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Appealing a Refusal to Grant a Student Visa

By: Louise Smith, barrister - Updated: 20 Oct 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Appealing A Refusal To Grant A Student Visa

Different rules apply to student visa applicants depending on the type and duration of their course of study. Students who intend to study on a course that will last less than six months may apply under the visitor visa system completing the part of the application that applies to students. Students who apply under the visitor visa system may subsequently apply to extend their stay in the UK if they wish to continue their studies.

In recent years the requirements for a successful student visa application have become much stricter due to concerns that many foreign nationals applying for student visas were either not genuine students or were due to study courses of limited value.

If an application for a full student visa is refused, the UK Border Agency will write to the applicant setting out in full:

  • the refusal to grant a student visa;
  • the reasons for the refusal to grant a student visa; and,
  • whether or not the applicant has the right to appeal against the decision.
If the unsuccessful applicant for a UK student visa does have a right of appeal, the written notice will also inform them how to appeal the decision.

Reasons Why an Application for a Student Visa May be Refused

There are many reasons why an application for a UK student visa could be refused. These could include some or all of the following:
  • The proposed course of study is not provided by a recognised educational or training organisation as listed on the UK's Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills Register of Education and Training Providers.
  • The applicant has failed to satisfy the UK Border Agency that they will be able to pay for their course and support themselves financially whilst they are in the UK.
  • The UK Border Agency officials who considered the application do not believe that the applicant’s real reason for coming to the UK is to study.

Refusal of an Application to Extend Stay in the UK

If a foreign national is in the UK on a student visitor visa they are only permitted to stay in the UK for up to six months. Student visitors can apply to extend their stay beyond the six month period. An application to extend the stay could be refused because:
  • The six month period had already expired when the student made the application to extend their stay;
  • Immigration officials are not satisfied that the applicant has been attending the course that they say they are in the UK to study.
  • Immigration officials are not satisfied that the applicant has been making sufficient progress on their course – for example by passing the necessary exams.
  • The applicant has not provided sufficient proof that they can continue to support themselves financially if they are allowed to remain in the UK.

Applications to the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal

Appeals against immigration decisions made by UK Border Agency officials are made to the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal. The Tribunal will provide a written explanation of their decision, known as a determination. In some cases an unsuccessful appellant may be able to request a redetermination of the appeal. Appellants may represent themselves at appeals to the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal, and the Home Office, which is ultimately in charge of immigration, will be represented by a lawyer or lawyers.

If an appeal is unsuccessful the only UK legal recourse open to the unsuccessful applicant is likely to be by seeking a judicial review. This is a complicated legal process in which it would have to be shown that the public body reaching the decision breached the laws of natural fairness in the way they that they reached their decision.

