Monday, 29 September 2014

New successful case and testimonial for an Ancestral Entry Clearance for an Australian national.

New successful case and testimonial for an Ancestral Entry Clearance for an Australian national.

“Dear Lucy and Russell, Thank you for your very professional and efficient handling of my UK Ancestry Visa application. You fully explained the situation to me and answered all my questions honestly, including those which you doubted would work, but had excellent and acceptable alternatives.  My visa application was submitted with a response timeline of 3-4 weeks and I had it back in less than a week with absolutely no queries and this is due to your excellent vetting of every entry on the application form and the requisite documentation relating to the application. This visa was very important to me and opened a door to the rest of my life. I cannot thank you enough and would recommend you to any person wishing to have a smooth transition with visa acquisition. The best day was when I held my passport in my hands with the visa stamped on a page. Thank you once again.”

This came from Patricia, a dual Australian/South African national, applying in Australia. An Ancestral visa is for the Commonwealth nationals who have at least one grandparent who was born in the UK. This is a visa for 5 years and allows to work. After 5 years one can apply for permanent residency (Indefinite Leave).

For an individual advice or to make your application as successful please contact us: info@1st4immigration.com or visit www.1st4immigration.com

If you are an Immigration Adviser or a Solicitor please visit our immigration Training and CPD website: www.1st4immigration.com/training

 

New testimonial on fast same-day UK passport renewal, from a British national residing in Qatar.

“I was very impressed with the efficiency, professionalism and responsiveness of Harpreet and Sebastian during my recent urgent passport renewal.  They were fast to respond and made the whole process stress and worry free - keeping me update each step of the way.  I'll definitely use you guys again!”

This came from Michelle, a British national who is based in Qatar. It is possible to renew a British passport within just 2-3 working days! It is actually same-day service at the UK Passport Office, so with an appointment available as soon as on the next working day the whole process is very fast. And if we have your documents by 12pm, and they are in order (or if you quickly arrange them to be in order, such as to bring new photos), then we can submit on the same working day!

Phone 0871 472 1468 or 07795471483
Email: info@multitravelvisas.co.uk  

Or come to our office from 9am to 6pm (you don’t need an appointment): 68 King William Street, City of London, London, EC4N 7DZ. We’re near Monument tube station, close to Bank and Liverpool Street, over the bridge from London Bridge station and within easy reach by DLR from Canary Wharf.

Friday, 26 September 2014

Same-day UK passport renewal, appointments next working day in London. Renewal, replacement of lost passport. Also 2nd valid passport for frequent business travellers.

Multi Travel Visas Ltd can assist with renewing a UK passport using same-day or 1 week service at the Passport Office in London, with the authorisation from you as per the government requirements. We can submit applications on next working day after receiving your documents, there is no need to wait for an appointment.

Our service fee £152 plus official Passport Office fees. For a higher fee we may be able to submit on the same day if we receive your documents before 12pm (Midday) and they are in order.

We can also help if for some reason you are unable to apply yourself. If you don't have time to travel to a Passport Office yourself we can apply on your behalf (you don't have to come to London). If you are living/working abroad you can courier documents to our London office and we can submit them promptly for same-day service. This includes if your passport has run out of pages or if you need to renew not only yours but also/or your child's passport urgently.

Passport renewal: we can renew your adult passport on same-day service or 1 week service, with applications submitted as soon as next working day. Sometimes we can submit on same working day if we have document before 12pm and they are in order. You can also ask for a ‘Jumbo’ passport (48 pages instead of the standard 32), handy if you travel frequently outside the UK and your passport is full of stamps – it will take much longer for your passport to run out of pages.

Replacement of a lost or stolen passport: we can submit promptly, as above, but replacements are only processed on 1 week service at the Passport Office.

2nd valid passport for frequent business travellers: this is possible within the timing of normal urgent services, here your employer has to provide a letter confirming you have to travel frequently for work and you need a 2nd passport to travel while your 1st one is used to apply for visas.

