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UK_Lawyer
UK_Lawyer, Solicitor
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 2458
Experience:  I am a qualified solicitor and an expert in UK law.
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I am a Nigerian international student studying for an ACCA

Customer Question

I am a Nigerian international student studying for an ACCA accreditation at the London School of Business and Finance, Birmingham Campus. I am currently seeking a visa extension to enable me complete my studies. I have met all requirements as I have the required funds maintained for the required period, have shown academic progression and have a 96% attendance figure. The delay now is due to the school being unable to issue me with a CAS as they are awaiting UKVI sign off before they do. This is due to the college recently getting its HTS license back after a period of suspension. I have been informed that I have 28 days grace after my visa expired and that UKVI are treating my case on an urgent basis. However, my visa expired on November 1st and I am still awaiting UKVI permission till now while my grace period ends on November 29th. This has left me very anxious as I may have to leave the country on Novemeber 29th to avoid being in breach and this would cause me to miss my ACCA exams scheduled for December. Kindly advise what options may be available to me. Thanks, Richard
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  UK_Lawyer replied 2 years ago.
Hi, thank you for your question, I will be happy to help you today.
I am sorry to hear about your unfortunate position.
If you feel that the CAS will not arrive prior to your 28 day period laspsing then there are tow options for you.
The first would be to apply for further leave to remain on a discretionary basis, this would be an application using form FLR O in which you would need state that due to the home office taking their time in issuing your college with their HTS, you would like permission to extend your current stay until you are issued with a CAS from your college. The form require will be as the following link:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/application-to-extend-stay-in-the-uk-form-flro
If you are issue with the CAS in the required period of time then you can withdraw your application and then apply for a tier 4 application.
The second option would be to apply for a tier 4 visa without the CAS letter and then once you obtain the CAS letter submit this to the home office. This is a more risky application as you may have your application decided before receiving your CAS.
I would have advised you to send the FLR O application prior to 1st November as you still had a valid visa at the time, but now because your visa has expired it makes it a little more difficult.
I hope this answers your question if however you feel that the answer does not cover all the points raised in your question please do not hesitate to ask further questions until you are satisfied with my answer.
Kind regards
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hello,

Thank you for your response.

I wish I had had information like this earlier.

However if I do take the option of asking for an extended stay through the form you mentioned, how long does the decision usually take? This is because my last exam is on Dec 10th, and if I can stay till then that will be perfect.

Secondly, If i do apply and end up staying beyond the 28 day grace period would I be in breach of the law for overstaying?

Lastly, Do you have an idea how much the process costs?

Regards,

Expert:  UK_Lawyer replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your reply.
1. The decision can take at least 2- 3 months on an FLR O application.I think you will be able to stay here until at least the end of December 2014 or end of January 2015.
2. The fact that you have applied within 28 days of your visa expiring would mean that you have submitted a application within the 28 days, so while your application is pending, although you would be an overstayer ( as you are now as your visa has expired) you would not be removed from the UK until a decision has been made.
3. The cost of an FLR O application is £601.00
I hope this answers your questions.
Kind regards
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thanks again for the help.

But if I apply for the FLR O then I get my CAS while waiting for a decision, you say that I can withdraw my application then apply for the visa as normal?

Would I have to receive confirmation that the FLR O has been cancelled before I apply for the visa? And secondly, would I be submitting my passport along with the FLR O in which case do I wait till I get it back before applying for the visa?

Thanks

Expert:  UK_Lawyer replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your reply.
1. Yes, you should write to the home office to withdraw your application and state to them that you wish to apply for a Tier 4 visa as you have now been issued with a CAS.
2. Yes you would receive confirmation, but what I would suggest you do is tell the Tier 4 department that you have just withdrawn your application and they should get all your documents from the FLR O department to whom you have sent your application too.
3. Yes you would need to submit your passport with the application for it to be valid. Ideally you should wait for your documents to be returned before applying for a Tier 4 visa, but because you do not have valid visa at the time of application the home office would not return your passport when you withdraw and you would need to submit your tier 4 application informing the home office that they already have your passport as part of an flr o application.
I hope this answers your question.
Kind regards
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thanks so much.

Final questions:

1) If i wanted to make this FLR O application, is it done online or by post? And if by post , does the postal rule apply whereby I would have been deemed to have submitted once the date of posting falls within the 28 days?

2) Would I be able to recieve this correspondence between us via email so that I can be able to refer to it later?

3) Based on your vast experience, have you handled a similar case as mine and what do you feel my chances of success are? I would not hold you to it as I just want an informed opinion before I apply as GBP601 is quite a hefty sum of money.

Regards,

Expert:  UK_Lawyer replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your reply.
1. Yes you have to submit it by post, the date of application will be the date of postage. You need to submit this within the 28 days.
2. The information will always be available on this thread link, just copy the link and you can access this conversation at any time in the future.
3. For me you have 3 options, to let the visa run out beyond the 28 days and then apply, hoping the home office consider it. Or return to your home country and apply from there or apply for FLR O try and bide some time and the submit your application.
What you need to understand is that you will be applying as an overstayer if you apply after 28 days and you need to submit an application in before the 28 days period expires, this would then give you more time to apply for a tier 4 rather than waiting in the uk for 2 or 3 months after the expiry of your 28 day period and the home office doesnt have any application noted on their system, The application for flr o will protect you from returning home.
I hope this answers your questions, if so please provide a rating so i can get credited for my time.
Kind regards
UK_Lawyer and 2 other Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hello,

Thanks for your advice earlier.

I submitted the FLR O application this morning and I am also applying to other universities so as to get a CAS so that I can withdraw the application and make a new visa application.

When I do get the CAS, would I be making a visa extension request or a request for a new visa? This is because, given that I have overstayed, can I still apply to extend a visa that has already expired?

Expert:  UK_Lawyer replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your reply. Its a pleasure
No you cannot extend a visa that has expired, you will be making an application for a new visa as you have now applied for a different category.
Kind regards