This guidance explains: what to do after getting UK visa refusal letter: reapply or appeal? Indeed, after getting a UK visa refusal letter, applicants are not very sure whether to reapply or appeal and also doubtful about the chances of getting a visa after refusal. In fact, for genuine applicants there are always good chances of getting a UK visa after refusal. However, to get a UK visa after refusal one needs to follow the proper procedure to reapply or appeal against the decision.
UK Visa Refusal Appeal or Reapply: What to do?
Indeed, after getting a UK visa refusal letter, an applicant can:
- Reapply after refusal of an entry clearance application
- opt for reconsideration, which has a limited scope and is only possible for certain types of leave to remain applications
- lodge an appeal if there is a right of appeal. For instance, an applicant can file an immigration appeal against a spouse visa refusal on human rights grounds. However, the immigration appeal time limit is 10, 5 and 28 days for in-country, detention and entry clearance appeals
- file an Administrative Review (AR), which is mostly available after refusal of point-based (PBS), leave to remain and ILR application with no right of appeal. Therefore, it is not available to certain types of applicants such as visitors, spouse, family settlement etc. Moreover, an applicant needs to file an Administrative Review within 28 or 14 days after the UK visa refusal letter
- opt for Judicial Review (JR) if there is no right of appeal and there are errors in the decision. Moreover, if an applicant has a right of an AR then can only file a judicial review after AR. However, an applicant should file a judicial review promptly and in any event, within 3 months of the UK visa refusal letter
When to appeal or reapply after UK visa refusal?
In fact, there is no straight-forward answer for: when to appeal or reapply after UK visa refusal. For instance, after getting a visitor visa refusal, a proper reapplication may still be effective. However, in case of a 10-year reentry or deception ban, there are no realistic chances of getting a visa after a reapplication. And a legal challenge is inevitable. Moreover, usually a reapplication after refusal of leave to remain or ILR application may not be possible. Therefore, depending on the type of the application and nature of the refusal one can reapply, file a reconsideration request, appeal, administrative review (AR) or judicial review (JR).
What to do after UK visitor visa refusal?
In fact, if UK visit visa is refused then one can reapply or file a judicial review as there is no right of appeal or administrative review. However, in case of a 10-year ban, one has no other choice but to file a judicial review after refusal. Indeed, there are always good chances of getting a UK visit visa after refusal for genuine visitors. Moreover, the best practice to reapply for UK visit visa after refusal is to read the rejection letter and understand the implications of the refusal reasons. And accordingly submit a well-documented reapplication to clearly establishes an applicant’s:
- genuine intentions of visiting
- ability to bear the trip cost without recourse to public funds
- intentions to leave the UK after completing the proposed journey i.e. strong ties to the home country
What are the Chances of Getting a UK Visa after Refusal?
Perhaps, for genuine applicants, there are always considerable chances of getting a UK visa after refusal. For instance, the appeal success rate is approximately more than 50%. Moreover, a considerable number of applicants get a favourable decision by filing an AR or JR. Therefore, there are also good chances of getting a UK visa after a reapplication, especially if a decision-maker has made glaring mistake in refusal letter. Accordingly, overlooked the obvious and critical facts and supporting documents of the case!
Chances of success in the first instance
Perhaps, the possibility of success in the very first instance greatly depends on the personal circumstances of the applicant. And also on the quality of the application. However, the success rate by country and type of application is also a good proxy to determine the chances of getting a visa. For instance, the success rate for visitor and spouse visa is 89.3% and 78.53%, respectively. Therefore, there are more chances of getting a UK visitor visa then the spouse visa. However, the actual chances of getting UK visa in the first instance may be less as success rate includes the grants after refusal.
Priority Service and the Chances of Getting UK Visa after Refusal
The purpose of the priority service is to expedite the processing time and not to influence the decision. Moreover, it is the priority service is only for a straightforward and not complex applications. In fact, a application may become complex due to past refusals, adverse immigration history etc. Therefore, it is not a good idea to use the priority service after a refusal. However, if an applicant intends to use the priority or super priority service then the applicant can do so. Perhaps, at his/her own risk and cost. Please note, UKVI/Home Office is not even liable to expedite the processing of a complex application.