We also help with foreign travel visas: Russia (including invitations, ie visa support), China, India, Saudi Arabia, Kazakhstan and others. If you have a British passport but work abroad we can still process a visa application here in London. For example, if you are working abroad far from a capital city in that country, and cannot go to the Embassies, then you could courier your documents to us and we’d submit to Embassies in the UK. Example: British expats working in the Spanish islands like Majorca, needing a business visa to Russia while the nearest Russian Embassy will be in Madrid.

Contact us now: 0871 472 1468. Email info@multitravelvisas.co.uk , we reply on the same working day! Web-site: www.multitravelvisas.co.uk with the visa requirements and clients' feedbacks. Calls to 0871 number cost £0.10 per minute, emails are free.

Our office is based in the City of London, near Monument station. Also close Bank, Liverpool Street and London Bridge. Within easy reach by DLR from Canary Wharf. 

Fast Schengen visa and appointments. French visa 4 working days for most nationals. German visa takes 5 working days and spouses of UK/EU citizens don't have to book tickets/accommodation before applying for a visa

Multi Travel Visas Ltd has been accredited for years with various Embassies in London.
FRENCH SCHENGEN VISA takes 4 working days from the date of the biometric appointment for most nationals. We use separate appointments for agencies and can provide one much sooner than in the public system, at the moment appointments are available as soon as in the next couple of days.

GERMAN SCHENGEN VISA takes 5 working days from the date of appointment, usually in the next working day or so. No biometrics, no personal attendance needed. Furthermore, spouses and family members of UK/EU citizens don't have to book tickets/accommodation before applying for this visa (unlike for a French visa as per new French rules from March 2014).


PORTUGUESE SCHENGEN VISA takes 1 week from the nearest available Wednesday. No biometrics, no personal attendance needed.


FAST CHINESE, RUSSIAN VISAS and INVITATIONS, SAUDI ARABIAN and INDIAN VISAS.
 

Contact us now: 0871 472 1468. Email info@multitravelvisas.co.uk , we reply on the same day! Web-site: www.multitravelvisas.co.uk  with the visa requirements and clients' feedbacks. Calls to 0871 number cost £0.10 per minute, emails are free.

Our office is based in the City of London, near Monument station. Also close Bank, Liverpool Street and London Bridge. Within easy reach by DLR from Canary Wharf.
 

New testimonial on an Australian visa service.

“It is very much appreciated that your company helped me to get my Australian Visa successfully! I thought it could take a very long time to be granted a visa however through your help, it only took 2 weeks. Also, your customer service was really good and the staff have shown a high level of productivity which makes the process very efficient. Again, thank you very much!”

This came from Ziyu, a Chinese national, who we helped with an Australian tourist visa. 

To make your application as successful please contact us now: 0871 472 1468 or 07795471483. Email info@multitravelvisas.co.uk , we reply on the same day! Web-site: www.multitravelvisas.co.uk  with the visa requirements and clients' feedbacks. Calls to 0871 number cost £0.10 per minute, emails are free.

Our office is based in the City of London, near Monument station. Also close Bank, Liverpool Street and London Bridge. Within easy reach by DLR from Canary Wharf. 

New testimonial on German Schengen visa service.

“Dear Harpreet and Sebastian, thank you very much for your excellent and prompt service. I am very grateful for all your help on this. I am recommending my friends and colleagues to use your company." 

This came from Jeyhun, a national of Azerbaijan, who we promptly helped with a German Schengen visa. To apply for a German visa you don’t need to provide biometrics and don’t need to come to London to submit an application. We can submit your application very promptly, submit on your behalf saving you the time and money attending an appointment and collect your passport when your visa is ready. Plus spouses of UK/EU citizens don’t have to book a trip before applying for a visa.

Contact us now: 0871 472 1468 or 07795471483. Email info@multitravelvisas.co.uk , we reply on the same day! Web-site: www.multitravelvisas.co.uk  with the visa requirements and clients' feedbacks. Calls to 0871 number cost £0.10 per minute, emails are free.

Our office is based in the City of London, near Monument station. Also close Bank, Liverpool Street and London Bridge. Within easy reach by DLR from Canary Wharf. 

