2

I have seen that the following guidance has been issued to UK Visas and Immigration caseworkers:

You need not take these actions for all applicants, but should do so when there is particular cause for concern, for example:

  • a representative has been used and the application is from a high risk sector
  • the applicant is switching from a route that has been identified as high risk

Extract from Tier 2 Guidance

This guidance seems to indicate that applicants from a 'high risk sector' may experience adversity if the caseworker notices that a representative has been instructed to assist with the application. I used to do this sort of thing and know that immigration advice in the UK is a regulated activity (Section 84 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999) placing standards of conduct and a rigorous certification process.

I have also seen the following in the Bar Standards Handbook...

The Bar Standards Board requires barristers to act with honesty and integrity, to never knowingly or recklessly mislead or attempt to mislead anyone and to never do anything which could reasonably be seen by the public to undermine their honesty, integrity or independence. The Solicitors’ Regulation Authority imposes obligations on solicitors to uphold the rule of law and the proper administration of justice. Solicitors must always act with personal integrity and must never attempt to deceive, or knowingly or recklessly mislead, or be complicit in another person deceiving or misleading the court. Similar provisions exist within the other designated professional bodies’ codes of conduct and ethics

And on the other hand, many answers to questions in the Stack Exchange domain from T2 applicants and other categories of applicants include the suggestion to get legal advice. Is SE pointing them in a bad direction? Albeit unknowingly and perhaps well-intended?

How can a T2 applicant get competent help if using a representative if UK government caseworkers see it as a 'particular cause for concern'?

Note: A T2 application in common parlance is a 'work permit'. A full description is given here.

  • Do you think they mean Representative = UK regulated approved adviser, or could it mean Representative = beware of if they've used someone abroad who isn't approved or regulated who might have coached them and/or given them faked documents? – Gagravarr Jun 22 '15 at 22:39
  • @Gagravarr, good point, but the guidance makes no distinction at all between regulated advisors and street vendors in Lagos – Gayot Fow Jun 22 '15 at 22:42
3

Is SE offering poor advice, when suggesting that legal advice might be in order?

Prefatory: As is acknowledged, Stack Exchange is an open community of Q&A sites, random strangers on the internet, most of whom offer specific response to a detailed query. Some users have comprehensive knowledge, expertise, experience; some have little, or none. The site discourages questions that are too broad or solicit opinion, or those want to chat, blog, or forum.

That said, combing through dozens of instances where legal consultation is suggested, both here and on sister-site Travel Stack Exchange, it is most frequent when there are issues, either in advance of an initial application, or often, after failure. And, most SE users take great care when pointing an applicant in that direction, and in how the wording is framed.

To the UKVI guidance on Tier applications, unsurprisingly, the Home Office does not offer a definition of what are high-risk sectors, although its policy guidance directs that special attention should be paid to those. As it affects applications, it would be safe to say that experience and knowledge govern what is genuine and what fails the sniff test.

However, engaging a representative is not a defining factor; rather, the combination triggers a closer look; just change the emphasis:

You need not take these actions for all applicants, but should do so when there is particular cause for concern, for example:

  • a representative has been used and the application is from a high risk sector

To your question:

How can a T2 applicant get competent help if using a representative if UK government caseworkers see it as a 'particular cause for concern'?

First, by looking to the UK Guidance Risks of unregulated immigration advice

Second, through your own guidance @GayotFow

You will see that there are several bodies that can authorise a person to provide immigration services, I always recommend the UK Law Society because their members can represent anywhere from the lowest to the highest levels of the process.

And to avoid confusion, the UK Law Society has corresponding members all over the planet (they are not solely British and not solely UK-based).

You can use the search facility at ILPA to find an appropriate one for your own situation.

Reference: Immigration and Asylum Act 1999 Provison of immigration services

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.