Read – Option for UK Spouse visa holders who are victims of domestic abuse, violence or abandonment
Life had other plans though; she met the sponsor through family acquaintances on his (the sponsor’s) visit to her father’s house in 2012. She was cautious of him at first but after she observed how warm and friendly his behaviour towards her family was, she warmed up to him. They became friends first, exchanged life stories and eventually fell in love. Given their complicated histories (the client and the sponsor both had children from their previous marriages, the sponsor a son and the client a daughter) it took them quite a while to decide the future course of their relationship. Life had given them another chance at happiness and they finally took the leap and got married in 2015.
In 2016, the client and her daughter decided to apply for the appropriate visas to join the sponsor in the UK. Unfortunately, their applications were refused. This made her feel like her troubles have not left her life as yet but she described how supportive her husband had been during this time. They gathered the missing documents (which took almost 3 years) and applied again in 2019 but to their dismay, the second round of applications had also been refused as the client had not provided evidence of meeting the English language requirement and her relationship with the sponsor.
Read – What is the English Language requirement to get UK unmarried partner visa?
Client Successful UK Visa Application 2020
This time, we had taken on the task of working on their 3rdround of applications and we had left no stone unturned to facilitate the grant of their visas. Life had given them another chance at happiness and we were determined to not let it slip from them. We provided the client and the sponsor with a complete list of documents required in support of her and her daughter’s visa applications, including documents evidencing their relationship with the sponsor. We explained to them each of the requirements to be met under Appendix FM (family visas) of the immigration Rules and the right set of documents which would evidence meeting these requirements.
Client IELTS Test – UK Visa and Immigration
We also explained to her how meeting the English language requirement was a mandatory for persons aged between 18 to 65 years. The client informed us that she has never received formal education in English and had limited knowledge of the language thereof. This was first our challenge, we advised her that the level of English language proficiency required to be evidenced is basic and that she should be able to clear the IELTS test with a couple of months of practice. We also made it a point to help her with her practice by communicating with her in English as often as feasible. The client’s first attempt at the test was extremely stressful to her; she described it as being a horrible experience which she did not wish to undergo again. We did our best to console her and successfully persuaded her to attempt the test once again with further practice as we could see that she was able to understand and respond to us when we conversed with her in English.
The client re-attempted the test and once again described the experience as being overwhelming and nerve-racking. After two failed attempts at clearing the IELTS test the client was in inconsolable despair! She was extremely disappointed in herself, blamed herself for being unable to clear the test and was on the verge of giving up on her will to travel to the UK to be with her husband. The sponsor too was disheartened and was considering the possibility of resigning from his employment and moving to India to be with the client and his step-daughter!
UK Immigration rules 2020
UK Immigration Rules are extremely limiting in terms of allowing exemptions for the English language requirement. There have been numerous cases of refusals based on applicant’s inability to meet the said requirement. Numerous immigration lawyers and the ILPA (Immigration Law Practitioners Association) have raised valid objections to the said requirement but failed to convince the Home Office or the UK courts of its unnecessary inflexibility; it seemed like we had hit a roadblock.
At this stage, it had already been over 7 months since the client approached us with her case. We understood that this should not be the reason for the family to take such life altering decisions and grew more determined to address their issue.We began looking into the exemptions for meeting the English language requirement.
Read – UK Marriage Visa Consultant on English language Requirement
We recollected the client’s description of her feelings during the testing process and explored whether there could be a medical reason behind her inability to clear the test. We recommended the client to a psychiatrist for an evaluation, to determine whether there were underlying mental health conditions at play which could possibly explain her difficulty to successfully attempt the test. Sure enough, the psychiatrist diagnosed her with a condition which interfered with her ability to undertake the English test. With this information, we decided to claim for an exemption to meeting the English language requirement under Appendix FM, in her application. The challenge now, was that there was no mention of this mental condition in her previous applications to the Home Office under the said categories of visas. However, we decided to go forward with claiming the exemption and submitted their applications (9 months after her initial consultation with us), supported by medical evidence relating to her condition and a carefully prepared representation letter; ensuring that it details all the particulars of the case and explaining how the applicants meet all other requirements of Appendix FM and how the client stands to be exempted from meeting the English language requirement.
The client and her daughter received a decision on their applications, 7 months after filing them (owing to processing delays caused by the Covid-19 pandemic). They have been granted the visas, the family was elated! It was such a rewarding and memorable moment; we had done it again; the SmartMove2UK is a part of another family’s happy ending! Our journey with this client and her daughter’s applications lasted over 1.4 years and was an absolute roller coaster ride, the amount of hard work, determination, patience and trust which went into their applications was absolutely worth it.
Check – Your UK Spouse Visa requirements 2020 today!
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