Thursday, 25 September 2014

New successful case for an Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR), based on Tier 1 General where the absences limits of 180 days were not met (yet it has been approved).

"Dear Natalia, we both owe you and your helpers a big thank you for all the work you put into our visa application.  Without your skilful arguments, I doubt if we would have made it, and then we would have problems.  Fortunately, it is all history now."

This came from Charles, an American national who we helped to secure an ILR, together with his Brazilian wife as a dependant. In this case Charles, the main applicant, had a Tier 1 General visa, then an extension (extension was also through us in 2012). Normally, it would be the time to apply for an ILR – after 5 years. However, the main applicant had to work in the Middle East for most of the last 2 years, so there was a problem of absences, ie being over the 180 days limit (180 days per year). That limit has been exceeded by quite a lot. Our client’s wife had a Tier 1 Dependant visa.

Normally, we would have said No. However, in this case we felt it was taking a risk and applied for an ILR. We ticked both boxes – based on Tier 1 General and Other.

Other was important because of the length of residency in the UK (over 20 years) and because of the contribution to the country. Our client, a university professor, has worked for a UK university for several years and still continues to be invited for lectures or consultancy work all over the world, from Australia to the Middle East, Europe and Asia. We have provided evidence of al l the above (it was a very thick file!). We also added evidence of families, of both spouses, living in the UK and Europe.

You may wonder why our client has not had an ILR earlier, after at least 20 years in the UK? The answer is he did. An ILR was issued in the 1990s. It was ‘lost’ when the applicant left the UK for more than 2 years to work in Australia. Unfortunately, many ILR holders are not aware of this rule. as a result, our client started in the Tier 1 General rule all over again in 2009.

Fortunately, it has all worked out! There was an element of discretion and hoping for the best, however, with such a strong case we felt it was worth taking the risk. We explained the client all the risks and once decision has been made, we worked on the case.

Our client’s spouse was also granted an ILR, after having a Tier 1 Dependant visa for 5 years (although 2 years would have been sufficient).

For an individual advice or to make your application as successful please contact us: info@1st4immigration.com or visit www.1st4immigration.com

 
If you are an Immigration Adviser or a Solicitor please visit our immigration Training and CPD website: www.1st4immigration.com/training

 

 

Wednesday, 10 September 2014

New successful SET(M) case and testimonial for an ILR of a spouse of a UK citizen whose English language test provided happened to be investigated during the application process (and a new English test was required).

“I would like to thank you Lucy (at 1st 4Immigration) for your efficiency, professionalism and dedication in dealing with my case and finally receiving my ILR. Your outstanding client assistance is one of the reasons I will happily recommend you to my friends.”

This came from Aboud, a Syrian national who is married to a UK citizen and who was applying for an ILR after 2 years on a Spouse visa (which was issued under the old rules and therefore, 2 years were sufficient).
This was a very interesting case because of our client’s chosen English language test. Mr Aboud passed an English test, which was acceptable at the time of application. However, when the case was submitted on same-day service in Croydon, we were told that the case would be held until further enquiries because of the English test. We were given a letter saying all cases with this type of a test would be put on hold until the investigation into the test provider has been completed. This was NOT a TOEFL or TOEIC, which were already being investigated at the time and which would have advised to avoid.
We advised our client to take a different test, rather than waiting for the end of the investigation into this test (which is still on-going at the time of writing of this post). We had another letter from the Home Office 3 weeks later saying the investigation was taking longer than expected, that it would be advisable to take a different test and that the Home Office would be happy to send the passport back – for a proof of ID on the day of a new test.
Our client had already made plans to take another test by then, he took it about a week later and we submitted the original certificate. Just a few days later an ILR has been granted.

Happy ending!

For an individual advice or to make your application as successful please contact us: info@1st4immigration.com or visit www.1st4immigration.com

 

If you are an Immigration Adviser or a Solicitor please visit our immigration Training and CPD website: www.1st4immigration.com/training

 

 

Tuesday, 9 September 2014

Can an unmarried partner of a UK citizen apply under Surinder Singh route (like a spouse would do)?

