Orchid of Siam UK Visas For Thais
UK Visa For Thai Nationals Specialists & Immigration Appeals Help & Advocacy, Bangkok & Epsom Offices.

We join the sorrow of all the people of Thailand, wherever they may be, at the tragic news announced today.
With effect from today the cost of a paper hearing rises from £80 to £490. The cost of an oral hearing rises from £140 to £800. This applies to all ECO decisions made on or after today. This rise applies to appeals made to the First Tier Tribunal.
On 25th September Lek will be reporting on the Berlin meeting to the UK commitee in York.

From 26-28th August 2016 our Suthisa (Lek) will be one of two Thais reprenting Thai people in the UK at the coference on the rights of Thais in Europe and the continuing roll out of the Thai Helpline to assist any Thai people in Europe with any problems or difficulties they face, this is not limited to immigration matters.

 Lek willl deliver a keynote speech covering individual European countries immigration rules, EEA family permits, the problems faced with Free Movement Rights, Surinder Singh applications, the effect of the ECHR and the possible visa changes in the UK after Brexit.

This conference is hosted by and taking place at the Royal Thai Embassy in Berlin where Lek will be staying as a guest of the Thai Government.

Thai representatives of all European countries will attend.

We will have a gazebo staffed by a Thai OISC regulated immigration adviser and an Immigration Appeals Court Advocate to give free advice on visas at the following fairs.

2/3 July 2016 Royal Victoria Park, Marlborough Lane, Bath, BA1 2NQ.

23/24 July 2016 War Memorial Park, Cross Borough Hill, Basingstoke, RG21 4AG.

6/7 August 2016 Parker's Piece, Parkside, Cambridge, CB2 1AA.

13/14 August 2016 Castle Field, Southsea Seafront, Portsmouth, PO5 3ST.

20/21 August 2016 Preston Park, Preston Road, Brighton, BN1 6AU.

3/4 September 2016 Harbourside Park, Catalina Drive, Poole, BH15 1TQ.

We will be available 10.00 - 17.00

We look forward to seeing both new and old clients.

In the case of child PS v ECO Bangkok, a case very closely followed by a large number of people in Berkshire, we acted for the applicant on appeal and the case was allowed.
Today in the case of CT v ECO Bangkok the Tribunal ruled in favour of our client - a 20 year old stepson of an Italian national working in the UK married to a Thai lady - and the application had previously been refused by the Embassy under EU regulations. The family permit is now to be issued. This case has attracted a lot of attention in Humberside. Our Tony Kierans was the counsel for the appellant.

For all visa applicants seeking settlement in the UK with a limited period of leave (usually 33 months) a surcharge of £200 per year - total £600 will be levied at the time of application. If the visa is refused this will be automatically refunded.

For non EEA applicants already in the UK a further extension of leave such as FLR will also carry the surcharge of £500.

There is no surcharge for those applying for indefinite leave to remain.

In AS v ECO Bangkok the refusal for the child's settlement visa was overturned at the First Tier Tribunal and our grounds for appeal were accepted without the Home Office contesting them. This case had been followed closely by the local press in Lincolnshire. We are delighted for this family who must remain anonymous.

Today at the Tribunal we represented a child previously refused a settlement visa by the ECO Bangkok for lack of sole responsibility.

The appeal was allowed.

This case was amusing in that the step-father of the child had previously worked in security at the British Embassy in Bangkok and was well kinown to all the staff there.

An anonymity order was made.

The Home Office has announced that starting in March 2015 long term visas of over 6 months will no longer be issued. Instead a visa valid for 30 days will be issued along with a letter informing the applicant which post office in the UK they must collect their biometric residency permit at within 10 days of arriving in the UK. Failure to travel within the 30 days period will mean that a new paid for visa application must be made. This system will start in Delhi before being rolled out across the World by the end of July 2015. No date has yet been given for implementation in Bangkok.
Today at Hatton Cross IAC hearing centre we solely represented our client (a spouse settlement visa) in PB v ECO Bangkok who had been refused for using deception in a previous application. We were able to prove that deception had not been used and the visa was issued.
In ML v ECO Bangkok the visa for a child to join his mother in the UK was refused on the basis that the mother had been living in the UK for 5 years and therefore could not satisfy the sole responsibility requirement. We appealed and the case was heard at Hatton Cross. The Judge accepted our adduced evidence and interpretation of the Law and the appeal was allowed at the hearing.
Today our Tony Kierans was the sole counsel in the case of PC v ECO Bangkok at the Immigration Appeals Court. This was a child visa case that had been refused by both the ECO and ECM at the Embassy on the grounds of sole responsibility not being proven and accommodation not being available. The Home Office employed a barrister to represent them and the case was hard fought with the Judge issuing an immediate determination in favour of the appellant, our client. This case has attracted much interest among the Thai community in the West Country and Dorset in particular. Costs were ordered against the Home Office.
Beware that the reception staff at the visa application centre in Bangkok are sending all visitors to an unqualified visa agency instead of directly to the VFS offices as they walk in.

