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Student Union takes third party legal action in London Met UK Border Agency case | Immigration Matters

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As London Metropolitan University launch its bid for a Judicial Review against the UK Border Agency’s decision to revoke its Tier 4 Sponsors Licence to recruit non-EU students, the National Union of Students (NUS) is taking third party legal action on behalf of the students at university threatened with deportation.

The Times reports that the NUS has instructed law firm Bindmans to file a third party intervention in the London Met case on its behalf, as well as act as an independent expert in the case.

London Met has filed for judicial review and its legal team will be at the High Court in London later today to block the UK Border Agency’s revocation the university’s status as a highly trusted sponsor (HTS) for international student visas.

The UKBA claims London Met failed to take action to address “serious, systemic problems” identified by an audit six months ago, which meant it could not guarantee its students were not in the UK illegally.

London Met’s application for interim relief is expected to be heard by the High Court on 21 September and should it be successful this will put a hold the proceedings with regards to London Met’s highly trusted status, and ring fence 2,600 who would otherwise see their student visa cancelled.

Should their legal bid fail in court, around 2,600 students from outside the UK could find themselves being ordered to ‘get out’ of the UK as early as the start of December unless they can find a course at another university and secure a new Tier 4 student visa.

Further leave to remain as a student is only granted where a student qualifies all over again, and obtaining a visa by no means a formality.

Liam Burns, president of the National Union of Students, said: “We are concerned that the needs and interests of students are represented in this case, and our independent intervention will look to ensure that voice is heard in the legal proceedings.”

He added: “As this is the first time that the government has revoked the sponsor status of a public institution, we are in uncharted territory, and this case will set important precedents for the future treatment of both domestic and international students.”

Saadia Khan, a solicitor at Bindmans said: “The court will decide if NUS can intervene in the proceedings brought by London Met – doing so will enable the students’ perspective to be heard by the court.” Source: The Times.

BBC Radio 4’ ‘The Report’ programme examines the Government’s claim that the UKBA found ‘systemic failings in the way the university managed its records’ many students who did not have permission to study in the UK or the level of English language or academic qualifications to follow their courses.

The UKBA also claimed that there was insufficient evidence students were attending their courses.

Wesley Stephenson asks why the licence was revoked. Has London Met been lax in its recruitment and monitoring of students, or has it fallen victim of a hugely complicated visa and compliance system? Why did the UKBA act now? Was there overwhelming evidence of systemic failings, or was there political pressure to take tough action?

Listen to The Report.

See also:

Universities Minister demands end to student visa cuts

Overseas students could be separated from net migration figures

Student immigration clampdowns putting millions ‘at risk’ says University head

Two more UK universities temporarily banned from enrolling overseas students, Minster confirms

London Metropolitan University’s licence to sponsor international students revoked

UKBA publish information for students at London Metropolitan University

London Metropolitan University’s Tier 4 Sponsors licence to be revoked by UKBA

Private Tier 4 sponsoring colleges sacrificed in immigration cull

Overseas students trapped in UK visa delays

New visa rules for overseas students ‘will cost billions’ say Universities UK

UKBA confirm changes to the Immigration Rules which start on 6 April 2012

Overseas students should be excluded from UK net migration figures, say MPs

If you need any immigration advice or are worried about the new immigration rules or need help with Sponsorship or Tier 2, Tier 4, applying for university if your college has closed down, Visa, ILR, Settlement, Citizenship, Dependant Visa or an appeal against a UK Border Agency or British Embassy refusal, or if you have been waiting for a reply from the Home Office for longer than a year, please email: or visit for free immigration news updates.

Majestic College offer special packages for EU students. They also have a number of employers looking for staff right now and are willing to employ Bulgarians and Romanians.

For more information call Joanna on 0208 207 1020 or email

Overseas students and workers can qualify for a tax refund 

You could qualify for a tax refund if you are an overseas student, work permit holder, Tier 1, Yellow or Blue Card holder – in fact any visa type – even if you are no longer legal or even in the UK!


It doesn’t matter where you come from – UK, Europe or anywhere else in the world, it is important to ensure that your qualifications are recognised. In the UK there is a national agency that carries out this service, they are called UK NARIC.

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