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Immigration Appeals & Courts

Immigration Appeals & Courts

We understand that once you are faced with a refusal of an application, or is being considered to be removed or even being deported from the UK, you need to understand your legal rights. 

All immigration, nationality and EU decisions can be challenged, but it is not always about lodging an appeal but understanding whether there was an error in law in the decision making. 

The types of appeals that may be lodged

You can appeal to the First-tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) if the Home Office has decided to:

  • refuse your protection claim (also known as ‘asylum claim’ or ‘humanitarian protection’);

  • revoke your protection status;

  • refuse your human rights claim;

  • deport you or refuse you a residence document under the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016;

  • revoke your British citizenship;

  • deport you, refuse or revoke your status, or vary the length or condition of your stay under the EU Settlement Scheme; or 

  • refuse or revoke your travel permit or family permit under the EU Settlement Scheme.

The First Tier Tribunal deals with the appeals against decisions made by the Home Office with regard to permission to stay in the UK or a deportation from the UK or entry clearance to the UK. They also hear bail applications for people in Immigration Detention. However some decisions can now be certified, which means, you wont have a right to appeal from the UK. However you can bring forward a Judicial Review application. 

Legislation and previous decisions

Read the rules the tribunal must follow and the guidance it’s issued. You can view our case studies on the home-page to read about cases we have been dealing for the last 2 decades. 

All parties must follow the rules and process in the Tribunal Procedure (First-tier Tribunal) (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) Rules 2014. The tribunal will make a decision based on legislation, including the:

  1. Immigration Act 1971.

  2. Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002.

  3. Immigration, Asylum and Nationality Act 2006.

  4. Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement Act 2007.

  5. UK Borders Act 2007.

  6. Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009.

  7. Immigration Rules.

  8. Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016.

  9. The tribunal fees are set out in the First-tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) Fees Order 2011.

The president of the tribunal has issued guidance which provides more detail on certain issues. There are also older guidance notes for the Asylum and Immigration Tribunal which still apply to the First-tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber).

First Tier Tribunal Immigration Decisions

A Tribunal may give a decision orally at the hearing, but usually it is done in writing after the appeal. The Home Office has a low success rate in winning cases at the appeals stage. An Immigration Appeal is a hearing by one or more Judges in a number of locations in the UK and the Judges usually do not decide whether or not the appeal has been allowed or dismissed at the Hearing. Usually you will be informed as to the outcome of the case in writing.

Please note, there have been a number of legal changes to all appeal process, so please take care when you read this page. Due to the continuous legal changes, sometimes those changes are not reflected here. 

Lodging your permission to appeal to either the First Tier Tribunal or the Upper Tribunal

If the Immigration Judge dismisses the appeal, we can help you to make an application for permission to appeal to the Upper Tribunal. We can only make an application for permission to appeal to the Upper Tribunal if the Judge made a mistake in the way in which he/she applied the law.

This means that you cannot appeal further just because you did not agree that certain facts are wrong. In order to be allowed to take the appeal further, you must demonstrate how the Judge made an error in law in the way they applied the law to your case and why this made a significant difference to your case.

If you are granted permission to appeal further, then your case will be transferred to the Upper Tribunal.

If your appeal is allowed at the First Tier Tribunal the Home Office can still ask for permission to appeal to the Upper Tribunal if the Judge has made a mistake. If the Home Office appeal is refused, or if the Home Office does not appeal, then you will be granted status by the Home Office.

Upper Tier Tribunal Decisions

The Upper Tribunal is responsible for handling appeals against decisions made by the First Tier Tribunal relating to visa applications, asylum applications and the right to enter or remain in the UK.

They also handle applications for Judicial Review of decisions made by the Home Office. In applying for permission to appeal a dismissal by the First Tier Tribunal, we will need to demonstrate that the Judge in the First Tier Tribunal made an error of law.

Examples of errors of law include if the Judge made a mistake about the meaning of the Immigration Rules or did not follow a binding decision of a higher Court.

The First Tier Tribunal may have overlooked important evidence or made a decision when there was no evidence. It is essential that when applying for permission to apply to the Upper Tribunal that you will receive expert advice in identifying the error of law.

If you are granted permission to appeal to the Upper Tribunal there will be either a hearing before one or more Upper Tribunal Judges or the case may be decided without an oral hearing on the papers available.

The Upper Tribunal will send Directions setting out what steps are required to be taken before the hearing. You may need assistance in submitting written submissions and skeleton arguments setting out your arguments and expanding on the Grounds that you used to apply for the permission to appeal.

If you want the Upper Tribunal to consider new evidence you must submit it to the Tribunal and the Home Office in advance.

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