We are often asked about this and generally about the Surinder Singh route. It is used by British citizens and their family members to secure a UK visa for a non-EU family member in the UK – but under the EU law. Normally, spouses (and civil partners) of EEA citizens, such as Irish or French or Polish, are applying using the European law. This is where they get an EEA Family Permit for 6 months outside the UK or a Residence Card for 5 years if applying inside the UK.
 
However, very often British citizens, or rather their non-EU family members, are trying to apply for a visa using the same route. After all, the UK is in the EU and British citizens are the EU citizens, aren’t they? Those who do try to apply often get a shock of being told that this routes does not apply to family members of UK citizens, only to those of EU (non-UK) citizens. Why? Because there has to be ‘movement’ between the EU member states and ‘British in Britain’ represents no movement!
 
 
On the other hand, there is one way around it: Surinder Singh route, named after the case with the same name. It allows non-EU family members of British citizens to apply for a UK visa using the European law, as opposed to applying under the Immigration Rules. Let’s take a most common situation: a spouse of a British citizen. Under the Surinder Singh route spouses of UK citizens can apply for a Family Permit and/or Residence Card under the EU law and not under the Appendix FM of the Immigration Rules.
 
 
And who can blame them? Applying under the EU law means no English test and no  Financial Requirement (no need to prove the income of £18,600). Plus it is much cheaper, a Family Permit (if coming from outside the UK) is free of charge, ie free of the official Home Office fee, compared to £885 fee for those applying under the Immigration Rules. A Residence Card (if applying inside the UK) costs only £55 as opposed to £601-£1,001 fee for an FLR(M) application! And getting a Residence Card for 5 years is the icing on the cake! That’s instead of a visa for 2.5 years, then extension for another 2.5 years (with another fee) for those under the Appendix FM.
 
The most relevant condition, however, is that a British citizen worked or was self-employed in another EU member state before returning to the UK. This is how we get the ‘movement’ referred to in the beginning of this post. So, 'British working in France, then moving back to the UK' would work. In case of spouses, both UK and non-EU spouse must have lived together in another EU member state and been married BEFORE returning to the UK.  
 
 
Finally, this route only applies to ‘family members’, as defined by the European regulations, ie to spouses and civil partners of UK citizens but NOT to unmarried partners! Unmarried Partners (usually those who lived together for 2 years but not married) are treated as ‘extended family members’ (emphasis on ‘extended’) and therefore, unfortunately do NOT qualify for a Surinder Singh route under the current rules.
 
 
If you need help with understanding who is a civil partner and who is an unmarried partner, please read an earlier post: http://1st4immigration-visas.blogspot.co.uk/2013/06/for-purpose-of-uk-spousepartner-visas.html

For an individual advice or to make an application please contact us: info@1st4immigration.com or visit www.1st4immigration.com
 
 
If you are an Immigration Adviser or a Solicitor please visit our immigration Training and CPD website: www.1st4immigration.com/training
 

Business plan writing service for a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) visa - from an experienced Immigration Entrepreneur

As many Entrepreneur visa applicants and advisers know, this category is more about ‘extras’ than about proving the funds of £50,000/£200,000 (depending on your category). ‘Extras’ are the documents, which are not included in the Rules, so you won’t find a business plan on the list of ‘Specified Evidence’ (documents required by the Rules). However, it is mentioned on the Genuine Entrepreneur Test, which is, or rather failing which, a most common reason of refusal. If the Home Office simply does not believe your intentions are genuine then they may refuse on the ‘balance of probabilities’ (those who had refusals may recognise this phrase). We usually advise to provide as many documents as possible, examples include business bank statements/insurance (if a business is already functioning in the UK), correspondence with accountants and tax advisers and various research and contacts with potential clients (if you are planning to establish a business after securing a visa).

