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Immigration Update •••••••••••••

May 2014

In this issue:

Definitive Immigration Services has moved!

• Definitive Immigration Services has moved!

Effective Monday 28 April 2014, Definitive Immigration Services has a new home. We are delighted to now be located at:

• Passport return service extended to applicants for Settlement • No same day British passport renewal service for Children • Net Migration to the UK miscalculated by 350,000 • Speedy Visas in China! • Priority Service for UK Visas in Australia • UK Visas and Immigration introduce International Enquiry Service for Visa Applications • Passport “Passback” Extends to India • Tip of the month: ‘Unlawful’ Home Office Enforcement Officers • Definitive Training Sessions

www.definitive-is.com | Tel: 0207 406 7660 | Fax: 0207 406 7674 | info@definitive-is.com

Definitive Immigration Services Ltd 4th Floor, 5 Chancery Lane London EC4A 1BL Our main line number is now 0207 406 7660 and our contact email address remains: info@definitive-is.com. We look forward to seeing you in our new office soon!


No same day British passport renewal service for Children During recent weeks Her Majesty’s Passport Office has ceased to provide the renewal of children’s Passports via the same day premium service. This has affected many families with travel plans during the Easter break.

Passport return service extended to applicants for Settlement. The Home Office announced the introduction of an urgent passport return service for Indefinite Leave to Remain applicants on 6 May 2014. Settlement applicants will receive their passports back before a decision has been made on their application. In most cases passports should be returned within 34 weeks of submission to the Home Office. The Home Office launched the passport return service for Tier 2 Intra Company Transfer (ICT) in July last year. Following positive feedback the Home Office plan to expand this service across a number of other categories. The passport return service should allow Tier 2 settlement applicants to have their passport and Biometric Residence Permit returned within 7 - 10 days of their application being created by the Home Office. Having both passport and BRP will allow applicants to travel whilst their application is being considered. However, it is vital applicants check the validity of their existing leave to remain. Although the applicant’s current conditions of stay are automatically extended whilst an in-time application for settlement is under consideration with the Home Office, they are not guaranteed reentry to the UK. It is vital applicants do not leave the UK whilst their application is pending unless they can be certain of their return prior to the expiry of their current Tier 2 visa. Passports and BRPs will be returned automatically to applicants; they do not need to request its return. If you have any queries about this new service or indeed need any assistance in completing the application paperwork our team at Definitive would be pleased to assist you. www.definitive-is.com | Tel: 0207 406 7660 | Fax: 0207 406 7674 | info@definitive-is.com

Presently the only passport renewal service being offered to British children is the standard ‘Postal Service’ which on average is taking 3 to 4 weeks (and even longer as we know of one parent who waited 6 weeks and had to involve their local MP to chase it) and a Fast Track Service whereby the application is processed in 1 week not including Bank holidays or Public holidays. The Fast track Service costs £87 to renew a Child’s passport. The Definitive team offers a comprehensive passport support service and is even able to secure last minute appointments for urgent cases. Our Team work ensures the requisite documents are collated in the correct format, minimising any complications with the submission of the application to the Passport Office. In light of the recent changes we would recommend not leaving any British Children’s passport renewals to the last minute. Like any government agency the Passport Office can be prone to backlogs, delays and technical glitches meaning that the renewal could take longer than a week. If you need any assistance with anything that has been mentioned in this article or with assistance in completing the application form, our team at Definitive would be pleased to assist you.


Net Migration to the UK miscalculated by 350,000

Speedy Visas in China!

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has confirmed that the net flow of migrants into the UK has been underestimated. The ONS found that after the 2011 census the previous projections had in fact overlooked a large number of people entering the UK and the reason for this was due to “inadequate sampling.”

In an effort to attract more visitors from China, the UK visa application centres in Shanghai plan to offer a 24hour visa service at some stage in the summer. The newly expanded office in Shanghai now boasts seven biometric enrolment rooms, where applicants’ fingerprints are taken, and seven video conferencing rooms, where officials in the UK interview student visa applicants. The centre can accommodate up to 120 applicants at a time, leading to speedy processing times. The proposed 24-hour ‘super priority’ service will cost applicants for visitor visas £600 ($1,003) in addition to the £83 standard visa application fee.

What is Net Migration? Net migration is the number of people coming into the UK minus the number of people leaving the UK. The figures to date did not count some citizens coming into the UK from the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Slovakia and Slovenia between 2004 and 2008. This was partly because IPS (International Passenger Survey) interviews focused on major airports such as Heathrow, Gatwick and Manchester and not any of the regional airports. It has transpired that there were a large number of citizens from these countries arriving into the UK from these smaller airports. It has been well publicised that the Government wishes to cut net migration to under 100,000 by the next general election which is fast approaching and clearly an unrealistic goal based on the new figures. Migration Watch UK chairman Sir Andrew Green has stated: “This is final confirmation that net foreign immigration under Labour totalled nearly four million, two-thirds from outside the European Union.” “It also shows that the peak of net migration was almost 275,000 a year, making it even more difficult for the present government to get the numbers down to the tens of thousands.” What this report essential outlines is that there is no accurate figure for net migration and there is a need for better system in order to calculate it. The report clearly indicates that migration most likely was higher within 2001 to 2011 in comparison to the published statistics.

www.definitive-is.com | Tel: 0207 406 7660 | Fax: 0207 406 7674 | info@definitive-is.com

The number of UK visitor visas issued to Chinese visitors in 2013 jumped 39 percent year-on-year to 291,919, the largest increase of any country where the UK issues visas, according to Home Office statistics. If you would like Definitive’s assistance or have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on 0207 406 7660 where a member of our team will be happy to help.


