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My visa got denied by the Greek embassy in Abu Dhabi for the reason below: the information submitted regarding the justification for the purpose and conditions of the intended stay was not reliable.

Does it make sense to appeal for this?

I have no idea why they denied my application while my friend got hers. We applied together and submitted the same documents, booked hotels and tickets. My purpose is a tour for 6 days.

Here are the documents I submitted:

  1. Schengen visa application form (Greece)
  2. copy of my passport recently renewed valid from 16/05/2015 to 15/15/2017
  3. copy of my UAE visa valid 2017/05/13
  4. 3.5 x4cm photo in white background
  5. RSA travel insurance with a coverage of Euro 30,000 from 02/10/2015 to 10/10/2015
  6. 6months NBD bank account statement with a nice balance (original with bank stamp)
  7. No-objection letter from my employee stating my position, salary, date of my recruitment.
  8. Booked hotel & ticket fares with itinerary details
  • Could you add what documentation you provided and what the reason for travelling was? – DCTLib Aug 13 '15 at 13:11
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    possible duplicate of Schengen visa refused from German embassy – Gagravarr Aug 13 '15 at 13:12
  • @Gagravarr I tend to disagree. The other question refers to a different reason for refusal and the answer is specific to that reason. – DCTLib Aug 13 '15 at 13:15
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    @GayotFow We need a canonical visa refusal question. – JoErNanO Aug 13 '15 at 13:48
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    @Gagravarr and others: The other question does provide a lot of relevant material on the decision process and on the information that could be submitted but not really on the appeals vs. fresh application or appeal vs. no appeal decision. – Relaxed Aug 13 '15 at 14:10
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In general, it does not make sense to appeal for something like that.

Whether an appeal is likely to succeed depends on the specifics of your situation and it's not a good idea to discuss all this on this site. You would need help from a Greek legal professional (which is presumably neither cheap nor easy to get from Abu Dhabi) to get an informed opinion about this.

But even if you have solid grounds for an appeal, it can take a (very) long time and it's impossible to do without knowing the local language and legal system (that's always true but the letter you received even states as much in the last paragraph). Additionally, the letter also suggests that lodging an appeal by post without formally hiring a lawyer is simply not possible in Greece (it is in other Schengen countries), which makes any appeal more expensive than a fresh application, even if you know Greek and feel confident drafting it yourself.

So in practice you are not going to quickly get satisfaction and save your trip that way. You will only receive an answer several months from now, long after your bookings have expired and your holidays are over. At this point, there won't even be a valid premise for your application (it makes no sense to issue a visa for a trip supposed to take place in the past…) An appeal only really makes sense if you have strong legal arguments and no hope to succeed in another application (and of course for long-stay visas but that's another thing entirely).

Alternatively, you could still lodge a fresh application. Even taking the fees, documents, etc. into account it would still be much cheaper than an appeal and definitely quicker. But only do that if you think there is something you could add to make your case stronger (detailed itinerary, bookings, etc.) without making you look unreliable (don't make up a story), otherwise you risk getting a new refusal and damaging your credibility for the future.

  • Thanks for your quick answer What do you mean by don't make up a story? ; ) – mazen Aug 13 '15 at 14:24
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    @mazen Some people sometimes think inventing another purpose for their trip is a good idea. Say you said you wanted to visit a friend in a small town in Greece, got refused, and now discover you want to go to Athens and the Islands because that's what tourists do. Either things are valid purposes but making stuff up is dangerous and changing your story make it appear as if you are not genuine and ready to say anything to get a visa. – Relaxed Aug 13 '15 at 14:31
  • ic thanks for that my purpose is very true, only tour and celebrate ; ) – mazen Aug 13 '15 at 14:38
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The decision to make an appeal offers pros and cons. The 'pros' are obvious: there is a chance the refusal will be reversed and the issuing post will be instructed to provide the visa. Some of the 'cons' are not so obvious...

  • Appeals often attract a fee and it can be expensive. In the case of Switzerland for example, an appeal costs more than a fresh application;
  • Appeals take a long time for a decision to be handed down. This means that the original premise may no longer be valid. For example, an application to attend at trade show in three weeks time will no longer have a viable premise after that time, and if the appeal runs for twelve weeks then the refusal will be upheld.
  • Appeals are generally conducted by a ministry in the member state, so most of your important documents will need to be translated. It also means you will not be permitted to attend the hearing;
  • More importantly, you will not get to listen to the opposing arguments.

Remarks: Refusals can become emotive! A number of refused applicants see the appeal process as a way to 'clear their name'. This can (and often does) backfire when the appeal is dismissed. If the original decision is upheld, you will have lost time and money and matters will be worse. A safer and more expeditious way to 'clear your name' may lie in making a high-quality, well-founded fresh application.

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