There has been a very similar case asked around a year ago, in which the OP also had the case of their employer denying what was given to them — although the previous OP claims the submitted document to be fully original while you claim your visa agent had pasted signature and stamp onto it, which was effectively forging it. The details of what got you into the situation do not matter much as they are eight (or in the other OP’s case three) years ago; any opportunity to challenge the original decisions has long passed. What matters is that both refusals were given under paragraph 320(7A).
Our established contributor Gayot Fow, whom I have every reason to trust since their answers tend to be of very high quality, has noted in a (now deleted) comment that 320(7A) does not attract an automatic ten-year refusal period. Any ten-year ban would always be remarked directly on the refusal notice; a ‘silent ban’ does not exist. However, you might want to read up on the corresponding part of the immigration rules, most notably part 9. There you can not only find the original wording of paragraph 320(7A):
Grounds on which entry clearance or leave to enter the United Kingdom is to be refused
(7A) where false representations have been made or false documents or information have been submitted (whether or not material to the application, and whether or not to the applicant’s knowledge), or material facts have not been disclosed, in relation to the application or in order to obtain documents from the Secretary of State or a third party required in support of the application.
You can already see that they do not (and should not) care whether you knew that your documents had been forged or not, so your seemingly obvious route to have gone is moot (other rules that you can find on the corresponding pages state that there must be proof that basically comes down to the forging party admitting forgery to even have the slightest of chances).
Once you were refused by this paragraph once, any future applications may also be refused under the following paragraph 320(7B):
(7B) where the applicant has previously breached the UK’s immigration laws (and was 18 or over at the time of his most recent breach) by:
- (d) using Deception in an application for entry clearance, leave to enter or remain, or in order to obtain documents from the Secretary of State or a third party required in support of the application (whether successful or not);
unless the applicant:
- (ii) used Deception in an application for entry clearance more than 10 years ago;
Where more than one breach of the UK’s immigration laws has occurred, only the breach which leads to the longest period of absence from the UK will be relevant under this paragraph.
So while you may not have an official ten-year ban yet (as your refusal notice did not state so), unless something significant happens your applications will be practically automatically refused for the next ten years under 320(7B) anyway after you have been refused once under 320(7A). This is not a formal ban but that formal ban will come with your first refusal under 320(7B). (Thanks Gayot, for explaining this briefly in the chat room!) In short: You are not coming to the UK for ten years.
The answer to the question I have linked above also explains the possiblity how a ban may be lifted. In a nutshell it will require a solicitor (who will likely refuse to even represent you if they do not see any chance of ironing things out) and it will cost a five-digit sum of Pound sterling (courtesy to the estimate given in the linked answer).
Still, you might argue that you are applying for a visitor visa now and that these are handled in a different part of the immigration rules, namely appendix V. But you are still out of luck because there is a paragraph in there that reads:
Breaches of UK immigration laws
V 3.7 An application, except an application for an extension of stay as a visitor, will be refused if:
- (a) the applicant previously breached UK immigration laws as described at V 3.9; and
- (b) the application is made within the relevant re-entry ban time period in V 3.10 (which time period is relevant will depend on the manner in which the applicant left the UK).
The relevant section of V 3.9 is:
V 3.9 An applicant, when aged 18 years or over, breached the UK’s immigration laws:
- (d) if deception was used in relation to an application or documents used in support of an application (whether successful or not).
V 3.10 The duration of a re-entry ban is as follows:
- (f) 10 years — used deception in an application for entry clearance (including a visit visa).
In short, you are doomed and should wait at least until 2019.
Finally note that I have not gone through the trouble of checking this, but it seems that a standard visitor visa may even be the wrong type of visa for what you intend to do in the UK. Whatever you do, make sure you use a trustworthy agent and be extremely sure to select the right type of visa or the only thing your application will do is open the gates to hell even more.