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The Pre-Action Protocol (PAP) is a set of procedures that both parties are expected to follow before a formal judicial review claim is filed in court.

Starting a judicial review with a strong Pre-Action Protocol (PAP) letter is very important. PAP letter is more than just a formality. It explains why you're challenging, what you hope to achieve, and your legal points. It aims to open the door for negotiation, avoiding a long courtroom battle and associated costs.

Due to the complexity of the UK immigration law and judicial review process, it is highly recommended that individuals seeking judicial review consult with a specialist immigration solicitor.

To get help writing your Pre-Action Protocol Letter or help with your judicial review application, call our immigration solicitors in London at 0203 959 7755. Alternatively, fill in our online contact form.

Table of Contents

  1. What is the Pre-Action Protocol (PAP) letter for judicial review?
  2. What is the importance of a Pre-Action Protocol letter?
  3. What is judicial review in immigration cases?
  4. Steps in the Pre-Action Protocol for immigration judicial review
  5. What is the response time for the pre-action letter?
  6. What should be included in a pre-action letter?
  7. Seeking legal representation for judicial review
  8. How to contact Moeen & Co. Solicitors?
  9. FAQs: Pre-action protocol ('letter before claim')

What is the Pre-Action Protocol (PAP) letter for judicial review?

Before submitting a formal judicial review claim in the Court, the claimant must send a formal pre-action letter to the respondent (Home Office). This letter outlines the grounds for the challenge, the facts of the case, and the remedy sought.

Pre-Action Protocol (PAP) ensures both sides get a chance to discuss the immigration decision and maybe resolve issues without the need for a full judicial review hearing, thereby saving time and costs associated with court proceedings.

What is the importance of a Pre-Action Protocol letter?

A Pre-Action Protocol Letter to the Home Office is key in the legal process. It's the first step if you disagree with a Home Office decision. This letter lets you explain your reasons and ask for what you want. You also include your legal arguments.

The Pre-Action Protocol Letter aims to avoid going to court. It gives the Home Office a chance to look at its decision again. By pointing out the issues and your legal stance, you might not need to go to court.

A well-crafted Pre-Action Protocol Letter can significantly impact the outcome of your immigration judicial review. It sets the tone for the entire process, allowing you to clearly communicate your grievances, desired outcome, and potential legal arguments to the Home Office.

What is judicial review in immigration cases?

Judicial Review (JR) is a legal process through which the decisions of the Home Office (UKVI) can be challenged in court.

You can submit an application to the Upper Tribunal Immigration and Asylum Chamber (UTIAC) seeking permission for judicial review if you believe that a decision made by the Home Office was unlawful, unreasonable, or procedurally improper.

Steps in the Pre-Action Protocol for immigration judicial review

  • Letter Before Claim
  • Response by the Home Office (UKVI)
  • Considering the Response
  • Commencing Judicial Review

Letter Before Claim

The first step in the pre-action protocol is to send a 'Letter Before Claim' to the Home Office (UKVI) explaining why you believe that the immigration decision is unlawful.

The PAP letter should clearly identify the decision being challenged and indicate the response deadline (usually 14 days).

Response by the Home Office (UKVI)

Upon receiving the Letter Before Claim, the Home Office should acknowledge receipt of the PAP letter promptly and provide a substantive response within the given deadline.

Considering the Response

Once the response is received from the Home Office, you should carefully read and understand the response. If the Home Office agrees to reconsider the immigration decision, the need for judicial review may be eliminated.

Commencing Judicial Review

If the issue is not resolved during the pre-action protocol stage, then the next step is to formally start judicial review proceedings. Now you can apply to the Upper Tribunal Immigration and Asylum Chamber (UTIAC) for a judicial review to challenge a visa or immigration decision by the Home Office.

What is the response time for the pre-action letter?

The standard expectation is that the Home Office should respond to the pre-action letter (sometimes known as a 'Letter Before Claim') within 14 days. This period is meant to provide the Home Office with enough time to review the claim, gather necessary documents, and formulate a response.

What should be included in a pre-action letter?

A good pre-action letter should include several important parts:

  • Clear and concise statement of the legal basis: Start by saying why you think the Home Office is wrong. Use laws and rules to back up your point.
  • Summary of relevant facts: Tell a short story about your immigration issue. Mention dates and events that help your case. Keep it all organised.
  • Supporting evidence: Include any documents that help prove your point. This could be letters, statements, or expert advice. Everything must be true and useful for your case.
  • Identification of procedural flaws: Point out any mistakes the Home Office made in your case. Explain how these mistakes hurt your rights. Back up your argument with laws.
  • Proposed remedies or settlement options: Suggest ways to resolve the issue. This could be asking for a new decision or offering other solutions. Be open to settling the issue.

If you need help with your pre-action protocol letter or want an immigration solicitor for your judicial review, contact Moeen & Co. Solicitors by calling 0203 959 7755 or filling in an online contact form.

At Moeen & Co. Solicitors, we understand the process and can give you the best chance with your pre-action letter to the Home Office. We make sure your letter covers everything it should.

We'll also guide you on when to send the letter. It's important not to miss the deadline. We make sure the letter arrives on time, avoiding any issues.

Having a solicitor with you is very helpful when you receive a response from the Home Office. We'll go through their response with you and explain what comes next.

Hiring Moeen & Co. Solicitors can improve your chances in a judicial review. Our deep knowledge of immigration law and experience in these types of cases can benefit you greatly throughout the process.

Why choose Moeen & Co. Solicitors?

  • Expertise: Our solicitors specialise in UK immigration law and have a deep understanding of the complexities involved in the judicial review application process.
  • Experience: With years of experience, our team of immigration solicitors in London have successfully handled numerous judicial review cases.
  • Professional Guidance: Our immigration solicitors will guide you step-by-step through the judicial review application process, ensuring that you understand your rights and obligations.
  • Commitment to Success: We are dedicated to achieving the best possible outcome for your judicial review claim, utilising our expertise to present a strong and compelling case.

How to contact Moeen & Co. Solicitors?

Call Moeen & Co. Solicitors today at 0203 959 7755 for a consultation. Let's see how we can support you with your letter before claim and judicial review.

There are several ways to contact our team of immigration solicitors based in Hayes, London:

We are located near Hayes and Harlington Station on Hayes High Street, in Hayes Town Centre. 

Feel free to contact Moeen & Co. Solicitors, if you need legal advice or assistance with drafting your pre-action letter and judicial review application. We're here to help you in person, via the phone or online.

FAQs: Pre-action protocol ('letter before claim')

Yes, the deadline can be extended. Extensions may be necessary if more time is needed to gather information, consider a response, or attempt further negotiations.

Failure to follow the Pre-Action Protocol can result in court-imposed penalties, usually related to legal costs. For example, a court may order the party that did not comply with the protocol to pay the other party's legal costs, or it may impact the outcome of the case.

While it's not mandatory to have legal representation, it is highly advisable. Immigration law and judicial review procedures can be complex, and having an experienced solicitor can help ensure that all protocol steps are properly followed and that the case is presented effectively.

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If you need legal advice or assistance with your legal matter, speak to our lawyer today.