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Thomas, Solicitor
Category: UK Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 7620
Experience:  BA (Hons), PgDip, Practising Solicitor
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Hi, I would like to know if you would be able to advise

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I would like to know if you would be able to advise me, regarding my Tier-1 visa situation.

Background: Currently, I work in the financial services industry in the US, and I have a Tier-1 visa for UK, which I obtained in Dec-2010. However, I have not activated that because my wife has been undergoing medical treatment in the US. The visa is valid until Dec-2012 and I wish to start working in the UK starting Aug-2012.

I would like to know the regulations, around the following issues :
a) If it is possible to activate the visa, after such an extended period of absence in the UK, after Dec-2010. Will I face issues during immigration, at the airport?

b) After entry to the UK, if it is possible to renew the visa, for another 3 years? Are there rules, that pertain to my situation, which I should be aware of?

Looking forward to your sound advice.

Hi Ashutosh
Thanks for your question.
I’m afraid that you will have problems here. Upon attempting to enter the UK the UKBA will certainly ask why you have not entered the UK before on the visa as it was/is a term of your visa that you should intend to work during the UK during the visa period.
If you have not done this then this is technically a breach of your visa. However, it is not one which I would expect to severely prejudice future applications that you may make because, plainly, you have an acceptable argument on compassionate grounds for why you did not come here to work on the visa. Presumably you would be able to produce documentary evidence of your wife’s condition in order to substantiate what you would say to them.

I would expect you, at the very least, to receive some stern questioning if you attempted entry in August with the visa to expire in December and more likely that they would deny you entry on the basis that they have a suspicion that you reasons for entry are not for work becasuse you had not come to the UK until that point. They have discretionary powers to deny under these circumstances and really I would expect them to deny here.
I have to be honest with you. It will also be unlikely that they would extend your stay because you have not actually started it and so they will not be inclined to revisit it under Tier 1.
If you wish to work in the UK then I would suggest that the best way forward (because Tier 1 is otherwise closed now) that an application for a Tier 2 Sponsored Skilled Worker Visa would be the best way forward if you have an employer willing to sponsor you and also meet the points based requirements under this Visa:-
I am very sorry I could not have better news for you.
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Kind regards,

Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Thank you Tom. I do have medical documentations and the fact that after medical treatment, we are currently in the family way. Because of these treatments, for the past 12 months, I have not been able to enter the UK. I don't know whether this will hold for entry under compassionate grounds.


The Tier-1 visa was intended so that I can search for employment in UK "anytime" until the visa is valid. When I received the visa in Dec-2010, there was no condition in writing, from UKBA that I have to enter the UK within a specified period of time. Or how many times, I can enter the UK. So, while what you're saying is the truth, it just doesn't seem fair to me. Additionally, if at all possible, can you point in the UKBA website, where entry conditions may be specified?


That said, will my chances of entry and extension improve, if I were to enter the UK in April ? Will the same logic hold or I can stretch myself and try finding employment in UK now.




Sorry, I had to %go out. may I reply in two hours?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Sure, Tom. I will be waiting for your reply.





Irrespective of whether a person holds a visa there is a discretionary power for the customer officials at the airport to deny entry if the suspect that a breach of the immigration rules will occur. There has to be because they police the uk's borders.

Thus, if the see unusual or erratic patterns in a person's entry to the UK they will be more suspcious and in the current climate they are generally err on the side of caution. I appreciate that your visa was intended to petmit you entry thoughout the visa term but because you have not come here it does suggest an irregular pattern.

If you have evidence of your wife's condition and when it occured then obviously you have a better chance of convincing the official, but the point I'm trying to illustrate is that nothing is guaranteed because of the discretionary power and it will depend on the UKBA official's interpretation of the position because it will be down to them whether to let you come here.

There is no formula for "if X has a visa but has not entered until Y date then entry should be refused" because the to attempt to codify something like that would be too big a task because we are talking about a huge range of human behaviour (taking in to account that if they did it for your tier 1 visa then they should do the same for all the other types of visa - of which there are many!).

I appreciate too that you may see this as unfair and I have sympathy but if I sugar coated your position for you I would be doing you a disservice.

Trust this clarifies, please click accept.

Kind regards,

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