Priority Service for UK Visas in Australia Applicants can purchase a priority visa service in Australia to fast track their UK visa applications. Using the priority service enables applications to be placed at the front of the queue to be processed. Australia offers a 10 working day priority visa service for settlement applicants and from 1 April 2014 a 3-5 working day priority service for non-settlement applicants (i.e. Tier 2, PBS Dependants etc). The priority service fee is £100 for non-settlement applications and £300 for settlement applications. It should be noted that using the priority visa service does not imply or guarantee in any way that the visa application will be successful. All visa applicants must still meet the requirements of the UK Immigration Rules. Please also note that the amount paid for the priority service and the visa application fee, is not refundable if the visa application is refused or, in exceptional cases, takes longer to process. If you would like Definitive’s assistance or have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact us on 020 7340 8585 where a member of our team will be happy to help.

UK Visas and Immigration introduce International Enquiry Service for Visa Applications Since 1 April 2014 all UK visa applicants can utilise the new international enquiry service to find information about the visa application process. The service is provided by Hinduja Global Solutions (HGS) with the aim to answer all enquires relating to visa applications. The service provides answers to queries in 20 different languages, making the application process easier for each person. The enquiry service operates at various times in conjunction with the working hours of each country. The service is run from the UK and the UKVI hope this will ensure a quick, accurate and professional service. Visa applications can be complex and require very specific documents, Definitive would be happy to assist with all aspects of the entry clearance process, if you have any queries please contact us on 0207 406 7660.

www.definitive-is.com | Tel: 0207 406 7660 | Fax: 0207 406 7674 | info@definitive-is.com


Passport “Passback” Extends to India The Home Office Passport “Passback” service will now extend to all 12 Visa Application Centres in India. The service allows applicants to retain their passports while decisions are made on their visa applications – a service which will be of particular benefit to those required to travel for business during the 3 week processing time. The service will however be capped to 75 slots per day in each Visa Application Centre. Additionally the Home Office has introduced a number of fee changes effective today: • The passport pass-back service will cost INR 4200 per applicant • Priority Visas (earlier known as “Fast Track”) which are processed within 2-3 days will cost INR 10500 • Prime time Appointment at the VAC will cost INR 5250 • The User Pay Service for the VAC in Goa will cost INR 6195 • The Super Priority Visa Service fee remains INR 63000

Tip of the month: ‘Unlawful’ Home Office Enforcement Officers Have you ever been subject to a visit from the Home Office to see if you have any illegal workers onsite? You may be interested to read the recent report from the Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration… John Vine, Chief Inspector, has published a damning report of Enforcement Officers, finding that out of the 1,049 enforcement visits in the financial year 2013/2014, 59% of these visits were not justified and potentially unlawful. He has also condemned the Home Office for ‘widespread noncompliance’ with guidance and ‘completely lacking’ effective management of these processes. Section 28CA of the Immigration Act 1971 allows Immigration Officers to enter and search business premises and make arrests without the need for a warrant, where there is a reasonable ground to suspect that persons onsite are illegal entrants, committing deceit or liable to detention. It is important to note that the case must be urgent, i.e. there is a strong risk that without a visit, the person committing an immigration offence is likely to abscond. The visit must be approved by an Assistant Director before Officers are allowed to proceed. John Vine has concluded that, following a review of files: • The power to enter business premises was used unlawfully in 6 cases • Senior Management have an inadequate and insufficient knowledge about the use of this power and whether it is being used lawfully • Officers in South London used this power to enter business premises in 69% of its’ illegal working operations, whereas it was only used in 3% of the same operations in East London • 22% of cases did not have sufficient information on potential offenders before entering business premises • In 29% of the cases, the use of the power was not justified • 22% of the cases sampled showed that the justification for the use of the power was speculative only – which is outside of the remit of Section 28CA and these did not have sufficient evidence of immigration offenders being onsite at business premises

www.definitive-is.com | Tel: 0207 406 7660 | Fax: 0207 406 7674 | info@definitive-is.com


