The overarching reason why Lisa’s Law exists is because we want to help people. Whether this be supporting someone just starting out to get their first business up and running or assisting a family in moving into their first home, we aim to be a pillar of support throughout the entire journey.
We recently had a touching case come through, and we are really pleased with how it turned out.
Names and details of the case have been altered to respect our client’s privacy.
The case in question…
A mother of a 14 year old girl is applying for settlement on the basis that her child is a British Citizen who cannot live independently and requires her full support and care.
For the purposes of this article we will refer to the mother in this case as Claire and her daughter as Daisy.
The applicants past…
Claire is originally from China and was originally granted an Entry Clearance visa in 2002 as a Tier 4 (General) Student, which was valid until December 2006.
Claire met a Mr David Yung, who is the biological father of Daisy, in January 2006. She applied for further leave as a skilled worker before her original leave expired, but this was denied.
Claire fell pregnant before her application was denied and subsequently stayed in the UK another year, giving birth to Daisy in 2007. Then she took the voluntary option to return to China with her child.
Claire then returned to the UK with her daughter a few years later on a visitor visa to visit Mr Yung. While here, she reapplied for further leave to remain on the basis of her relationship with Mr Yung (a British citizen) and as Daisy’s (a British citizen by birth) primary caregiver. During this time Mr Yung passed away.
This application was refused as Claire had changed address and failed to receive the necessary materials in time. She therefore returned to China with her daughter.
What happened next?
Claire and Daisy moved to New Zealand where Claire worked as a chef, earning a respectable wage of around £30,000. Daisy is in possession of a British passport on account of her being born in Newcastle.
Success at last!
Still wishing to settle in the UK they reignited their application once more. This time with the help of a friend in the UK.
Claire was offered a full time position as a receptionist for a construction firm, which would earn her £23,500 a year. More than the £18,600 minimum requirement. This means they are financially independent, requiring no help from the state.
What’s more, the same friend who offered her the job has provided Claire with a place to stay, which is fit for both her and Daisy to live in.
Claire also passed the English requirement test (A1 level IELTS).
So, finally after many years of trying Claire and Daisy were able to settle in the UK. A happy ending at last!
Problems and solutions…
This case was complex due to a few reasons. Getting a carer visa is very difficult at the best of times as the Home Office is always wary of people trying to get one under fake pretences. This is why we had to be militant in providing evidence that the relationship between the mother and daughter was strong and long lasting, and that they had a proven history of living together as a family. We made sure the correct mixture of proof was presented to the Home Office.
It is very important that the immigration officer sees that the parent is taking an ‘active role’ in the child’s upbringing and planning to continue after the application, so proof of financial as well as spiritual care is important. This can be images of trips together, proof of providing school equipment and clothes etc. Letters from the child’s school and GP/dentist confirming the parent take the child to school/appointments or go to parent evenings can be helpful as well.
Another important part of getting this type of visa is the ability to proving the applicant can look after themselves and the child without claiming any benefits or relying on the state for housing. You need to be earning at least £18,600 and have a suitable place to live, which is not too small and cramped, or run down, which has suitable sleeping areas for all who live there.
What’s more is that in our particular case discussed above, the mother and daughter had already been living in New Zealand which is an English speaking country. It is sometimes easier to win cases such as this if the family are living in a country which is further removed from the UK (or whichever country the applicant wants to settle in). This is because it would be more difficult and harsh on the child to try to adapt to a land so different from the one they were born in. So, it was fortunate that in this case the Home Office did not challenge this too much, and chose to focus on what would be truly best for the child.
Solo guardianship of the child could not be questioned, as the biological father of Daisy had already passed away. Circumstance such as these can sometimes evoke compassion from the Home Office.
The role of Lisa’s Law:
It is a very complicated business, as you can see from the story above, to actually be successful in your journey to settlement. You need someone who knows what the Home Office is looking for, someone who knows immigration law like the back of their hands, to ensure that the right documents are submitted and the correct information is given. Otherwise it is like walking through a minefield with a blindfold on!
In this case we made sure that all necessary and original documents were submitted to the Home Office in a timely and organised manner, leaving no excuse for things to be missed or any incorrect information to slip in.
We are ready and well equipped to handle your case, with specialist solicitors just a phone call away, so feel free to call us on 020 7928 0276 or email into firstname.lastname@example.org if you need any legal advice.