Immigration Appeals are the core area of our immigration work. As a specialist litigation firm of solicitors, we have vast experience in preparing witness statements and documentation for use at the immigration appeals. We use experienced counsel to ensure the best possible result for our clients. We have a high success rate with these appeals
Immigration Appeals – How We Can Help
There is a relatively short time limit to file an appeal following a rejection of a visa application. It normally involves working around the clock to organise the paperwork for this to be filed on time. We always use specialist immigration counsel to prepare the grounds of appeal; this is only courteous to counsel who will be presenting and arguing the case at the appeal hearing. We are particularly strong with appeals involving human rights issues. If you need to appeal, you can contact us for an initial discussion; please be advised that we will not charge for this call. We will need to see the grounds of refusal by the home office/ immigration caseworker if possible. Also if a copy of the application to be appealed against is available, we would like to see that as well. We can deal with the appeal either in person or if necessary by telephone conference (since some of our clients are based abroad). While the appeal is ongoing, we provide support to our clients including, if necessary a letter (prepared by counsel) to be provided to their employers to enable them to carry on working while the appeal is being processed. We would welcome any telephone call to discuss an active or prospective appeal.
We cover London, and also other areas and can meet in our Central London Office located at 32 Bloomsbury Street WC1, very close to Tottenham Court Road underground station.
Telephone conferences – can be used if you are located some way from our office or overseas – or if you have busy commitments. This method of communication works quite well and is fairly commonly used at the request of our clients. At an early point in time, we also organise a short three-way telephone conference with counsel to discuss any relevant issues.
We are a litigation specialist firm of solicitors with contentious immigration work constituting a key area of our caseload. Immigrations appeals are conducted in a similar manner to our other litigation cases.
What does an immigration appeal involve?
- Filing the notice of appeal – these is generally only a relatively short period of time to file the notice of appeal. Time starts to run from the date stated upon the notice of refusal and not when this is actually received in the post by the appellant or by the appellant’s legal representative. Appeals raised out of time are generally not permitted to proceed- save where there are exceptional circumstances as to why the appeal has been made out of time. Grounds of Appeal and a copy of the refusal notice need to be sent with the notice of appeal.
- Preparation of grounds of appeal –we always instruct experienced immigration Counsel to prepare these. We also use specialist immigration Counsel to represent our clients at the appeal hearing. It is always best for the advocate at the appeal hearing to prepare the grounds of appeal to ensure that all the points which the advocate wish to raise at the appeal hearing are contained within the grounds of appeal. An appeal usually involves complex or difficult points of law.
- Preparation of witness statements – witnesses are invariably required to be called to give evidence at the appeal hearing. Witness statements need to be field with the Tribunal and sent to the Presenting Office of the Home Office in good time before the appeal hearing. We prepare witness statements for the appellant, any relevant spouse/sponsor, and also for any third party who can provide helpful evidence in relation to the determination of the appeal. (It is not necessary to meet at our offices to enable us to prepare a witness statement. Statements are commonly prepared by way of telephone conferences).
- Preparation of a supplemental appeal bundle to present to the immigration judge at the appeal hearing. This will include any new material and evidence required to support the appeal.
- Instruction of an Expert Witness. It is not uncommon for expert evidence to be required to be given to the immigration judge. Experts reports (-containing a relevant expert declaration) need to be filed and served in reasonable time in advance of the appeal hearing. Typical experts needed are medical consultants or consultants to assess the care needs of the appellant and/or members of the appellant’s immediate family.
- Pre-hearing Conference with Counsel. This is usually recommended in that this maximises the chance of an appeal succeeding. During the pre-hearing conference we run through any relevant points and Counsel will review the evidence so far prepared and advises in relation any further evidence required to be obtained for use at the appeal hearing.
- Appeal Hearing. Again we instruct specialist barristers to represent our clients at the hearing.
- The Result of a Hearing. It is relatively rare for us not to succeed at an appeal hearing although it is not possible to guarantee that every single appeal will successful. (Our clients would be advised in advance of the hearing by specialist counsel as to the prospects of success of the appeal).
- Further Appeal. There is a further appeal upon point of laws of law to the Upper Tribunal, this normally occurs when we are instructed by clients who have lost their appeal via another legal representative and who want to take their case further. Again, we work with experienced immigration Counsel in relation to such appeals. Permission to appeal is required, and there is a relatively short period of time to make an application for such permission to appeal
What should I do if I receive an adverse immigration decision?
Our general advice is to issue a protective appeal. The time to appeal is fairly short and there is not sufficient time to consider the merits of appeal in great depth. Also, it is very difficult to persuade a Court to allow an appeal to proceed out of time. Accordingly, our advice is to issue a protective appeal and to consider the merits in depth after this has been submitted.
How much does it cost to file the notice of appeal?
We normally ask for an initial sum on account of our fees and the fees of counsel of £900 plus VAT plus the appeal fee (currently £140). The total on account payment amounts to £1220. The on-account fees of £900 plus vat are intended to be split between this firm and Immigration Counsel (£450 plus vat each). This is an on-account payment for the filing of the appeal only and it does not include work after the appeal has been filed in preparing for the appeal hearing. Counsel will settle the grounds of appeal within this on account payment which will also include a short telephone conference with Counsel to discuss the appeal and to touch upon the merits/other options to appealing.
How much does it cost to proceed with an immigration appeal?
This all depends upon the work which is required. For instance how many witnesses need to be called, how many documents need to be collected to present to the Immigration Judge, whether expert witness needs to be engaged to prepare a report to produce to the Immigration Judge at the hearing and also whether it is necessary to call the experts to give evidence at the hearing. Generally, provision should be made of an immigration appeal (for both this firm and counsel) of between £4,000 and £6,000 plus VAT plus the immigration appeal fee, but this is not intended to be fixed and as we have indicated the actual costs will depend upon what work is actually required.
The charging rate of a relevant partner of our firm who oversees the case, Lawrence Rodkin, is £250 per hour exclusive.
How do I discuss the case with your firm?
We are very pleased to discuss your case with you by telephone without charge for an initial telephone call. Alternatively, you can e-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org with details your case and we will come back to you to discuss.
Contact Simons Rodkin Solicitors LLP
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