Pre-Action Protocol Letter to the Home Office for Delays to Immigration Applications

Before embarking on a Judicial Review claim it is vital that you give the Home Office an opportunity to respond to your complaints. Here we explain what a Pre-Action Protocol letter is

If you have already gone through the previous steps, you may want to consider seeking advice about taking legal action against the Home Office, although generally this is only seen as a last resort.

This is step 5 in the process of How To Complain About Home Office Delays in Deciding Visa & Immigration Applications. You must make sure you tried and exhausted steps 1 to 4 before embarking on this step. At this stage, we would strongly recommend that you seek our expert advice before going further.

The first legal step is filing a pre-action protocol letter (PAP)on the Home Office. This is a legal document and it is crucial that it is prepared by a lawyer. It is very unlikely that you will be able to write an effective PAP without legal knowledge.

Solicitors will be able to advise you on whether there is a benefit in following the PAP process; you would need to show that the Home Office has unreasonably failed to act in relation to your immigration matter, which has resulted in a disadvantage such as losing work or damage to your health. It is vital to show evidence of the steps you have already taken to obtain a decision, including evidence of prior communications with the Home Office, which may include phone calls, emails, or letters.

If the Home Office does not respond within 21 days of receiving the Pre-Action Protocol Letter, you will be able to lodge a judicial review with the High Court. In an emergency we might require them to respond sooner than 21 days. It depends on the circumstances of your case.

Depending on what happens and what response the Home Office provide, your next step might be an application for Judicial Review. But the realistic chances of a successful Judicial Review depend very much on the strengths and merits of your case. We will be able to advise you what these are and whether you can take the next step – an application for Judicial Review.

follow each of these steps, starting from the first, in order. It is important that you take these steps when complaining about the Home Office:

  1. My Visa Application is Delayed – What Can I Do?
  2. Home Office Compensation for Delays in Processing Visa & Immigration Applications
  3. How to Chase a Delayed UK Visa & Immigration Application
  4. Contact UK Visas and Immigration for Assistance
  5. Complain about UKVI
  6. Contact your local MP
  7. Complain to Parliamentary and health Service Ombudsman
  8. Pre-Action Protocol Letter
  9. Judicial Review