UK Immigration: Home Office Mistake leaves US National Stranded

Over the weekend, it was reported that a newly wedded couple have been forced apart for over a month due to an error made by the UK Home Office. Mr David Treasure, a British national has been forced to leave his wife, Mrs Nancy Treasure in Fuerteventura, an island in the Atlantic Ocean after being misinformed by the Home Office.

Facts of Immigration Case

Mr and Mrs Treasure got married on 7 April 2015, days after Mrs Treasure’s UK Visitor visa expired. Despite the expiry of Mrs Treasure’s UK visa Immigration officials allowed her to stay for the ceremony but warned the couple that in order for Mrs Treasure to settle in the UK as Mr Treasure’s wife show would have to make an entry clearance visa application. The couple left the UK on Saturday 25 April 2015 with the intention of making a UK Spouse Visa application abroad. Mrs Treasure is an American national and was allegedly told by UK Home Office officials and an immigration solicitor that she could make her UK visa application from Fuerteventura. However, upon arriving at the British Consulate the couple were advised that they could not make the visa application from the island. As a result Mr Treasure was forced to leave Mrs Treasure in Fuerteventura, in a bid to resolve the immigration matter in the UK.

Mrs Treasure could not return to the UK as she was already told by Immigration Officials that she would be refused entry in the UK and deported as a result. In addition to the couple allegedly receiving wrong advice on where they could submit their UK Spouse visa application, they faced a further blow when Mr Treasure received a letter from the UK Home Office claiming that Mrs Treasure was still in the UK and was outstaying her welcome. Mr Treasure stated his frustration with the UK Home Office:

“We’re waiting for the Home Office departments to start singing from the same hymn sheet. The Home Office told us to start again as they obviously don’t communicate with one another and seemed to have no record of us submitting our travel documents and no idea that we had left the UK on 25th April.”

The Home Office have admitted that the letter was sent in error, however, the couple are still yet to know the fate with regards to Mrs Treasure’s return to the UK. The ongoing immigration matter is clearly having a toll on the couple emotionally and financially, as Mr Treasure confirmed that Mrs Treasure is struggling with being alone and that her impression of the UK has soured.

Applicable Immigration Case Law

Case law is prominent when defending a client’s immigration matter. Furthermore, when appeals are heard at the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, judges turn to the decisions of others when deciding the fate of immigration matters. The most recognised immigration case concerning a married person switching visas under the immigration law is  Chikwamba  v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2008] UKHL 40.

In the decision of the above mentioned immigration case the Lords were highly critical of a tendency in tribunal decision-making that requires an migrant with a family life in the UK to return to their country to apply for entry clearance. In these decisions, the tribunal has refused to pre-empt the decision of an entry clearance officer. The House of Lords ruled that conditions in a country of origin must be drawn upon to decide whether it is proportionate to separate a family or a partner to return home to make an entry clearance application. It added that there is a limit as to how far the Government can go in removing discretion from the decision-making process. The appeal was allowed and it was held that the removal of the Appellant would violate her and her family’s article 8 rights.

From the facts of the case there are differences to Mr and Mrs Treasure’s matter, as there are no children involved. However, both Mr and Mrs Treasure are in their 60’s and have been left in limbo due to alleged errors of the UK Home Office and incorrect legal advice. The case is still progressing and for the sake of the couple will hopefully be resolved soon.

Successful UK Spouse Visa Applications & Appeals

Our team of experienced and professionally qualified immigration solicitors and barristers will be able to guide you through the process of making a an application for entry clearance so you can join your British partner in the UK or a leave to remain in the UK application step by step and limit the possibility of failure by complying with the strict letter of law.

We also undertake a great deal of appeal work before the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal and have a successful track record of successful results for our clients. We have the experience and the knowledge required to take your case forward successfully. If you have had an application refused, contact us to discuss your case so that we can provide you with a case assessment.

Contact us so that we can review your case and provide you with an assessment.

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