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HSMP Judicial Review

In April 2008, a High Court decision changed the way extension applications from individuals who obtained a HSMP approval letter before 7th November 2006 are considered. The judgment only applies to individuals who joined the HSMP under the arrangements that were in place before it was suspended on 7th November 2006, and they do not apply to migrants who have since obtained a HSMP visa.

The visa extension test that existed until 7th November 2006 required HSMP visa holders to show that they had taken steps to become economically active during their stay in the UK. When the new system was introduced in December 2006, these requirements were changed, and HSMP visa holders were required to meet a points assessment by scoring a total of at least 75 points for previous earnings, qualifications, age and UK experience. Additionally, meeting an English language requirement became mandatory.

A judicial review was brought, mainly, on the grounds that individuals who had already joined the HSMP before the Immigration Rules were changed had a legitimate expectation that the new HSMP criteria would not be applied to them when they came to apply for extension.

For individuals who received a HSMP approval letter under the arrangements that were in place before 7th November 2006, the requirements for an extension of stay are those that were in place before 7 November 2006. These also apply to the following categories of applicants:

  • Individuals holding current valid HSMP leave, and who have applied, or will need to apply for extension in the future;
  • Individuals whose extension application was refused, and are either in the process of appealing this decision, or have switched to another visa category, or have left the UK;
  • Individuals who did not apply for an extension, and have either switched to another visa category or have left the UK.

Any grant of leave under the ‘old’ HSMP rules will confer the same rights and impose the same conditions as the individual’s previous HSMP leave.

If you would like us to assess your case, or provide you with detailed feedback and advice on your situation, please do not hesitate to contact us.


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