However, the main 'extra' thing is a business plan. Over the past several years we’ve been dealing with the Entrepreneur visa applications for our clients. As a part of each application, we have to read client’s business plan, ask to make changes and generally, to include the information relevant to the Entrepreneur visa rules as well as based on the questions a client may be asked at a interview (from our experience of clients’ visa interviews).
This allowed us to develop an approach to creating the business plans for clients, from the Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa point of view. It usually means you don’t have to have a very detailed financial analysis (although we do need the figures and a cashflow forecast), since this is not a plan to secure a bank loan. This is why many standard templates from the internet don’t work well for a visa application and have to be changed a lot while we are preparing to submit to the Home Office.
Instead we focus on what the visa officers may want to see, ie on what you will be required to do while holding this visa. For example, we cover investment of £50,000 or £200,000 (depending on your category) and what you are going to spend it on. For example, paying yourself a salary is not counted, yet it is very common for clients to do this after they secure an initial Entrepreneur visa. Paying the money to the owner of a business you are buying does not count either.  
Another example will be including a plan of creating 2 jobs and that they will be for ‘settled’ people. Most business plans we see (usually created from standard templates) do not mention these 2 jobs at all, yet the common questions of a visa interview (for applications inside the UK) are about UK employment law. A real example of our client was “How much is UK minimum wage?” So, we think it is a good idea to mention this, what types of jobs these 2 people will be doing, at least as you imagine it at this stage. Also, to mention how much you are expecting to pay them (ie a salary) and add employer’s National Insurance contributions (‘employment tax’) into the calculation.
If you are still on a Post-Study Work visa then your business plan has also include the type of services which is at NQF Level 4 or above of the Code of Practice. We often see plans with description of services copied from the Code of Practice without being adopted to your business. It is always a good idea to make it more personal to your business idea (while remaining at the required level, as per the Immigration Rules).
As any business person knows, a business plan never works exactly as written on paper. There are too many assumptions for it to work, especially the sales targets. However, writing one helps you (the visa applicant) to clarify your business idea for both yourself (and business partners if any) and for the visa officers. You may have a brilliant idea and extensive experience in the area but how do the visa officers know that? We usually say that a business plan is your thoughts on what you are going to offer your clients, how much you are going to charge, how you are going to promote your products, how you are going to be working (at an office or at home), how much money you need, what you need to buy and so on.
We also advise to explain your business idea in simple and plain language. For instance, there is no benefit in adding many technical IT terms because the visa officers are not IT professionals, yet they have to understand your business idea. If you can explain it to us, we can explain to the UK Visas & Immigration. Finally, we advise to treat it like a CV but for a business. Too many CVs contain information designed to make the applicant look ‘clever’, yet fall apart once an interviewer starts asking questions about it. The Home Office staff do read your business plan and may ask questions! They certainly ask questions about it when you are applying inside the UK, we learnt it from our clients’ cases. So we advise to keep it realistic and only to include what you can genuinely back up with your knowledge or resources.

Monday, 8 September 2014

Compliance Services for Entrepreneurs & Investors while holding a visa

If you are holding a Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) or a Tier 1 (Investor) visa we are offering to help with compliance with the Immigration Rules for the duration of the visa and extensions.  

For a yearly fee we help to comply with the Rules (and changes of the Rules). For example, during the 3 years of an initial Entrepreneur visa you have to register a business within specific time limit, create 2 jobs for certain types of people and for the duration of 12 months for each job.

An Investor has 3 months to invest the equivalent of GBP 750 000 in the ways specified in the Immigration Rules and it does not include property. The remaining amount of GBP 250 000 does not have to be invested but still has to be maintained in the permitted ways. Investments have to be maintained for the duration of the visa, which includes compensating the value if the market changes.

Our compliance service includes:

 -  Unlimited number of questions re the Immigration Rules (related to this visa category)  over the course of a year, so you would have someone to ask if you need an advice.  

- Reminder of the relevant deadlines, such as a deadline for registering a business, creating jobs or investing the funds, as applicable to your category. 

- Relevant checks for Entrepreneurs, such as whether a person you employ is eligible to be counted under the Entrepreneur visa scheme.

-  Guidance on investment for Entrepreneurs, such as “paying yourself a salary isn’t counted”.

- Advice for Investors on whether investment type meets the requirements of the Immigration Rules. This is advice on the type of an investment, if you require someone to arrange an investment for you, you would need an financial adviser for that (we can recommend the financial companies/banks who offer services to Investor visa holders but you are not obliged to use them).  Guidance on whether your investments continue to meet the requirements after the point of investment. For example, what to do if the stock market changes and value of your investments goes down.  