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Hi My husband is a British Citizen and has been living and working in the UK for two months. We have been married four years and I am pregnant with our second child. Is it possible to come over on a standard visitor visa and give birth in the UK for free or will I have to pay? What will happen afterwards, will my child be British? Will I be allowed to stay in the UK? I am South African. We do not want to be separated through out my whole pregnancy but he needs six months pay slips to apply for a family visa! Please advise.
Gabrielle - 20-Oct-18 @ 1:02 PM
@Gin - You will be able to apply to register your child as a British citizen once you have lived in the UK for at least 5 years and you have applied for settled status
TJ. - 20-Sep-18 @ 12:05 PM
Hi, I’m pregnant and my due date is on March 2019. My husband and I both are EU citizens living in the UK since 2015. May I know if my baby can get a British citizenship? Thanks much for your help. Regards Gin
Gin - 19-Sep-18 @ 2:28 PM
Hello, I would like to seek advice here. I live in UK since 2004 and my daughter was born in 2007.I registered us as residents ( 5 years).We live here 14 years my daughter is 11.I am from EU country and daughter was born in UK. both parents are from EU.We are staying in UK permanently and I am just about to apply for permanent residence card.Do I need to register my daughter as well or she is automatically entitled to apply for British passport without residence card?
Dragon - 28-May-18 @ 7:09 PM
@Lexi - Your girlfriend can apply for a standard visitor visa. She will have to pay an NHS surcharge as part of the application.
TJ. - 20-Mar-18 @ 8:36 PM
Hi, I am a British Citizen, My Girlfriend is Ukrainian Citizen,we have been a couple for four years. we are having a baby, I would like my girlfriend to have our baby in the Uk. does anybody know what is the process, and where and If I can get Medical Insurance to cover this eventuality. advice would be much appreciated. Kind Regards.
Lexi - 20-Mar-18 @ 2:57 PM
Hi I'm seeking advice, I am UK Citizen.My Girlfriend is Ukrainian Citizen, we are having a baby,I want her to come to the UK to have our baby, does any one know what is the process, where I can get medical Insurance to cover this eventuality and how to go about it. If any one can give advice it would be appreciated Kind Regards
Lexi - 20-Mar-18 @ 2:50 PM
@hubby - extended family includes parents and siblings mainly.
TJ. - 9-Feb-18 @ 7:18 PM
I am married to a kenyan wife and am about to apply for our spouse visa. My wife has a daughter of 3 from a previous relationship and I have 2 children from a previous marriage. For the visa we are requested to give details of all children as well as any court orders for shared care etc. We are providing, passports, birth certificates and everything they have requested. They also ask us to provide details of extended family but they don't explain what details are required. They specify the details required for the children but not for extended family. We are only aplying for a visa for my wife and stepdaughter- not extended family. Do you know what extended family details are required for us to provide? Thanks
hubby - 9-Feb-18 @ 12:11 PM
@Chryssy - If your refusal letter gave you the right to appeal then you have 28 days to do so. If you cannot convince the Home Office that the circumstances around your refusal have changed the appeal will also be refused.
TJ. - 29-Jan-18 @ 4:26 PM
Hello, I applied for tier 4 student visa and did the interview at the submission embassy. Three weeks later, I was called on the phone for another phone interview and panicked because I did not know if it was legitimate or not as I had not heard of a phone interview for a tier 4 visa before. As the interview was impromptu, my answers were not good enough like my first interview. My visa was therefore refused based on the second interview. The reason was that they do not belive I am a genuine student because my answers did not provide enough details and information. I can therefore not attend the university which fees I have paid and can not meet up with the January entry anymore. I would have to wait till September if anything. Do you think a successful appeal is possible in this case?
Cryssy - 28-Jan-18 @ 5:55 PM
@Abbee - your child born in the UK will automatically be a British citizen. If your girlfriend is a resident in the UK she will be entitled to free maternity care under NHS. If her visa expires she will have to leave the UK unless she applies for another visa to remain for example a family visa.
TJ. - 17-Dec-17 @ 11:34 AM
I'm a UK citizen for 43 years. My girlfriend is from Lebanon and is studying in UK on an extended student visa. She is due to give birth to our baby in January. Do I need to pay for her hospital treatment? Can I register my baby as a UK national. Does my girlfriend have to return to Lebanon after her visa finishes or can she stay as she is the mother of the child (who I believe is automatically British)? Please let me know as I'm unsure.
Abbee - 17-Dec-17 @ 6:03 AM
Good morning I was wondering when a person became" illigal" as I have an appeal for my visa and my visa expired on 31 october and the notice of appeal was lodged on 31 march and tribunal direct my file by 13 august . so my question is I became illigal on 13 august where was the decision court or when applied and refused after october?? thanks in advance pd .- bassically i want to know the dates please ana maria
anny - 12-Nov-17 @ 11:16 AM
In 1965 I was born in Canada. The following year my family returned to live in Britain as normal. At 16 I was sent a national insurance no. which allowed me to work for over 30 years. When my son applied for his first passport, we had to go through hoops and eventually one was issued. The problem being that apparently I hadn't been registered by my parents on their return in 1996. It probably would have come to light if I had applied for a ten year passport but instead I only ever had yearly passports for travel in the past. I have been informed by my local mp that I need to complete a naturalisation process which will cost approx 1,300 pounds and there is no discretionary waiver.Incidentally both my parents are British and my grandparents fought in two world wars. I am puzzled as to how I was issued a national insurance number if I wasn't on the system!Please could you offer opinion on the matter? Kind regards Eva
Ebie - 13-Oct-17 @ 10:10 AM
Hello I just had a child for a uk citizen but I'm illegal immigrant. Was brought here when I was very young, so I don't have a passport with me. So the hospital is had my baby said I have to pay and said if I have proved that I'm entitle to free nhs....my partner said since he's lived here all his life and he's a British citizen that I don't have to pay. I called the hospital and told them this. The man I spoke to said he need to contact home office and will get back to me. Please I'm really worried. What will the home office do?
Prettybella - 25-Sep-17 @ 8:41 PM
embassy didnt send my name to university and said me you apply for visa we have sended your name now university said me your name is not present in that list in which embassy sanded us kindly guide me what should i do now. i wasted my many months for waiting this
Abdul Hafeez Shar - 15-Sep-17 @ 7:08 PM
Hi i applied for a tier 4 visa but unfortunately, i got refused because i didn't include the transactions in my bank statement, however i did include a bankstatement with money more than The minimum. But because i didn't get to send my transaction papers they assumed that my parents cannot sustain my schooling and expenses. However, a form was sent together with the letter of refusal so that i can apply for an administrative review. do you think i have a good chance of getting a grant?
Jen - 10-Sep-16 @ 3:15 AM
Concerned - Your Question:
I lived in the UK since 2000 - 2004. My husband at that time was British and I received indefinite stay. We had one daughter at the time. Then our second was born in the UK. she was 7 weeks old when I returned to South Africa and am divorced. Would I be able to return to the UK with my new family to live?

