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Thomas
Thomas, Solicitor
Category: UK Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 6305
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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Dear Sir/Madam, I need some advice on UK Visa applications

Customer Question

Dear Sir/Madam,

I need some advice on UK Visa applications for a Ukranian friend of mine who would like to visit me in UK for a two to three week holiday. We have tried to do this once before and she was refused a visa. But this was five years ago and we would like to try again. However we would like to tread carefully as we would not like a second refusal.

We have been through the general visa application form together and we feel that the difficult section is section 5 detailing income and employment situation.

She was turned down last time for three main reasons - it was felt that she did not have a sufficient tie to her country, that she did not have much history of travel outside Ukraine and there were also concerns about her wishing to take her three year old infant brother with her. She was a 23 year old university graduate at the time and had a small retail business. She had travelled only to Turkey and Egypt (both countries not requirng visas for Ukranians). I gave my financial details to show that I could support her and it was acknowledged that this was not a concern so we feel that the reason behind it being declined was that it was felt that she could be tempted to overstay.

The situation now has changed. Five years ago we were quite recent friends and now we are longstanding close friends and I have visited her in Ukraine many times. We have holidayed together in Croatia, Italy and Hungary and she has had a Schengen visa to cover the latter two. Regarding employment, she is in the process of establishing a business so she will be self employed. There are legal documents regarding the establishment of her company which she could produce to show this. This business will use her postgraduate psychology qualifications which she has recently gained. As this is just starting however I am supporting her. So she has low income unless we acknowledge this current support. However she has some substantial savings which she can show. She has also recently inherited the apartment of her late grandfather and grandmother so she is a property owner which she is renting out. She is also now the legal guardian of her brother (now eight years old). This is because her mother (a single parent) has died. (Even five years ago she was informally looking after him as her mother was not in good health and that was the reason she was wanting to bring him then.) She is in receipt of a state benefit for being his guardian which she can include in her income. The establishment of her business is her incentive to return home as is her brother's continued schooling.

I will be paying for her and her brother's airfare and they would be my guests at the house I own in London so there would be no accomodation and food charges. I can again make out a sponsor's letter saying all this as last time. I can enclose payslips and bank statements. The payslips should be fine showing that I have a regular and substantial income but I am regularly in overdraft so perhaps this would not be so wise this time (last time the bank statements showed good balances.)

I think this summarises our situation. We were considering putting in section 9 for further information all the details of changes since last time in the hope that this will motivate them to consider it better. Could you let me know what you think are our chances of success this time.

Just one more point, her brother is on her own passport as Ukraine does not have separate passports for children. Will he need a separate visa and if so does it need a separate application? The child visas section of the UK visas website seems geared towards children travelling on their own. But the general visa application form does have a section for dependent children also travelling so if she just fills this in will any separate visa follow automatically?

Thank you for you help.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: UK Immigration Law
Expert:  Thomas replied 1 year ago.
Hi

Thanks for your patience.

They will need to apply for visitor’s visas, as you have correctly identified.

The eligibility criteria for a visitor's visa is as follow, is that you need to show that:-
• You want to visit the UK for no more than six months;
• You intend to leave the UK at the end of your visit;
• You have enough money to support yourself during your stay in the UK without working or needing help from public funds

You have to try and show them that they have continuing obligations in the Ukraine which will continue after the visit and therefore convince them that you are not a risk of overstay. Things like a letter from their employer stating they have a job (if they do) and are expected to return to continue that job, return flight tickets, evidence of continuing accommodation (eg. tenancy agreement of evidence of ownership of a property, bank statements showing the money you have available). Basicallly anything in documentary form which shows a continuing commitment to their home country and imposes an obligation to return there.

If she is self employed then she needs to show that she has established the business and that it requires her to be there to get it off the ground. However, if it is relatively recently formed then this may be difficult. However, if you are otherwise able to show family and social ties to the Ukraine, along with the requisite financial records then it may be overlooked.


If you will assist them during this intended stay you should ask them to go to a local solicitor to draft a sponsorship declaration in which they state the terms of your visit, that they are to return at the end of it, that if you are in a relationship with either of them then you know that they MUST leave at the end of the visit because it would harm the chances of any future application made to secure leave to remain on the basis of that relationship, that you shall accommodate you and pay the costs of any unforeseen expenses that should occur during his stay so that nether of you will need to access public funds.

This should cost around £50+vat and you can find immigration solicitors via:-
http://www.lawsociety.org.uk/choosingandusing/findasolicitor.law

The sponsorship declaration should be included with her application and you should also annex to the declaration evidence of your finance so that you can meet the obligations you refer to in the declaration. Needless to say you should also include proof of your identity (ie. certified copies of your passport) and address.

The brother should be listed as a dependent in her application and should also submit his own application (drafted by her). You need to check on the passport situation, that is quite old for a child to not have a passport. Check with the Urainian embassy, if this is genuinely the case then it should be fine.

The previous rejection is not a reason for refusing this one, so they cannot simply refuse because they have refused before. If she meets the eligibility criteria and adequately evidences her application(s) then she should be okay.

Please remember to RATE my answer OK SERVICE, GOOD SERVICE OR EXCELLENT SERVICE or above if you are satisfied that you have received the correct legal advice (even if it is not the answer you wanted to hear), otherwise I do not receive any credit for answering your question.

If you are not willing to rate my answer as OK SERVICE, GOOD SERVICE OR EXCELLENT SERVICE then allow me to assist further by replying asking what clarification you require rather than rating my answer at levels below.

If you wish for me to provide you with further guidance on any question you may have in the future then please submit a further question to the board requesting me either by my profile or by marking your question. “FAO Tom”.

Kind regards,


Tom
Expert:  Thomas replied 1 year ago.

Is there any further information you require?

I just want to ensure that you are satisfied, so please let me know if you have any further queries on your position. Please remember to rate my answer, if you are satisfied.

Kind regards,


Tom


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