Chances of success vary from country to country
Furthermore, the chances of getting an entry clearance for the first time applicants may vary from country to country. For instance, the success rate from India and Pakistan is around 90% and 70%, respectively. Therefore, there are more chances of success in the first instance from India than from Pakistan.
Refusal Stamp and the Chances of Getting UK Visa after Refusal
Perhaps, most of the applicants experience at-least 1-2 rejection decisions during their lifetime. Apparently, it is quite normal to have refusal stamp on the passport. In fact, in terms with the Immigration Rules, the applications are always considered as mutually exclusive i.e. the act of past grants (rejections) do not necessitate a favourable (adverse) decision!
The Number of Successful Appeals and Reapplications
Perhaps, each year nearly 25K and 2-3K applicants get a visa after a successful immigration appeal and judicial review decision. Additionally, the number of successful reapplications is quite substantial. Perhaps, especially if an applicant is reapplying after a UK visitor visa refusal because most of the applicants are able to learn from their mistakes and effectively are able to address the concerns raised in the rejection letter. However, the statistics relating for reapplications are not available.
How to Reapply after UK Visa Refusal?
Perhaps, the easiest option is to submit a reapplication i.e. reapplying after UK visa refusal with the correct address of the rejection grounds, along with new evidence and the application fee. Perhaps, what is required is to understand the requirements for the particular type of application. And also to submit a well-prepared application that has the potential of satisfying the ECO. Accordingly, one can make a successful reapplication after UK visa refusal, especially a visitor visa, if an applicant:
- reads the refusal letter carefully
- studies the rejection reasons stated in the refusal letter in the light of the immigration rules, and
- accordingly, prepares an application, which clarifies the uk visa refusal reasons
The Reapplication Time after UK Visit Visa Refusal
Perhaps, most of the applicants don’t know when to reapply as they don’t have a fair idea about the reapplication time for UK visit visa after refusal. Apparently, there is no timeframe for reapplying UK visa after refusal. Accordingly, one does not need to wait for any specific duration of time, such as six months, before reapplying for a UK visit visa after refusal. In fact, one can reapply for UK visa after refusal as soon as possible, especially if the grounds of rejection are not tenable.
Is it necessary to wait for 6-months before reapplying?
No, certainly not. Perhaps, commonly and rather erroneously most of the applicants think that one needs to wait for a duration of six (6) months before reapplying, especially in case of applying for a UK visit visa after refusal. In fact, the only plausible reasoning behind this time duration is the change of circumstances of an applicant. However, six months is not such a long duration that may effectively affect the circumstances of an applicant.
How many times one can reapply after refusal?
In fact, there is no legal and administrative limits on the UK visa reapplications after a refusal under the immigration rules. Therefore, an applicant can reapply for a UK visitor visa as many times as he/she may like. Perhaps, there is nothing wrong in submitting a reapplication after rejection. Moreover, this is also true for other types of applications such as spouse settlement, Tier 1 entrepreneur, Tier 2 work visa etc. However, it is not advisable to submit an ill-advised application again and again.
anyone refused a visit visa may reapply as many times as they like
Perhaps, on some websites, it is erroneously mentioned that multiple refusals may lead to blacklisting and a permanent ban. Evidently, it is an absolutely false notion. In fact, there is no such thing as a blacklist or permanent ban under the Immigration Rules. Quite clearly, an applicant can only get a deception and re-entry ban up-to 10 years under General Grounds of Refusal. And there is no provision in the general grounds to blacklist an applicant because of submitting a UK visa reapplication after refusal on several occasions! Moreover, the refusal and ban under general grounds are mainly due to an applicant’s adverse behaviour and background. For instance, such as false documents, criminal conviction, character, conduct or associations.