What does this mean for businesses? Following the critical report, the Home Office will now be undertaking more training with relevant Senior Management and Assistant Directors on the use of these powers to avoid similar concerns being reported again. Almost 25% of all illegal working visits are used under the power of entry under Section 28CA. You should carefully check what power the Enforcement Officers are claiming to use when they conduct an illegal working visit at your business premises. If you feel that the reasons stated are not justified and/or the use of Section 28CA is unlawful, you are within your rights to challenge this with the Enforcement Officer. Remember that an illegal working visit is the end result of a number of steps having taken place in the background. Normally, following intelligence from other government bodies or police forces – or even from the public – and following research, an ‘intelligence package’ on the business is considered by a task meeting. Following the scheduling of an operation and determining an Officer in Charge, the power of entry is then reviewed with the illegal working operation then being conducted. The Home Office are therefore more than likely to have some reasonable ground to believe that you have an illegal worker onsite. Whilst you are able to challenge, do remember that Enforcement Officers will take into account your level of co-operation with their visit. They will certainly expect that an illegal working visit will take businesses by surprise, yet if you completely refuse entry or are un-cooperative, you must be aware that this may cause more suspicion to be aroused. It may also make the visit more confrontational and difficult. The overall aim of illegal working operations is to remove those working illegally from businesses in the UK. If you have nothing to hide, then be as accommodating as possible to Enforcement Officers. Certainly our experience is the more difficult you are, the more difficult the Enforcement Officers will be.

www.definitive-is.com | Tel: 0207 406 7660 | Fax: 0207 406 7674 | info@definitive-is.com

Completely accurate and up-to-date information on all your workers onsite has never been more important. Would you be able to prove to the Home Office today that you are not employing anyone illegally? Would you be confident to handle an unscheduled visit from Enforcement Officers appearing at your office in their vans and uniforms? If you are concerned about your ability to track and monitor all workers across your organisation, get in touch today. If you are uncertain of even one worker onsite, don’t delay in finding out their immigration status in the event of an illegal working operation. At Definitive, we support businesses to manage, understand and track the immigration status of all workers. We can assist with Enforcement visits, act on your behalf and send representations to the Home Office, and preserve your businesses’ name to avoid incurring fines and being ‘outed’ on the Home Office website. Call us today on 0207 406 7660 or email us on info@definitive-is.com to discuss any potential concerns.


Definitive Immigration Services training schedule Our most recent sessions received great feedback, our Trainers were found to be ‘very professional and knowledgeable’ and ‘hugely informative on our sponsor duties’. Clients also commented that the smaller sessions were invaluable as they had the opportunity to hear how other clients were managing the changes. Our next training sessions are as follows: Immigration Update – Changes. 19 June 2014 915am – 11:45am: This session aims to deliver a thorough and practical update on developments in the law and operational policy over the preceding 6 months, including: • sponsor licence reporting and renewals • unannounced compliance visits • extensive changes to Tier 2, including introduction of five year COS, increase in minimum salaries, transition from occupational codes from 2000 to SOC 2010, increase in maintenance • closure of Tier 1 for extensions and settlement • passport return programme for settlement cases • changes to entry clearance processes • extension of Electronic Visa Waiver Right to Work – Best Practice. 31 July 2014 9:15am – 11.45am: A great course for recruiters and those HR professionals involved with initial or annual passport checks. The training will cover: • An overview of the legislation governing the obligation on employers to prevent illegal working in the UK • The process for verifying the right to work in the UK • Employers’ duties for record keeping and monitoring the on-going right to work • An overview of the Civil Penalties process • An introduction to forgery awareness

www.definitive-is.com | Tel: 0207 406 7660 | Fax: 0207 406 7674 | info@definitive-is.com

Tier 2 & Tier 5 Refresher. 10 September 2014 9:15am – 11.45am: This session is aimed at HR professionals new to the wonders of immigration or those simply wishing to dip in and refresh their knowledge. The session will include: • An overview of the Points Based System and sponsorship within the broader political context. • Preliminary issues in sponsoring employees • Completing the Resident Labour Market Test • Switching into Tier 2 • Restricted and unrestricted COS • Sponsor duties Our training sessions are offered complimentary to our registered clients as an additional benefit and we are pleased to schedule these to enhance your understanding and knowledge of the complex world of UK Immigration. Further information and registration forms will be sent out shortly. However to register your interest at this time please email: info@definitive-is.com.


If you have any queries regarding any of these articles and information bulletins, please contact us on 0207 406 7660 or at info@definitive-is.com

Visiting Definitive? Here’s how to find us. We are located at: 4th Floor 5 Chancery Lane London, EC4A 1BL We are just a short walk away from Chancery Lane and Temple underground station. Simply go to reception and they will direct you to our offices on the 4th floor. You can find a link to a Google map on our website Contact us page.

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WWW.DEFINITIVE-IS.COM Immigration Update © is produced by Definitive Immigration Services. The editorial material expressed herein are not necessarily the opinions of Definitive Immigration Services, its employees, directors or other staff. If you would like to subscribe to the newsletter please send and email to info@definitive-is.com or telephone 020 7406 7660. Definitive Immigration Services Limited asserts copyright on original material in this publication. No portion of this issue should be published in any form without express written consent of Definitive Immigration Services Limited © 2014. Definitive Immigration Services is a limited company registered in England & Wales No: 4180730 VAT Number 769986044 Registered Address: Old Court Mews, 311 Chase Road, London, N14 6JS

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Newsletter May 2014