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Gorkhali wrote: ↑Thu Jan 26, 2017 3:15 pmDear Reader,
I have been silent reader of this board like you(I guess). Not finding many success stories of Judicial reviews frustrated me a lot and that's why I decided to post here as soon as I would know what's going to happen to my case. I do have a story to share.
In short, I applied for ILR (T1-General route) early 2016 in person. After 8.5 hours of long wait, my case worker handed me the refusal letter. The letter said I tried to lie either HMRC or UKVI by submitted different figures 5 years ago. And also asked me to leave the UK immediately. There were no questions asked before making the decision.
Since my accountant looked after all my accounts, I went back to him and asked him to check what had gone wrong. My accountant looked into my account and told me there was a typo and he was issuing me a letter verifying that. He also sent a copy of letter to HMRC for correction.
The only option I was given at that stage was Admin Review (massive waste of time BTW!). As you must be familiar with UKVI terms- none of them are clear. I double checked with UKVI staff via phone and email if I could put evidence with the Admin Review. I got positive reply saying as long as it is related to original reason for refusal, it will be fine. Everything should workout then, right? Wrong!
My Admin review was refused and I was given 6 days to leave the country. The reason given was, new evidence was not considered at this stage. Every door seemed closed for me at this point and I started contacting as many lawyers as possible. Most of them wanted money even to answer simple yes/no question. But there were few very helpful one.. So guys, don't just give up.. Keep looking you might get lucky too! With much consultation, I was advised to make new application as I was allowed to do so -being within 28 days after the leave expired.
I made a fresh application with all the evidences and clarification I could possibly collect within the time-frame that was available. I was told I would not be allowed to me same day application(Still don't know if this is true!), so I went for the postal application. Having lost the right to work, the real struggle started from here.
Four months later, all my accounts at HMRC were updated and I had already done Biometrics and all that crap. I received couple of text/calls and a post from UKVI's official torture company. They threatened to deport me and close my bank accounts. Oh ya, and they wanted to take my license away too. I simple ignored them as I knew my application was still being processed. If you are going though this stage, be prepared for that.
One random day I googled "faster decision.." and boom! to my surprise UKVI has released new money sucking program. Pay 500 pounds and get decision within a week. As living without a job was already killing me, I decided to the bite the bullet. Along with the money, they also want you to write an email explaining why they should take more money from you. Although not exactly within a week, I got my decision on 10th day. And guess what? They refused again!!!!!
The reason given this time was so bad that everyone who read the letter couldn't believe it. They said an accountant cannot make a mistake. And yet, they themselves made mistake on the same decision letter. They also claimed that I corrected only because my first application was refused.
You can only wake someone up who is sleeping, if someone is pretending to sleep, you simply can't. At this point I knew Judicial Review was the only hope. However, since I was given an opportunity to submit Admin review for the decision, I did it just to exhaust all the options. I had zero hope that Admin Review would make any difference.. And My guess was right. They refused my admin review again saying my explanation is not adequate.
Along with my solicitor, I started the JR process by sending them a PAP- a formal legal notice giving them final opportunity before you enter the legal battle. For which, they replied almost immediately accepting the challenge. After that we submitted a request for permission for Judicial Review to the court. UKVI also wrote to the court asking not to give me the permission. Around 3 months later, court decided on my favour and provided me with two hearing dates. I didn't hear anything from UKVI until the very last moment before the hearing. At this point they must have figured that I am not giving up and they have no evidence to anything they have been accusing me of. They called my solicitor and asked us to pull the case back. I was told UKVI asked for 3 months to give me a renewed decision.
Today, almost 2 months later, I received the BRP confirming my ILR approval. I still haven't received my passport back. I still don't know how much legal cost they are covering. I have been told it would be around 50-60%. Only time will tell.
My final words, if you know you are innocent like myself, don't give up the fight. You know it's not the jokers at UKVI who is doing this. Their big mummy, Mrs. T. May wants to get the immigration number down any how. And we are simply the easy targets as they don't really have time or resource to track the illegal. At times you might feel like there is no hope or there are no options. Just keep believing in yourself and keep looking, no one is greater than law in this society. It's slow, frustrating and nerve killing process but at the end you will get there. If you haven't done anything wrong, there is no reason to fear or give up your fight.
Wish you all the best!
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