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I have had a couple of ECO appeals allowed only to have them followed up by appeals by the Secretary of State, both appeals failed and the clients will now be issued with visas, which as a direct access immigration barrister practising in London is quite a relief.

The problem was that the applications had been made by agents abroad who had filled in the forms and who had put in the bare minimum of the documentary evidence required.

When the clients won I was happy they were happy and I was hopeful that the Home Office would not appeal. I was wrong. The Home Office appealed on the basis of the paucity (lack) of evidence provided.

My advice for the clients, was to prepare the appeals as if they were appealing the original application.

It was a close run thing but we were able to persuade the FTTJ that the applicants appeal should succeed.

The moral from this is that if you have an EC application please use a British lawyer at the beginning rather than local agents, you will always find British lawyers you can use for the application, indeed I have a growing number of clients who are from abroad or indeed have returned and want to make the application from Home. I stress to them that the work that they put in at the beginning will likely save money, stress and a great deal of trouble in the future.

Please if you are considering making an application for a relative or friend please contact me or a suitably qualified British lawyer as to do so at the beginning will likely serve.