What is the first commandment of UK Immigration Law? Never become an over-stayer. Is that easier said than done? After years of practicing immigration law, we have come to realize and accept that people actually do 'overstay' for reasons beyond their control. However valid these reasons are, the first commandment remains set in stone, but there are tactical options available.
Overstaying means to remain in the UK beyond the validity period of your visa. In general, overstayers have a tendency to face a rejection of their subsequent visa application as overstaying constitute a general ground of refusal.
Amongst the multitude disjointed reasons for overstaying, there are several genuine causes of overstaying. A typical example may be a situation where an application was submitted in time but as a result of technical glitches, it was sent back as invalid as a result of the Home Office been unable to process the application fee or if a box had not been included in a mandatory box. This situation will most likely render the applicant an overstayer, having no valid leave.
In these types of scenarios, what we would normally do is to submit an application regardless, but in addition request the Home Office to exercise discretion and issue a further grant of leave.
A law that doesn't accurately and fairly cater for reality is definitely flawed. It is on this premise that the Home Office in 2012 amended the immigration rules to include a provision that allowed applicants not to fall under mandatory refusals, provided they applied within 28 days after their visa expiry date.
This provision created a much needed buffer for applicants who for various reasons are not able to submit their application in time without putting their immigration status in jeopardy.
The amendment also ensured that if an application that was submitted within the 28 days grace period was successful, the applicant would still be regarded as one who has no adverse immigration history with regards to future applications.
A major requirement for applying for permanent residence or indefinite leave to remain is that the applicant must be able to show that he or she has been continuously and legally residing in the UK for a given period of time (05 years in most cases, 10 years on others). Prior to the amendments in 2012, in-country applications after the date of the visa expiration would automatically leave a gap, thereby breaking legal and continuous residence leaving then ineligible to apply for indefinite leave to remain. With the introduction of the 28-day grace period and knocking off of any overstayed period, it is indeed a welcome development.
Please note that that 28-day grace period is not the ultimate remedy in all cases. Activating the 28 days grace period denies the applicant from the benefits of 'Section 3C Leave'.
Section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 confirms that where an application for further leave to remain is made in time, the person's leave will be deemed as continuing until the Home Office makes a decision on the application or all avenues of appeal have been exhausted. A practical example would be:- A Tier 2 application was submitted by a holder of a Tier 4 general before the date of the visa expiration, the terms of the Tier 4 visa will continue until a decision is made on the Tier 2 visa.
Summarily, an application submitted after the visa expiration date but within the 28 day grace period will not fall under general grounds of refusal; however they will not enjoy the benefits of Section 3C leave. This means that they will not have a right to work amongst other things until a decision is made on their application.
Where an application is returned as invalid, the applicant is able to re-submit within the 28-day grace period without becoming an overstayer. However, if the arrival of rejection notice leaves to time gap and uses up the entire 28-days grace period, the applicant is then deemed to be an overstayer.
There are several reasons for returning an application as invalid, some of which include applying with no passports, inability for UKBA to take the application payment, etc.
476 ReviewsREAD ALL REVIEWS
Tier 1 Investor Visa - Business Immigration
Investing over 2 million pounds is defintely not a routine decision. We had to make sure that the Tier 1 investor immigration lawyers that we'd be picking has to be one of the best within the Tier 1 investor category. We contacted Reiss Edwards and they were able to get us not only the Tier 1 investor visa but also suggested profitable investment portfolios in addition to what we already had in mind.
Indefinite Leave to remain - UK Settlement and
I am glad that i instructed Reiss Edwards on my visa matter. It started with a 20 minutes free immigration advice. I met with Amar to discuss my ILR refusal. He gave me a great deal of quality advice and decided to take on my messy case. I had doubts on the merits of my case by he was relatively convinced he could win it. That made me quite secure. To be honest, things did not start as quick as I would have wanted, but they kept on communicating the process and state of things to me.A big thank you to Verusha and Foram. They were also very helpful. Brilliant and informative. Their fee was fair and reasonable, especially if you compare them to other law firms and immigration law firms in London; some of whom even told me that i would not be able to get an indefinte leave to remain in this country. The process was long but was worth it. In the end, a big thank you to Reiss Edwards.
