years ago.

Deception Ban for frustrating immigration rules

Moreover, at times, the decision maker can also consider the appropriateness of refusing an application under paragraph 320(11) (or V 3.8 for visitors) if an applicant has ‘previously contrived in a significant way to frustrate the intentions of the Immigration Rules.’

Deceitful or dishonest dealings with Her Majesty’s Government (HMG)

If a person attempts to deceive or otherwise be clearly dishonest in his/her dealings with another department of government, he/she falls for refusal under character, conduct and associations grounds.

Examples of deceitful conduct or dishonest dealings

These may include but not limited to:

  • fraudulently claiming or otherwise defrauding the benefits system
  • providing dishonest information in order to acquire goods or services, for example, providing false details in order to obtain a driving licence.
  • false or deliberately misleading information at earlier stages of the immigration application process, for example providing false bio-data, claiming to be a nationality they are not, or concealing conviction data.

Genuine mistake and claims

Accordingly, such an application is usually assessed to the extent to which false information was provided and what, if anything, was intended or actually gained as a result. For example, an application is not usually refused for making a genuine mistake on an application form or claiming something to which they reasonably believed or were advised they were entitled.

Failing to declare convictions

There is no specific provision to refuse for failing to declare criminal convictions. However, you must consider if a failure to do so:

  • amounts to deception because false representations are being made
  • false documents or information are submitted
  • material facts are not disclosed

The following paragraphs provide a discretionary power to refuse in circumstances relating to deceitful or dishonest dealings with Her Majesty’s Government (HMG).

Deceitful or dishonest dealings with Her Majesty’s Government (HMG)
Applicant applying for General ground for refusal Appendix FM Visitors (Appendix V)
Entry clearance or leave to enter 320 (7A), 321A(2) S-EC.2.2 V 3.6, V9.4
Leave to remain 322(1A), 322(2), 322(2A) S-LTR.2.2 V 3.6, V3.9(d)
Indefinite leave (settlement) 322(1A), 322(2), 322(2A) S-ILR.2.2 V 3.6, V3.9(d)

Failure to declare a criminal conviction: Deception Ban UK

If an applicant fails to declare a criminal conviction, especially when an application form explicitly asked to do, usually leads to a refusal on character and conduct grounds. However, if an applicant makes a genuine error then this may not lead to a refusal. For instance, an applicant may not have been aware that he/she needs to declare a fine for a motoring conviction. However, this is different to a person who fails to declare a conviction which resulted in a period of imprisonment. Therefore, each case is considered on its own merits.

An applicant needs to declare a criminal conviction

From 1 October 2012, the effect of section 56A of the UK Borders Act 2007 is that a person must declare all their criminal convictions in their dealings with the Home Office, regardless of whether or not they are spent. Accordingly, for applications made on or after 13 December 2012, it is not reasonable for an applicant to think their conviction is ‘spent’ within the meaning of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974.

Deception Ban UK: Immigration Rules for Entry Clearance

Accordingly, an entry clearance applicant refuses on the basis of a false representation, fraud and forgery made in a current application under paragraph 320 (7A) of the Immigration Rule. Moreover, if there is evidence that the applicant has contrived in a significant way to frustrate the intentions of the rules then paragraph 320(11) applies. However, when a refusal is on the basis of false representations, fraud and forgery in a previous application the paragraph 320(7B) of the Immigration Rule applies. An entry clearance application refuses on the basis of a forged or counterfeit passport being submitted under paragraphs 320(3) and 320(19). Apparently, an application with other deceptive documents refuses under paragraph 320(19) of the Immigration Rules.

Immigration Rules for Leave to Remain

A leave to remain refuses on the basis of a false representation, fraud and forgery in the current application under paragraph 322(1A) of the Immigration Rules. However, an application refuses on the basis of a previous false representation, fraud and forgery under paragraph 322(2). Moreover, if an applicant has used false representations, fraud and forgery in a current or previous application to get a document from the Secretary of State to show he/she has a right to reside in the UK then the application refuses under paragraph 322(2A) of the Immigration Rules.

Deception Ban UK: Immigration Rules for Visitor Visa

Accordingly, a visitor visa application refuses on the basis of a false representation, fraud and forgery made in a current application under paragraph V 3.6 of Appendix V. However, when a refusal is on the basis of false representations, fraud and forgery in a previous application then paragraphs V 3.7 and V 3.9(d) of Appendix V apply. An entry clearance application refuses on the basis of a forged or counterfeit passport being submitted under paragraphs V 3.12(a) and V 3.3 of Appendix V. Apparently, an application with other deceptive documents refuses under paragraph V 3.3 of Appendix V.