There are plenty of visa touts around and even one offering free Tuk Tuk rides to their offices in the VFS building. Genuine visa operators are regulated by the OISC and are forbidden to tout for business.

Do NOT believe anyone who says they represent us. Our offices are in the building opposite and you are welcome to walk in and see us for help and advice but you will not find us on the pavement touting.
As from 3rd January 2014 legal adoptions registered in Thailand will be added to the list of recognised country adoptions accepted by the UK. This does not apply to adoptions made under the Hague convention or to adoptions registered before 3rd January 2014.
We are delighted to have been appointed as immigration consultants to a large importer and wholesaler/retailer of Asian foodstuffs based in Surrey with branches in the UK and Europe who employ staff from several Asian countries.
We are pleased to annouce that our role has been extended indefinitely as immigration advisers to the students studying at the Canterbury, Farnham, Epsom, Maidstone and Rochester campuses of the University.
21/2/2013 In the case of NW v ECO Bangkok the Embassy refused the visa. This case has attracted much attention. We represented the child and the Judge agreed that the Embassy had acted incorrectly and ordered that the visa be issued. Costs were awarded against UKBA.
In the case of NC v ECO which has been very closely followed   by an Arabic language newspaper we represented the appellant and her two children. The entry clearance for all three was granted on appeal. Reporting restrictions apply. We were the sole legal representatives.
On 16/6/2011 we were the sole representatives in CS v ECO at Hatton Cross AIT a case refused on the basis that the appellant had overstayed in the UK by three years and the sponsor was in receipt of public funds and could not support his wife. The Judge accepted our arguments and allowed the appeal under paragraph 281 of the Immigration Rules.
On 10/6/2011 we solely represented an eight year old child in TP v ECO at Sutton AIT. The case revolved around whether a mother who had lived apart from the child for five years had retained sole custody.  The Counsel for the Home Office argued against allowing the Appeal. However the Judge accepted our submissions that sole responsibility had been maintained and allowed the Appeal.
In the Appeals Tribunal at Hatton Cross today we represented BW v ECO regarding a third refusal under Rule 281 (iii) intention to live together.

We are very pleased that the Judge accepted our pleadings and has allowed the Appeal.

This was their first appeal having used another agency to try for their three visas unsuccessfully before engaging us to lodge an Appeal.
In the case of CE V ECO Bangkok we challenged the refusal of her visa  under Rule 320 paragraph 18.

She had been in the UK previously unlawfully and had also received a two year prison sentence whilst in the UK.

Our Tony Kierans acted as lead Counsel and the Appeal was granted with the Immigration Judge agreeing that paragraph 18 was indeed a case of double jeopardy and therefore accepting our contention that this Rule was unlawful.




The information supplied is for guidance only and is subject to sudden and frequent change without notice as the Home Office UK Visas & Immigration branch updates its policies and procedures.  Our clients will be dealt with under the prevailing rules at the time of application.

Permanent UK Residency is officially called Indefinite Leave To Remain (ILR).

The requirements vary depending on when the initial visa application was made, not when it was granted.


For a married partner or civil partner they must have been living together in the UK for two years after the registration of the marriage or partnership in the UK but holidays abroad are allowed.

For a married partner who entered the UK as the already married spouse of a British citizen they must have lived in the UK for a full two years but can holiday abroad during this time. This is an important point as in the past very often people were given a visa valid for two years from the date of issue by the Embassy and they then delayed, say, six weeks before travelling to the UK.

This means that they could not complete a full two years residency in order to apply for ILR and had to apply for further leave to remain in order to bring them up to the full two years. This is expensive.

It is always best to plan the journey to the UK and request on the application form for the visa that a date is given as the Embassy can forward date a visa by up to three months. As from 22nd July 2008 visas were issued with a validity of 27 months to allow people time to plan their journey to the UK and still be able to complete a full 24 months residency without having to apply and pay for further leave to remain in order to complete the two years requirement.

Any children under 18 years of age on the date the application is submitted to the UKBA can be included in the application of a parent.

