High Court quashes decision in a judicial review against the SSHD for cancelling a Claimant’s leave to enter the UK based on allegations of deception of English language test and proficiency: R (on the application of Tazeem) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWHC 1828 (Admin)
Jay Gajjar leading Muhammad of Zahab Jamali and Stefanie Alvarez, instructed by S. A. J Legal Solicitors, appeared before Mr Tim Smith, sitting as a Deputy High Court Judge in a claim involving the Home Office’s refusal to allow entry into the UK based on allegations that the Claimant had falsely represented his proficiency in English and by extension, his previously taken English language test.
The challenge was brought under four grounds:
a) Ground 1: in failing to give the Claimant notice of the allegation/concern about the authenticity of the documentation for his English qualifications the Defendant adopted an unfair procedure
b) Ground 2: the decision to cancel the Claimant’s leave to enter the UK was irrational and/or procedurally unfair
c) Ground 3: the Defendant’s rejection of the Claimant’s application for administrative review of the decision cancelling his leave to enter was irrational and/or procedurally unfair
d) Ground 4: the Claimant was detained unlawfully by the Defendant
Jay Gajjar, acting on behalf of the Claimant argued that inadequate notice had been given to the Claimant about the Defendant’s real concerns prior to the decision to cancel his leave and that, as a consequence, he had been deprived of the opportunity to face the allegations made against him.
The fair procedure for the Defendant to have adopted was to issue a provisional “minded to refuse” entry clearance decision, with reasons, to see whether the Claimant could overcome the concerns harboured by the UK Border Force / Home Office about the quality of the Claimant’s English and, consequently, the authenticity of his English language test.
Mr Tim Smith, sitting as a Deputy High Court Judge, agreed and found that this issue alone was sufficient to dispose of the claim in favour of the Claimant. He held that the interest of fairness must be balanced against the benefits of ‘swift decision making’ at entry clearance and that on this occasion, the balance had not been properly struck. Accordingly, it was found that the Defendant had acted procedurally unfairly in line with her own policy resulting in the Claimant’s appeal being allowed.
You can view the full decision here.
Should you have any concerns about your immigration status or need assistance with your application for entry clearance, please get in touch with one of our immigration barristers on 02072423488 or complete our contact form here.