Why does it take so long before I get my visa after an appeal?
If the judge allows your appeal, his or her determination will be sent to the relevant visa section, which will in turn contact you.
It can take up to 4 weeks for determinations to reach the relevant visa section. This is because paper copies of the determination are sent to the visa section in question. Since these are despatched using the internal postal system (sometimes referred to as “diplomatic post”), it can take a while before the Determination reaches the visa section. Thus, whereas you or your sponsor may already have received your copy of the Determination, it is quite possible that the visa section has not received their copy yet. In fact, it is common for applicants to receive their copy before the visa section does. Without their copy of the determination, a visa section cannot issue your visa. Also, on receipt at the section, it can take a further 8 weeks for the determination to be processed. Please note that the visa section will write to you using the contact details provided on your appeal form. It is important therefore to notify the section if there has been a change in contact details since you submitted your appeal.
So what can I do?
Submit a service complaint
Because of the processing times (4 weeks for the determination to reach the section and 8 weeks for the processing at the section) UKBA recommends that you allow 12 weeks for the decision to be processed. This is 12 weeks from the date of “promulgation”, i.e. from the date the Judge allowed your appeal. You can find this date on your determination. If it takes longer, you may submit a service complaint to: UKBACustomerComplaints@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk
Please remember to include all relevant details (full name, date of birth, office where the application was submitted, date of application, date of promulgation, UKBA reference numbers). UKBA will normally send an auto reply confirming receipt. UKBA has 20 working days to reply to your enquiry. What they will do is contact the Entry Clearance Manager (ECM) in question to check on the status of your application. They will revert to you within 20 working days.
If you have a sponsor in the UK, he or she could contact his/her MP to ask if s/he can check on the status of your application. The MP will write to UKBA’s dedicated MP enquiry point, who will then contact the relevant ECM. As above, UKBA will revert within 20 working days.