What is a Section 120 Notice under the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002?

Applicants who make an application for leave to remain in the UK based on a protection claim, human rights claim or if a decision to remove or deport has been made against them, have an ongoing duty to raise new matters with the Secretary of State as soon as reasonably practicable after they arise. This is enforced under section 120 notice of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002 (as amended by the 2014 act). If you have been issued with a section 120 notice and need assistance in regard to next steps, please do not hesitate to contact our specialist immigration team to arrange a consultation with our Solicitors and Barristers.

What is a Section 120 Notice under the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002?

A section 120 notice is also referred to as a one-stop notice or statement of additional grounds. Under section 120 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002, the Secretary of State may serve a 120 notice on a person who has either:

  • made a protection claim or a human rights claim; or
  • made an application to enter or remain in the UK; or
  • a decision to deport or remove has been made or may be taken.

The Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016 also provides that a section 120 notice can be served in EEA claims.

Once an Applicant has been served with a section 120 notice, the Applicant must provide a statement setting out additional grounds for entering or remaining in the UK, outside the scope of their initial application. Applicants may also provide additional grounds under section 120, even if they have not been issued with a section 120 notice. There may be a time limit specified on the section 120 notice. However, once this limit has expired, the Applicant is still under an ongoing duty to provide the Secretary of State with any new information if their circumstances have changed. If the time limit has expired, the Secretary of State must still consider the additional grounds that have been raised. If the Applicant does not respond to the section 120 notice but then makes a late claim, if the late refused, the Secretary of State can certify it under section 96 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002. As a result, there will be no right of appeal if the claim could have been raised earlier. Section 96 provides that where the refusal of a claim would ordinarily result in a right of appeal, there will be no right of appeal if the claim should have been made earlier. Section 96 works together with section 120 which imposes an ongoing duty on individuals to raise new matters with the Secretary of State as soon as reasonably practicable after they arise.

Is there a duty to serve a Section 120 Notice under the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002?

The case of Lamichhane v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] EWCA Civ 260 established that the service of a section notice is at the discretion of the Secretary of State. Furthermore, the previous year case of AS (Afghanistan) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2011] 1 WLR 385, it was found that the Tribunal has no jurisdiction to consider the new matters in absence of a section 120 notice.  Therefore the power of the Tribunal to consider new grounds is restricted to the Secretary of State’s discretion, which does not appear to have a convincing procedure for its exercise.

Understanding the UK’s complex Immigration Rules and legislation can be a confusing task. LEXVISA Solicitors and Barristers are UK immigration experts with experience in dealing with complex immigration matters. If you have been issued with a section 120 notice, or wish to make a statement of additional grounds, contact us today.

Using Legal Representation if you have been issued with a Section 120 Notice under the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration status. It is possible to instruct an immigration and visa legal representative to respond to a section 120 notice.

Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your UK Immigration application or appeal succeeds, all necessary documents must be provided.

This can be a significant administrative task and you will need to submit the correct documentary evidence. The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your response to a section 120 notice meets the Immigration Rules.

Successfully respond to a Section 120 Notice under the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002

Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your immigration status and the merit of your UK Immigration appeal before your matter even reaches the Home Office. We can assist you in responding to a section 120 notice.

We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients. LEXVISA is just minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.

Preparation is the key for successful UK Immigration applications and appeals. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form

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