Reapplying after UK Visa Refusal due to Insufficient Evidence
In fact, if an application gets rejected because of insufficient evidence then it is quite easy to correct the mistake and reapply after refusal. For instance, if an applicant inadvertently failed to submit bank statements, a medical or English Test result or similar evidence then an applicant may include all the absent evidence with the new application. Moreover, in the reapplication, an applicant may also provide a plausible explanation for not including the evidence in the previous application.
Reapplying after UK Visa Refusal due to the Absence of Proof
Similarly, where an application was refused because of an alleged absence of proof or insufficient evidence, reapplying is quite a strong option.
At times, due to workload or oversight of the relevant evidence, an ECO might inadvertently ignore evidence submitted with the application. Perhaps, ECOs assesses quite a few applications every day and work under tight deadlines. Consequently, it is quite normal to either overlook a few documents, especially in case of an ill-presented application. Apparently, it becomes hard for an ECO to understand the application. Perhaps, then there is no other option but to make a refusal decision. If this happens, then an applicant may have a couple of options:
- if the administrative arrangements are available, then the applicant may approach the Entry Clearance Manager and request a reconsideration
- submit a properly prepared reapplication
Moreover, most of the refusal decisions are due to ill-prepared applications. Therefore, it is important to furnish a clear and well-documented application. If a caseworker doesn’t understand the application then it is not possible to grant a visa.
When reapplying after rejection will not work?
Nevertheless, some circumstances require a legal challenge such as:
- The verification process not able to verify the evidence
- ECO doubts the genuine intentions of the applicant to visit the United Kingdom
- Misunderstanding or mistake about an exclusion order
- A Rejection of a Leave to Remain or ILR
- A Refusal on General Grounds such as Reentry or Deception Ban
Reconsideration after Rejection of Leave to Remain Application
Perhaps, at times, an applicant may not need to go for a reapplication after rejection of a leave to remain application. However, this may be possible if reconsideration is available. In fact, there is no real time frame for reconsideration. Since the Home Office is not legally bound to reconsider a decision, therefore, it may only prove to be a waste time. Therefore, a reconsideration review has limited usability. However, at times it may prove effective for the following types of decisions:
- further, limited or indefinite leave to remain such as spouse ILR
- transfer of conditions (TOC)
- no time limit (NTL)
- there is no right of appeal or AR against the decision
- the reconsideration request relates to a granted application with no AR. And the applicant believes the type of leave granted or the expiry date of the leave is incorrect
- the reconsideration request relates to a refused application and the applicant is:
- providing new evidence to prove the date of application
- providing new evidence that documents submitted with the application are genuine
- identifying relevant material which was not available to the caseworker but was received by the Home Office before the decision date
- the reconsideration is a legacy request submitted before 13 November 2012. And there are still reasons to reconsider the decision
Reconsideration can be for a certain aspect of the approval
Although, a reconsideration is usually about a overturning rejection decision; however, it may also be for certain aspect of approval. For instance, the duration of the leave to remain.
You can make a reconsideration request if you believe immigration rules or policies weren’t followed correctly when the decision was made.
Filing an Administrative Review after UK Visa Refusal
An applicant can use administrative review if the refusal decision relates to:
- Tier 1 Exceptional talent, Tier 1 General, Entrepreneur,Investor, Graduate entrepreneur, Dependent partners and children
- PBS Tier 2 General, Intra-Company Transfer, Ministers of Religion, Sportsperson, Dependent partners and children
- Tier 4 adult and child students, dependent partners and children
- Tier 5 Youth Mobility Scheme, Temporary Worker, Dependent partners and children
- any in-country application (except for visitor, protection or human rights claim applications), where the decision was made on or after 6 April
An applicant can use administrative review to challenge cancellation of leave to enter or remain at the border due to change of circumstances, false representations and failure to disclose material facts. And also decisions to cancel leave to enter or remain under paragraphs V9.2 or V9.4 of Appendix V of the Immigration Rules.
You’ll be told in your application refusal letter if you can ask for the decision on your visa application to be reviewed. This is known as an ‘administrative review’.
