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UKSolicitorJA, Solicitor
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 4312
Experience:  English solicitor with over 12 years experience
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Immigration Law
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My wife has just had her Set M indefinite leave to remain visa

refused by the home office... Show More
refused by the home office. We are very surprised. The reason given is that her English speaking and listening exam isn't good enough. Fair enough you would think but I have gone through this very carefully and believe she has done the right exam. It even says on the application form and the guidance notes that it is the right exam. The exam was done with Trinity college and even they are saying this should be the right exam for the visa you want. She has however been given another 2 years on a spouse visa (she has already completed 2 years on a spouse visa this is another 2 years) - as they have said in the letter they believe us to be ibn a genuine relationship. The most annoying thing about this is my wife who is from Iran speaks perfect English. The exam she took was From the Trinity College London and she was awarded Grade 2 Graded Examination in Spoken English Entry Level Certificate in ESOL International (Speaking and Listening)(Entry 1) A1 of the CEFR with Distiction. We sent the real and official certificate with the whole application.
On the application form it states:
Section 5 - Knowledge of language and life in uk
Note 1 Relevant qualification are:
- A pass in the test known as "life in the UK" test
And one of the following language qualifications:
- A speaking and listening qualification at level B1 or above from the Secure English Language Test (SELT) list;
- An ESOL qualification at Entry Level 3, Level 1 or Level 2, that includes speaking and listening which has been regulated by the Office of Qualifications and Examination Regulation (Ofqual). It must be listed as an ESOL qualification on the Ofqual Register and taken in England, Wales or Northern Ireland;
- A National Qualification in ESOL at Scottish Qualification Framework (SCFQ) levels 4, 5 or 6, awarded by the Scottish Qualifications Authority (SQA).
We believe we have met the requirement but have been rejected. I've read up a lot on this and can't see how we have failed to meet the requirement. If we have failed to meet the requirement please let us know or let us know if the home Office have made some sort of mistake. This all feel a little strange as we took a lot of time, effort, money, and research to put this application together in the right possible way.
On the letter from the border agency (this is long but I thought its best I type it all out for you) it said:
You applied for indefinite leave to remain as the spouse of a person present and settled in the United Kingdom but your application has been refused.
However , due to the specific circumstances of your application, a decision has been taken to grant you limited leave to remain for a period of 2 years, until 4 July 2016.
On the 28 September 2010, you entered the United Kingdom with a Tier 4 Visa, valid from Sept 2010 until Feb 2012. On the 16 January 2012, you applied for Leave to Remain as a Spouse of a Settled Person, which was issued and valid from 24 March 2012 until 24 March 2014. On 25 February 2014, you applied for Settlement in the UK as a Spouse of a Settled Person.
Settlement applications are required to show that they have sufficient knowledge of Language and Life in the United Kingdom in order to qualify under Immigration Rules.
Since introduction, on 28 October 2013, there are now two parts to the knowledge of Language and Life in the UK (KoLL) requirement, both of which must be met by all applicants for settlement and naturalisation unless the individual is exempt. From this date applicants will be required to:
Pass the Life in the UK test
have a speaking and listening qualification in English at B1 CEFR or higher, or an equivalent level qualification.
It is noted that you have submitted a Life in the UK test certificate that has been verified as a 'Pass'. Therefore, you meet the requirements under one part of the KoLL requirement.
However, it is understood that you have provided a single ESOL certificate, indicating that you have taken and passed a speaking and listening qualification in English (Entry ) at A1 of the CEFR. However, this is not sufficient to meet the requirements set out. You are required to meet Entry Level 3, or Level 1 or Level 2 under the framework.
Therefore, you are considered to have failed to demonstrate that you have sufficient knowledge or Language and Life in the United Kingdom, as you have not established that you have passed both parts to the Knowledge of Language and Life in the UK (KoLL) requirement.
For the reasons stated above, your application has been refused, as you have failed to meet the requirements of paragraph 289 with reference to Paragraph 287(a)(vi) of HC395 (as Amended).
to be continued on the next part...
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I am afraid the refusal is correct, a B1 is required for indefinite leave to remain and citizenship applications, the A1 is for the initial spouse visa.
I would suggest that your wife sit for a B1 and if she passes, submit a new SET(M) application.
See here for confirmation of the above
Which is as per the Home Office refusal letter you have set out.
May I help further?
Customer reply replied 3 years ago.


That may be the case but I believe we have followed closely what they have said on the form:

- An ESOL qualification at Entry Level 3, Level 1 or Level 2, that includes speaking and listening which has been regulated by the Office of Qualifications and Examination Regulation (Ofqual). It must be listed as an ESOL qualification on the Ofqual Register and taken in England, Wales or Northern Ireland;

In this paragraph it doesn't talk about any grades just that you need a qualification which we have achieved.

I do feel this paragraph is false information they have supplied in our case or they have not been clear - would you not agree?

Also - if there is nothing we can do about this since our application has been refused when would we be able to re-apply? Am keen to figure this out as they are very costly applications. Let me know

I most certainly agree that the requirement is not clear from the wording on the form. It may be worthwhile making a complaint about this formally to the Home Office, involve your local MP if possible, get your wife to sit for the B1 test and then ask the Home Office to grant her ILR without any further application fee.
Or if you simply wish to re apply, this may be done as soon as your wife passes the B1 test and provided it is within the validity of the 2 year extension just granted.
Hope this clarifies
Customer reply replied 3 years ago.

I do feel pretty upset about this. I spent a lot of of money on this and simply expected my wife to have the right Visa. I really feel we did everything that the form suggests and the guidance notes suggest. I will be making a complaint on their website and letting them know that if I do not get a good response that I will be going to my local MP.

I really feel that the information provided is not the right information in this circumstance. I will get my wife in the mean time to take the B1. It says on the website complaints procedures can take 20 days.

Is it worth me getting a solicitor or professional involved in this? Is it likely that they will take in to consideration my complaint and understand why this has happened? or is it more likely they will dismiss it? - not sure how the home office works.

I would expect them to investigate and try and resolve this satisfactorily, they are a reasonable bunch of people especially if they see how the confusion arose so easily.
In my opinion, you can do it alone with the help of your local MP, you can also take the matter to the Parliamentary Ombudsman so I would not recommend getting a solicitor as it will rack up fees for you.
All the best, ***** ***** feedback