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Thomas
Thomas, Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 7481
Experience:  UK Lawyer holding practising certficate for England & Wales.
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I am a UK citizen, I have been living in the US 6 years. I

Customer Question

I am a UK citizen, I have been living in the US for almost 6 years. I met my wife in the US (she is a US Citizen) almost 3 years ago. We married in the US last August 2015. We decided to move to the UK this year for family reasons in January. My wife (Natasha) was told she had to go back to the US as she was on a visitor’s VISA and apply for a “settlement VISA” so she can re-enter the UK. Natasha went back to the US at the beginning of May.
This is my issue, we have no way of knowing how long this application takes and she has been back there for over 2 months now and it is becoming a real problem for us to be apart so long. I have called the customer service line (01423 213387) the people you speak to as less than helpful, and all they give you is a generic average lead time for applications which I can get from the website.
I need to speak to the immigration officer that is dealing with Natashas case, or we want to cancel the application so she can get her Passport back and come and stay on a visitor’s VISA again until we can figure something out.
Can you offer any advice to help us?
Kindest regards,
Daniel.
Submitted: 5 months ago.
Category: Immigration Law
Expert:  Thomas replied 5 months ago.

Hi Daniel,

Has she actually submitted her spouse visa application in the US yet?

Tom

Customer: replied 5 months ago.
Hi Tom, she has submitted everything and gone through the biometric process in May. After contacting you I managed to get hold of someone in the Sheffield Home office and have submitted a requested to expedite her application. I am at a complete loss as to the lack of communication from the UK gov.
Expert:  Thomas replied 5 months ago.

Hi

Thanks. I will be able to answer at 9 a.m.

Tom

Expert:  Thomas replied 5 months ago.

Hi

Thank you for your question and patience, I’m Tom and I’ll try to help you.

I would not be too worried about the length of time it has taken since you have submitted your application. It is not uncommon for it to take 3-4 months for them to decide the application.

All you can do is request they expedite the application, whether they will be able to or not depends on how many applications they have at the moment.

You are free to withdraw the application but I consider that this would be unwise the circumstances. The reason for this is that if she withdrew and then attempted to enter the UK on a visit visa the entry clearance officers would be aware that she has recently made an application for a spouse visa to live permanently in the UK.

This would mean that it would likely that she would be refused entry on the basis that the entry clearance officers would suspect that she might seek to stay in the UK beyond the expiry of her visit visas. It happens quite often that they refuse on this basis.

My view is that if you have proved she meets the eligibility criteria in your application then the best option would be to wait a little longer until the application is determined. If the application was uncontroversial and contained all the necessary supporting documentation then I would normally expect them to decide the application within 3 months (so, sometime in July)).

The lack of communication from the home office is fairly typical, they consider that they are there to simply determine the application on the basis of the information contained in the application and the supporting evidence provided. It’s very frustrating of course, but it’s simply the system that applicants have to deal with (and I am very sympathetic to your view).

My goal is to provide you with a good service. If you feel you have received anything less, please reply back as I am happy to address follow-up issues specifically relating to your question.

Kind regards,

Tom

Expert:  Thomas replied 5 months ago.

Hi

Is there any further information you require?

I just want to ensure that you are satisfied, so please let me know if you have any further queries on the information I have provided. If you have no further questions then please do leave positive feedback.

Kind regards,

Tom

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