Proof that you have been living together for the last two years will be required and this includes official letters or documentation sent to your address in your joint or single names, utility bills, telephone bills etc. Normally at least six items from at least three different sources covering the two years will be required.

Additionally proof that the applicant can either support themselves or that their British partner can do so without recourse to public funds. It is acceptable if the British partner is claiming public funds in his right only.

In order to apply for ILR the applicant will need to have either passed ‘The Life in the UK’ test or have attended an approved course of English for speakers of other languages (ESOL) with the required Citizenship content. If your English ability has been assessed as Entry Level 3 or higher you must pass the test, only people whose English is below this standard can apply based on having completed a course.  The tests are organised by Learn Direct who can also supply details of educational institutes running courses in your area. They can be contacted on 0800100900.

If the applicant has not passed the test or attended a course and received a letter from the school they cannot apply for ILR and must apply for further leave to remain in order to stay in the UK. This leave is at the discretion of the Home Office.

Once granted permanent residence it can be revoked if you spend over two years outside the UK or if you regularly stay in the UK for only a short period. It is therefore best to apply to become a British Citizen one year after ILR has been granted.

On receiving the ILR vignette in the passport people are often surprised to see an 'Expiry Date' on it. This is not the date of expiry of the ILR but the date of expiry of the passport. ILR can be transferred to a new passport. The current machinery in use by the Home Office does not permit a vignette to be produced without an expiry date and you should not be concerned about this anomaly. Your ILR does not expire.

The Home Office are in the process of replacing a vignette in the passport with an ID card stating the immigration status of the holder along with a photograph and biometrics held in a chip. If you hold an ID card you MUST carry it with you if you travel abroad together with your passport as it is the only evidence of your right to re-enter the UK.

ILR can also be applied for after 10 years lawful stay in the UK.

The UKBA can take up to 14 weeks to process a regular postal application, far longer if applying under the 10  year rule, and if the applicant needs to request their passport back the application will be treated as withdrawn and no refund of the fee will be made. This can sometimes mean that the applicant’s current leave to remain expires and they will have to make an entirely fresh UK visa application. Leave to remain beyond the date shown in the passport is automatically given whilst the Home Office processes the application for ILR.

It is important to note that an ILR application MUST be made NO earlier than 28 days before the 2 years leave expires. Otherwise the application will fail and the fees are not refunded. Similarly an application received after the two years has expired may fail with the loss of the fee and an entirely new visa application will need to be made overseas, normally in the home country of the applicant. The applicant is then illegally in the UK and may be deported. There is some discretion for the Home Office to accept out of time applications so you should contact us for advice if you are in this position. 


The applicant must have been granted a total of five years stay in the UK as the spouse or partner of a British Citizen. As from October 2013 they must have passed the Life in the UK Test and English  to at least B1 standard in Life Skills SELT (Secure English Language Testing). One year's worth of the financial requirement must also be met. If a person does not meet the test requirements they can continue to apply for further leave to remain until they have lawfully lived in the UK for 10 years when an application for ILR can be made under the prevailing long residency rules.

Please note:

The Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act (Chapter 11) received Royal Assent on 21st July 2009. In addition to making changes to Customs and Passport control arrangements changes to the path to British Citizenship have been introduced which  became effective in July 2011 two years after the Act was passed. It is intended that indefinite leave to remain in the UK will be replaced by a probationary citizenship category of leave to remain.

Briefly these changes are that:

The applicant must have been in the UK at the start of the qualifying period.

The applicant must not have been absent from the UK for more than 90 days in each year of the qualifying period.

The applicant must have had qualifying immigration status for the whole of the qualifying period without a break.

On the date of application the applicant must have either probationary citizenship leave, permanent residency, a qualifying common travel area entitlement, a Commonwealth right of abode or a permanent EEA entitlement to remain in the UK.

An applicant who on the date of application has probationary citizenship status granted for the purposes of employment within the UK and has been in continuous employment since the granting of this leave.

An applicant must not at any time in the qualifying period have been in the UK in breach of the immigration laws.

For people with a relevant family association to a British national (for example the wife of a British national) the qualifying period before Citizenship can be applied for is raised from three to five years.

For people with no relevant family association the qualifying period is eight years.

All applicants will be required to be of good character.

All applicants must have sufficient knowledge of English, Welsh or Scottish Gaelic.

All applicants must have sufficient knowledge of life in the UK.

All applicants must intend to make the UK their homeland.

The Secretary of State will have some powers of discretion  in deciding Citizenship applications.

Please contact us for help.

For current fees payable please see our Fees Scale page.

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