We recently dealt with a Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) application, which was initially refused. The applicant's dependant partner was also refused, as a result. We sought a review, which was successful. However, the UK visa section overseas refused to review the case of the dependant on the grounds that his was not a points-based application, so review was not a remedy available to him.
This created a most peculiar and unfair result. The applicant's visa was granted, but the dependant was told he must reapply, even though there had been nothing wrong with his application and the initial refusal of the main applicant had been based on an error.
The initial application had been made abroad and the applicant and his dependant had to return to the place of application, the first to receive his visa stamp, the second to reapply. At the eleventh hour the authorities relented and allowed the dependant to receive his visa without reapplying, accepting that "forcing the dependant to re-apply, with the additional cost that this would entail, when the sole reason for refusal (the main applicant being refused) no longer exists is not in keeping with the concept of natural justice".
This was extremely good news, both for our clients and for the immigration system as a whole, demonstrating a real desire on the part of the UKBA to achieve a fair result. The decision potentially has implications for all PBS dependants where the main application is approved after review, although Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) dependants are in a stronger position as there is no maintenance requirement on initial application.