We offer a highly bespoke service for individual and family visas. At an initial fixed-fee consultation, we will consider your individual personal circumstances and advise you on your eligibility under the rules. We can take care of all aspects of a client’s visa application in competitively priced, fixed-fee packages or, where only legal advice is sought, on a time-only basis.

Partner Visas

Up until July 2012, it was reasonably straightforward for a couple to obtain a visa for a non- British citizen spouse, providing the couple could demonstrate (from a wide range of sources including third-party support) that their relationship was genuine and they could maintain themselves without recourse to public funds. Under the old system a spouse visa was issued for two years and indefinite leave to remain, otherwise known as permanent status, was issued at the end of this period. 

This fairly light touch system was completely overhauled in 2012, when the Home Office introduced a new chapter to the Immigration Rules – known as “Appendix FM” – which imposes a strict set of substantive and evidential requirements that must be stringently adhered to. The law in this area is stringent – case workers have almost no discretion to overlook errors and every year, hundreds of visas are refused.  

Whilst many couples meet the substance of the rules, satisfying the evidential requirements can be difficult, particularly for those with more complex financial arrangements. The main problem is that not every source of a couples “income” can be counted towards the financial requirement. In addition, the rules for those who are self-employed, and for employees of family businesses, are extremely complex. 

Child Visas

Children born overseas to a British citizen (who was born in the UK), will automatically be British at birth. However, children born overseas to British parents who were not born in the UK will not be automatically British. 

If one of the child’s British parents lived in the UK for three years prior to the child’s birth, the child may qualify to register as British. Otherwise, the child will require a visa to come to the UK. 

A non-British step-child of a British citizen will also require a visa to come to the UK, if accompanied by their non- British parent.

Extended Family

Since the changes made in July 2012 to family migration, it has been extremely difficult to obtain a visas for family members other than partners and minor children.

It is also very difficult to obtain a visa for another family member, e.g. adult children, siblings and parents.

An application made on behalf of an adult dependant relative will only succeed where it can be demonstrated that the applicant needs long-term care from a parent, grandchild, brother, sister, son or daughter who is living permanently in the UK. That care must be needed to assist with everyday personal and household tasks, e.g. washing, dressing and cooking.

In addition, the applicant must be unable, even with the practical and financial help of the sponsor, to obtain the required level of care in the country where they are living because it is not available, there is no person in that country who can reasonably provide it, or because it is not affordable. 

Applicants under this route must also be able to satisfy the decision-maker that they, or their family, can maintain the applicant without recourse to additional public funds.

The former requirements make it very difficult for an applicant to succeed in this category.   

We have experience of making successful initial applications and having refusal decisions overturned by the Immigration Tribunal. This is an area of immigration law where appealing a decision can bring success as the courts have proven to be sympathetic to the very difficult situations that families can find themselves in due to visa barriers.

Ancestry Visas

Ancestry visas are for citizens of Commonwealth countries aged 17 and over who are able to demonstrate they have a UK born grandparent. Ancestry can be claimed on the basis of adoption (of the applicant or relevant parent) and can also be based on being born outside marriage in the UK.

An applicant must also demonstrate that they are able and plan to work in the UK.     

An applicant who comes to the UK on an Ancestry visa can settle in the UK after five years, providing they meet the additional settlement criteria.

Why choose us?

Experience: our immigration team has more than two decades’ experience making successful personal visa applications, and the team is Director-led by a Law Society accredited specialist in immigration law.

A highly attentive, responsive and tailored service to suit the needs of clients. 

One-stop legal service: we collaborate regularly with colleagues specialising in wealth management, tax and pensions to provide a holistic service that is highly valued by international families. 

Access to immigration networks: we are members of a number of professional bodies, including the Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association (ILPA) Family Working Group and the ILPA New York Working Group. We are also involved in high-level engagement with Home Office officials to provide the best possible service to our clients, and our team is constantly monitoring and advising on changes to immigration law. 

To arrange a fixed-fee consultation today, contact us.

  • I would like to say a big thank you to Jacqueline Moore and the rest of the team from Shepherd and Wedderburn. My wife and daughter’s visas were granted so quickly that I couldn’t believe it. The help I received was absolutely amazing. I would recommend Jacqueline to anyone who is looking for professional help. Five stars.

    Alexander Voronov, November 2018

  • During the process of completing the application you and your firm made the process seamless. You were clinical in the documentation that was required, your legal reps were very specific and promoted the family motive, you also advised us to get many references. We believe that your attention to detail and personal involvement at every stage of the application for us resulted in the successful application being granted, despite applying outside the rules.

    Angela & Bruce Potter, June 2019

  • Jacqueline agreed to challenge my daughter’s visa refusal in the Immigration Tribunal. The case was very complicated. We needed serious legal help and support. We got the outcome we needed and my daughter’s appeal was successful.

    Dr Kate Forrest, November 2018

  • My husband and I turned to Jacqueline for assistance after a rejected visa and waiting over a year for an appeal date. We wish we had gone to Jacqueline from the very beginning. She submitted a completely new spouse visa application for us which was very well organised and set out in an easy to read format for the application assessors. She was very efficient, kept us informed throughout the process and made a very stressful situation seem relatively straightforward. We will definitely go to Jacqueline with all of our subsequent visa applications and would highly recommend her to anyone without hesitation.

    Sian Ruscoe Silva, November 2018

     

  • The biggest benefit of the whole process was that Jacqueline and the team took all the stress away. Jacqueline and her team are very good at communicating and clearly explaining every step in the process, providing progress reports, managing unexpected issues and ensuring I knew everything was taken care of and well managed the whole way through.

    Jane Holloway, March 2019