Discretionary General Grounds for Refusal for Entry Clearance Applications

In my previous article, I explained that how not to be caught by any general grounds for refusal is one of the keys to a successful visa application.


Mandatory and Discretionary

There are two types of grounds for refusal: mandatory and discretionary. Mandatory is when the decision-maker has no choice but to refuse your application if you are caught by one of the mandatory grounds for refusal. Discretionary, as the name suggests, is when the decision maker has a choice. He can choose to exercise his ‘discretion’ and allow the application. Alternatively, he can choose not to exercise his discretion and can still refuse the application.

In my previous article, I was explaining the mandatory grounds for refusal. In today’s article, I’ll be concentrating on discretionary grounds for refusal.


Suitability Requirements and General Grounds for Refusal

They mean the same things but different terms are used to describe them. ‘Suitability requirements’ is a newer term and is used with relatively recently created Immigration Rules. The ‘suitability requirements’ term is used in Appendix FM, which defines the rules for spouse applications. Also, you may find ‘suitability requirements’ in Appendix V(rules for visitors) etc. General grounds for refusal, which I explain in this article do not apply to these types of applications.

If you would like to understand the operation of suitability requirements for Appendix FM application, you can read THIS ARTICLE.


Entry Clearance, Leave to Remain and Indefinite Leave to Remain

General Grounds for Refusal can be for entry clearance, leave to remain an indefinite leave to remain application. Entry clearance application is when a person is outside the UK and wants to enter the UK. So it is a visa application from outside the UK. Leave to Remain application is when a person makes his application in the UK in order to extend their stay here. Indefinite leave to remain is when a person makes an application to remain in the UK indefinitely. This is when a person remains in the UK without any conditions attached to their stay.

It is important to understand that general grounds for refusal differ, depending on the type of application you are making. For this reason, you need to establish the type of application first. Today’s article is about general grounds for refusal for entry clearance applications. In other words, for visa applications made outside the UK.


Discretionary General Grounds for Refusal for Entry Clearance Applications

Give Them Reasons

discretionary grounds for refusal
discretionary grounds for refusal

This rule applies when a person enters the UK and the immigration officer checks if this person meets the requirement of Immigration rules to enter the UK.

Even if your visa application was successful, when you travel to the UK, the Immigration Officers are still under the obligation to double-check your reasons for entering the UK. This is to make sure you continue meeting the necessary requirements for the route under which you applied to enter the UK. For this reason, they ask you questions at the border. You need to provide the Immigration officer with the information they require to establish that you continue meeting all the necessary requirements. This applies equally to visa and non-visa nationals.

So, when a Canadian national (non-visa national) wants to enter the UK as a visitor, the Immigration officer should still check if he meets the visitor requirements. If this Canadian national, for example, says to the Immigration officer, that he changed his mind and does not want to enter the UK as a visitor, but wants to marry instead, he will be denied entry to the UK. This is because according to the Immigration rules, non-nationals need to apply for marriage visa before travelling.


The Same Route

You will trigger general grounds for refusal if you apply to enter the UK in one immigration category and then change your mind and remain in another immigration category. The Immigration rules don’t allow this. If you applied to enter the UK as a student, but changed your mind and want to enter the UK as a spouse of a British citizen you will need to reapply. You cannot enter the UK as a student if you no longer indent to study. You need to make a fresh application as a spouse.


Limited Recognition

A person cannot enter the UK if the UK Government does not recognise their country. This article gives more details about some countries’ limited recognition phenomena.


Further Help

And finally, if you are thinking of submitting your visa application in near future, first of all, you need to understand the rules of the game. At THIS PAGE you’ll get access to UKVisaSuccess.com online courses. These courses will help you dramatically reduce the chances of refusal of your visa application. As after attending these courses you’ll understand the requirements you need to satisfy in order to succeed in your visa application.

Discretionary General Grounds for Refusal for Entry Clearance Applications