Our Response:
If your ILR has lapsed (you can leave the UK for up to two years) you would have to apply for a new applicable visa again. However, you would not be able to apply on the back of your children being British citizens.
AboutImmigration - 1-Sep-16 @ 10:49 AM
I lived in the UK since 2000 - 2004. My husband at that time was British and I received indefinite stay.We had one daughter at the time.Then our second was born in the UK.she was 7 weeks old when I returned to South Africa and am divorced.Would I be able to return to the UK with my new family to live?
Concerned - 31-Aug-16 @ 2:09 PM
My nephew was born in London in 1980 but at that time his parents were not British. Can he still be entitle to British citizenship?
Phylix - 14-Oct-15 @ 4:28 AM
AboutImmigration@ thanks for the answer, reading the guidance notes it says: c) You must meet the immigration status requirement You must not be in the UK as a visitor, or with leave for 6 months or less (unless you are here as a fiancé or proposed civil partner), or here with temporary admission. So I cant apply to this, thanks anyway x
Fio - 23-Sep-15 @ 1:10 AM
Fio - Your Question:
Hi, my husband and I got married this year on march in my country (south america) (we haven't register our wedding in the uk yet), 4 months ago he came back to England as I'm pregnant and he cant speak spanish and so cant support me in my country and I couldnt carry on working, so he got a job and its going to have six months by the end of november but his salary is only 18,000. I'm now in England with a visitor visa that runs off by the end of november as well and my baby is gonna be 2 months old by then. Can I apply for a visa to remain with my baby here as she is going to be british? there is any chance for us to stay together here or do I have to go back to my country and apply for a spouse visa and so my husband has to get an extra job to get more income? thanks for the answer x

Our Response:
You can find out more via the gov.uk link here. You should find your answer within the guidance notes. I hope this helps.
AboutImmigration - 21-Sep-15 @ 12:38 PM
Hi, my husband and I got married this year on march in my country (south america) (we haven't register our wedding in the uk yet), 4 months ago he came back to England as I'm pregnant and he cant speak spanish and so cant support me in my country and I couldnt carry on working, so he got a job and its going to have six months by the end of november but his salary is only 18,000. I'm now in England with a visitor visa that runs off by the end of november as well and my baby is gonna be 2 months old by then. Can I apply for a visa to remain with my baby here as she is going to be british? there is any chance for us to stay together here or do I have to go back to my country and apply for a spouse visa and so my husband has to get an extra job to get more income? thanks for the answer x
Fio - 20-Sep-15 @ 2:10 PM
Hi, I am confused about the maintenance fund (£630 for 90 days). I will have to apply on dependent visa to join my husband currently in the UK on PBS Tier 1(General) visa. I read the rules which say the £630 funds to support me (dependent) should be in addition to £945 he (the Tier 1 Migrant) has to show to support himself. As he is not applying with me and only me applying so does he still need to prove £945 for 90 days? Or it's only £630 for me we need to show for 90 days. Please Clarify. Thanks
shu - 13-Aug-15 @ 12:47 AM
@Carmen - you can check whether you are eligible to apply via the link here. I hope this helps.
AboutImmigration - 27-Jul-15 @ 12:50 PM
Hi me and my partner live in uk since 9 April 2011 and next year we will have 5 years here in Uk . Since we came here we worked, we were both self employed for like 3 years but now we work full time employed can we apply for british citizenchip? We are both romaniens, Thanks Regards Carmen
Carmen - 24-Jul-15 @ 7:37 PM
@nishu - if your visa has expired you could are considered an overstayer, which is something the UKBA has been clamping down on. Illegal immigrants who are identified by the immigration authorities may be banished from the UK for periods of one to ten years. However, visa overstayers may avoid these banishment penalties if they leave the UK within 28 days of their visa expiring. I have included a gov.uk link: 'applications from overstayers (non family routes)', here, which will give you more information along with our partner article, Visa Over-stayers: Are They a Problem? link here.
AboutImmigration - 24-Jun-15 @ 10:45 AM
Im staying in uk since last 5yrs but visa has been expired so how can I apply for citizenship of uk if I want permanent in uk wht is the solution.thank you ,regargs nisha
nishu - 21-Jun-15 @ 3:38 PM
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