- Documents you needed to keep, with relation to this visa and which you may need at the next visa stage.

- Advice on what to do if your circumstances change. For example, if you wish to change from trading a sole trader to having a limited company.

- Other conditions, such as rights to work in the UK for you and dependants.

Wednesday, 3 September 2014

New successful case and testimonial on a Fiancee visa from the Philippines (it's a really nice one!)

This came from Peter, a British national applying for a Fiancée visa for his partner in the Philippines:

“I made my daily phone call to Rowena (Peter’s fiancée) this morning. She wanted to let me know that a courier had just arrived with her passport……and Visa!!!! I am still shaking!!!!  Right now I am the happiest I have ever been. I am driving the people in here nuts (that’s not us, probably Peter’s work colleagues!). I keep pinching myself to make sure I am not dreaming. I cannot wait to see the Visa for myself.  I can now book her flight (to come over to the UK). I am so happy. I may even get a good night’s sleep and stop with the stress medication. I may even have a pint lunchtime. Where would we be without you?”

Peter then kindly sent us another message, once we explained that we asked clients for testimonials for our website:

“We had been struggling to work our way through the Visa process and after running into a series of brick walls we retained 1 st 4 Immigration to help us and thank goodness we did. Their knowledge and guidance was invaluable and without that I seriously doubt we would have secured Rowena's Visa. A huge thank you in particular to Russell who for many weeks I bombarded daily with emails and documents but he always found the time to reply by return. We must also say thank you to Lucy and Natalia who also helped us and stepped in if Russell was unavailable, a remarkable team effort. Russell also has this knack of making you feel special and cared for, almost as if we were his only client when of course the reality is he is helping many others with their own Visa requirements. Put simply if you are struggling with the Visa process as we were then pick up the phone to 1 st 4Immigration without any further delay.”

You are very welcome, Peter and Rowena!

The next step will be to apply for a Spouse visa (after getting married in the UK), which will be for 2.5 years, then for an extension for another 2.5 years and after 5 years on a Spouse visa – for permanent residency (Indefinite Leave).

For an individual advice or to make your application as successful please contact us: info@1st4immigration.com or visit www.1st4immigration.com

If you are an Immigration Adviser or a Solicitor please visit our immigration Training and CPD website: www.1st4immigration.com/training

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

New successful case and testimonial on switching to a Spouse visa from a Tier 4 Student visa on same-day service in Croydon

"Dear Lucy, My special thanks to you and your team for the wonderful job and co-operation you have done with my case to get spouse visa."

This came from Saif, national of Iraq, who switched from a Tier 4 Student visa to a Spouse visa using same-day service in Croydon. We used  a Category D, Savings, to meet the Financial Requirement.

For an individual advice or to make your application as successful please contact us: info@1st4immigration.com or visit www.1st4immigration.com

If you are an Immigration Adviser or a Solicitor please visit our immigration Training and CPD website: www.1st4immigration.com/training

 

New successful case and testimonial on a Spouse visa from Russia (which took only 3 days at the Embassy to decide, a record!)

"Lucy, Thank you and 1st 4Immigration for your help in obtaining my wife's spouse visa. Gathering all the forms and evidence needed for the application was quite daunting, and would have been extremely difficult and stressful without your help. Also grateful for your prompt responses to my questions, and well ordered final set of documents for the application. I am sure this contributed to the speed of the application being granted." Many thanks, Alistair.

Alistair, a British citizen, came to us for an advice on how to bring his Russian wife to the UK, following their marriage in Russia. We advised to meet the Financial Requirement using Alistair’s employment in the UK (Category A). Once Alistair’s wife has passed her English test in Russia, Entry Clearance application was submitted to the visa centre in Russia.

Just days later it was already approved, a record!

For an individual advice or to make your application as successful please contact us: info@1st4immigration.com or visit www.1st4immigration.com

If you are an Immigration Adviser or a Solicitor please visit our immigration Training and CPD website: www.1st4immigration.com/training