Deception Ban UK and the Standard of Prove

Usually, the legal standard of proof is ‘balance of probabilities’, which means it is more likely than not that the applicant has made false representations or given forged documents. However, it is not applicable in case of deception ban UK under paragraphs 320(7A), 322(2) and V3.6. Therefore, to refuse an application under paragraphs 320(7A), 322(2) and V3.6 the decision maker needs to have positive evidence to prove that the applicant has either lied or submitted a false document. Accordingly, the availability of positive evidence is a prerequisite for the applicability of paragraphs 320(7A), 322(2) and V3.6 of the Immigration Rules.

Proving deception ban UK requires a Positive Evidence

Therefore, it is certainly not appropriate to refuse under paragraphs 320(7A), 322(2) and V3.6 of the Immigration Rules simply because the ECO is not satisfied that the applicant is telling the truth. And also because of silly mistakes in the application- for instance, when an applicant has given an incorrect postcode or misspelt a name on the application form.

Accordingly, the needs to be satisfied that deception has been used and/or the applicant intended to deceive. This will mainly relate to how the applicant has completed the questions about previous visa refusals or the grant or refusal of leave to remain (LTR) on the application form (VAF).

Proving the relevance of the withheld information

An application is refused under paragraph 320(7A) when an applicant does not disclose a fact that is material (relevant) to the decision to grant entry clearance. To do so, it must be able to prove that the information the applicant withheld is relevant to the decision.

The responsibility of informing the applicant

An application cannot be refused on these grounds if it has not been told to the applicant the kind of information which is relevant to their application. The applicant does not have to give information unless it is being told to an applicant: what kind of information is material to his/her application.

Document Examination and Verification Reports

When an application is refused under paragraph 320(7A) or 320(7B), either a document examination report (DER) or a document verification report (DVR) needs to be filled. This is because it is to ensure that there is a clear audit trail which shows how the decision has been reached.

In some cases when an application is refused on these grounds, deception might also be known from another source, for example, from a report or through an interview. In such cases, DER or DVR still needs to be filled, even if that means simply referring to a question and answer interview or another report. It is not required to confirm that a document is false if a DVR has been filled completely.

If an applicant, third party or appeal case asks for a copy of the DER or DVR, it must be depersonalized.

Document Examination Report (DER)

It is the responsibility of the decision maker to check the document before terming it false and imposing deception ban. Therefore, the decision maker needs to fill in a document examination report (DER). Accordingly, the findings of DER must justify the decision that the document is false, which must include photographic evidence for present and future reference and use.

Document Verification Report (DVR)

Moreover, as a result of the checks, the decision maker has evidence that the document is false. Accordingly, needs to fill in a document verification report (DVR)For instance, a DVR may state that the document is identical to another document on which there is current and reliable evidence that it is false – for example, the body which issued the document has either given information on security features or already told that an identical document is false. Likewise, if an applicant has used false admission from then this must be either in writing or recorded in the question and answer notes.

Automatic refusal after deception ban UK

Once a decision-maker imposes a deception ban under paragraph 320(7A) or V 3.6 then any future application by the applicant is automatically refused for 10 years. Accordingly, the refusal letter states the 10 year period. For instance, if the decision was made on March 1, 2019, then the refusal letter will state that any future application on or before March 1, 2029, will be automatically refused.

Can I apply again after deception ban UK?

Yes, quite certainly an applicant can apply again after getting a refusal under paragraph 320(7A). However, the likely outcome for entry clearance application will be a refusal under paragraph 320(7B) on the basis of false representations, fraud and forgery in a previous application. Moreover, a visitor visa application will be refused is on the basis of false representations, fraud and forgery in a previous application under paragraphs V 3.7 and V 3.9(d) of Appendix V.

Therefore, an applicant has only two options. The first is to challenge the decision for removing 10 years ban through appeal or judicial review. If not then wait for 10-years before applying for a UK visa application again.

Examples of Deception Ban UK

A deception ban is applicable to all types of entry clearance, leave to remain and visitor visa application. Therefore, a deception ban in case of Tier 2 or Tier 5 visa application could be false information to get a Tier 2 or 5 certificate of sponsorship or providing fake bank statements.

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More on General Grounds for Refusal: Re-Entry Ban UK, Criminal Record Certificate, UK Visa Purpose not covered under immigration rules and General Grounds for Refusal under Immigration Rules & Appendix V

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