UK Visa Refusal Decisions not eligible for Administrative Review
However, an applicants cannot use administrative review if the rejection decision relates:
When a Legal Challenge is inevitable after UK visa refusal?
Perhaps, if a reapplication, reconsideration or administrative review has not worked then it may worth to take legal action. Apparently, an immigration appeal or a judicial review constitutes a legal challenge against a rejection decision. Please note: if either no right or limited right of appeal then an applicant can file a judicial review. Therefore, some circumstances require a legal challenge such as:
- the verification process not able to verify the evidence
- ECO doubts the genuine intentions of the applicant to visit the United Kingdom
- Misunderstanding or mistake about an exclusion order
You can only appeal to the tribunal if you have the legal right to appeal – you’ll usually be told if you do in your decision letter.
Verification process fails to verify the evidence
If fact, where the evidence relied on was declined as being from an in complete or unverifiable source then there is a limited point of re-submitting the same set of documents for the second time, especially, when an applicant can do nothing more. Perhaps, this is quite true in case of getting more than 2-3 refusal decisions. Therefore, in such circumstances, an applicant needs to challenge the decision by way of an appeal or judicial review.
Doubtful Intentions: Appeal or Reapply after UK Visa Refusal
Perhaps, when the ECO in the refusal letter alleges that an applicant is not a genuine visitor with no intention to return to the home country and applicant has no additional documents prove his/her case then an applicant may need to take legal action or at least a professional advice.
In fact, one needs to either appeal or judicial review if there is a previous exclusion order to exclude the applicant from the United Kingdom for a particular period of time. For instance for the use of deception. Perhaps, if there was an obvious misunderstanding or mistake on part of the ECO then it might be plausible to remedy this through a reconsideration request or afresh application. However, in most of the cases, a legal challenge is quite inevitable in such circumstances.
Judicial review is a type of court proceeding in which a judge reviews the lawfulness of a decision or action made by a public body.
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Why do applicants receive a Refusal Letter?
Perhaps applicants don’t feel good after receiving a UK visa refusal letter. However, it is a legal requirement to serve a written notice after an appealable or non-appealable UK visa refusal decision. And also for a void or invalid entry clearance, leave to enter or remain and administrative review application. Accordingly, in case of rejection, an applicant receives a written letter stating the UK visa refusal reasons.
In fact, the Immigration (Notices) Regulations 2003, require the Home Office to also serve a notice of decision whenever an appealable decision is made. Accordingly, in such instances, the UK visa refusal letter states that the decision is appealable. Moreover, the decision-maker also needs to enclose a notice of appeal form with the UK visa refusal letter. Therefore, in case of an appealable decision, an applicant has an option of whether to reapply or appeal against a UK visa refusal. Perhaps, the appealable applications mainly relate to spouse and family settlements, human rights etc.
For instance, in 2019, 7,067 spouse visa applications rejected. However, there could be a number of different reasons for refusals. Therefore, depending on the nature of the rejection an applicant can reapply or appeal against the UK spouse visa refusal. Perhaps, in most of the situations, it is better to exercise the right of appeal instead of reapplying after rejection.
(2)The decision-maker must give written notice to a person of the relevant grant of leave to enter or remain if, as a result of that grant, a right of appeal arises under section 83(2) of the 2002 Act.
Moreover, a notice of non-appealable immigration decision for leave to remain (or vary leave to remain) is served under the Immigration (Leave to Enter and Remain) Order 2000. Furthermore, in terms of paragraph SN1.2 of Appendix SN to the Immigration Rules, notices relating to void, invalid and administrative reviews are served. Therefore, in case of a non-appealable decision, an applicant has an option of whether to reapply or file a reconsideration, administrative or judicial review. Perhaps, the non-appealable applications mainly relate to a visitor, PBS etc.
….an immigration officer shall as soon as practicable give to him a notice in writing stating that he has been refused leave to enter the United Kingdom and stating the reasons for the refusal.
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