Citizenship Application - UK Naturalisation
TI have just had British Citizenship application approved. Prior to making the application, i was not sure which law firm i should hire to facilitate the paperwork. After a few hours of research, i decided to go with Reiss Edwards and i must confess that i wasnt disappointed. The immigration lawyers at Reiss Edwards handled my case well and they really knew what they were doing. They were fully aware of what documents I needed and it was easy for them to tell if my case was going to be easy or not. At the end of the day, I have not received my British citizenship within 3 months. If anyone is looking for a good immigration lawyer to handle thier case, contact Reiss Edwards.
Spouse Visa - Appeals and visa refusals
My wife's spouse visa extension application was refused by the Home Office and they gave her 14 days to leave the country. We contacted Reiss Edwards and they said "OK don't worry we will sort this out". They put together the list of documents for me to obtain and they prepared a bundle which was as thick as the printer it came out from.We followed everything they asked us to do and in the end we won our appeal and got our spouse visa. We can't recommend them enough and we have promised ourselves never to make any more UK visa applications without them.
Immigration Visa - Citizen of United Kingdom
The team of lawyers at Reiss Edwards are very professional and friendly people. Their experience in and around UK immigration law is quite extensive; be sure that you application is in safe and competent hands. My immigration matter was an indefinite leave to remain application based on Tier 1 on a self-employment basis. The immigration lawyers at Reiss Edwards made sure that the application was perfect and ready to be accepted. I got a positive decision and I recommend them highly for anyone who needs a UK immigration help.
UK Settlement Visa
I contacted Reiss Edwards to help me with my wife�s UK settlement visa. They acted with utmost professionalism throughout the entire application. I spoke with Joe Dinh, he is an immigration solicitor and he is one of the best solicitors out there. He ensured that there was little to no room for error. At some point I thought he was over cautious. He remained calmed and continued to assure us on our immigration matter. Most people in his position would have panicked but he was calmed and continued to assure us. We received out positive outcome very quickly.
Cheap Immigration Lawyers in London
I have been using Reiss Edwards for three years now for my family's immigration application. Both for my initial application and extension. They are really affordable. The team of solicitors at this firm are probably one of the most efficient and economical in terms of cost. They offered free advice over the phone and spent good time with us before inviting us for consultation.
Top Notch Immigration Service
Reiss Edwards is a top notch immigration service company. The way they handled our documentation and also the list of documents they sent was efficient and top quality. They helped us professionally throughout the process. We are very happy with the immigration advice we received from the team. We highly recommend them.
Best Immigration Solicitors
I used Reiss Edwards� immigration lawyers to assist with my immigration matter and that of my family. It was an EX1 application. They dealt with the matter properly and even when complications were coming up from the Home Office, they helped resolve the issue properly. They are very professional and are very popular in London. I am happy to have worked with them.
Indefinte Leave to remain - Individual Immigration - UK Settlement
It's a shame that you dont have an 'Excellent' star rating on here, as my experience with Reiss Edwards is nothing short of an excellent rating. They handled my application for an Indefinite Leave to remain in April 2014 and did my husband's one very recently including my daughter. Every time i have approached them, they have continued to treat me with courtesy, respect and patience. Amar was indeed a very thorough and professional gentleman. He is very knowledgeable, corporative and engaging. He responded to my emails, calls and enquiries promptly. He was always reassuring. I could not have asked for a better Immigration service. I would recommend them over and over again for anyone looking for an immigration advice. They gave me a free immigration advice when i called them, and the quality of the advice was something other charge thousands for. If you need a particular, name, Amar would be it. He exemplifies, for me, the true, professional gentleman. He is a valuable asset to Reiss Edwards.
Tier 2 Visa application - UK Work Visas
This is the only firm that i spoke with that didn't ask for money before listening to me, will be using them again.
I used Reiss Edwards for my Tier 2 visa application and it was successful. The team was ever present and happy to answer my question. The caseworker that dealing with my case went on holiday yet by case did not suffer one bit. Another lawyer stepped and took over the case without any hassle.
Tier 1 Investor Visa - Business Immigration
My Tier 1 Investor Visa was dealt with quickly and without issue. Would recommend Reiss Edwards as an Immigration law firm in London. Thank you to the team.