I have been working in Portugal for more than 3 years now. My mother applied for a friend/family vist Schengen visa to visit me and my wife in Portugal since we are expecting a child. However, the Portuguese embassy in Pakistan denied the visa stating the following reason:

Your intention to leave the territory of the Member States before the expiry of the visa could not be ascertained.

My mother retired from her job in January 2018 and she is a housewife now. She mentioned it in her visa application. However, I assume the embassy is of the view that my mother may not return once granted the visa. Although, she does not have any such intention.

Now, we want to appeal the decision. Can anyone help us what we should do to prove the embassy that my mother will return back after the visit. My mother is not working now but I have my whole family back home (my father, sisters) so she will never stay more than the allocated days.

How should I proceed in this situation?

Thank you.

  • 2
    Can you post an image of the refusal letter, with any personal information redacted? There are often some phrases that are used along with the reason you quote that can give clues as to how your application went wrong. See this question and this question, for example (and note the slight change in phrasing between them.) Commented Jun 7, 2018 at 18:02
  • Thanks @MichaelSeifert the exact wording is as follows "Your intention to leave the territory of the member states before the expiry of the visa could not be ascertained" Commented Jun 7, 2018 at 18:17
  • Are you or your wife Portuguese or a citizen of another EU country?
    – phoog
    Commented Jun 8, 2018 at 21:27
  • 2
    @MichaelSeifert Schengen refusals take the form of a checklist. They are not as informative as UK refusals. In particular they do not include any account of the reasoning used to reach the decision.
    – phoog
    Commented Jun 8, 2018 at 21:28

3 Answers 3


It is usually not worth appealing. Instead, you can reapply with more information about how your mother supports herself or who financially supports her, and more evidence showing her home links.

For example, if her husband is still working, or if they live on his pension, did you supply information about that? If her husband is remaining at home while she travels, that would be normally considered a strong reason for her to return.


Appeals are generally limited to considering whether the decision was correct based on the information available to the original decision maker. It is therefore usually not possible to introduce new evidence on appeal.

Therefore, your appeal is likely to be unsuccessful. Instead, you should reapply, following the advice in nkjt's answer to develop a stronger application.


General advice for this kind of refusal is to try to address the reason by changing something about your life (get a job, go to college, etc) . This will be quite difficult in this case as the applicant is retired and that's not likely to change.

Given it is important to you to have the extra family around for the new baby, it is likely to be worth finding a lawyer in Portugal who is experienced in immigration law and pay them to help you appeal.

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