Losing The Right To Work Through “Shifting Goalposts”

Arun comes from India. His wife is Chinese. They met as students on the campus of a university in Switzerland. When they married they decided to live in England as neither of them spoke the other’s language.

Arun obtained a work permit for the industry to which his degree was directed – hotels. Over the following years he worked hard and started making progress up the managerial chain. But one career move worked out badly, and he had to leave his job before finding a new one. This did not take him long, but by then the Points Based System had been introduced, replacing the previous criteria for work permits.

Under the new system his original qualifications were considered inadequate. His degree was downgraded to a higher educational certificate, and despite several years of hotel management here, he learned that he would have to do an English test.

So the change of job caused him to lose his livelihood. Had he been able to stay in the previous employment, he would have continued under his previous work permit and obtained full settlement which was only two years away.

We brought the injustice of the matter to the Home Office, but, even on reconsideration of the matter, they refused to exercise any discretion.

However, we were able to bring the matter to the First-Tier Tribunal where the Immigration Judge decided that it was wholly disproportionate to remove this law-abiding couple. He recognised the Human Rights that had built up through Arun’s hard worked career, and the enormous disruption to them if they were sent to either of their home countries.

The Home Office was forced to reconsider and has now granted Leave.