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I'm applying to a UK Standard Visitor visa to attend an interview at Brighton University. I have a French student visa refusal from four years ago.

Will it affect the ECO's decision for this visa?

I didn't receive a letter for the reason of the refusal but here's what happened. I work in Saudi Arabia as a teacher. When I returned back to Lebanon from Saudi Arabia I brought with me all the money that I collected that year and put it in my father's account because I didn't have a bank account in Lebanon at that time. The officer that was interviewing me told me that my visa will be refused because I don't have evidence that this money is mine. I didn't know that I had to bring with me an employment letter and my Saudi bank statement. I did get refused as the officer told me.

Will the ECO contact the university on the number mentioned on their invitation letter to check if they did really invite me or not?

Will the ECO scan every page in my passport to check if I have any previous refusals stamped on my passport?

If he doesn't scan my passport for previous refusals, how can he know that I have one?

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You are applying for a Standard Visitor Visa in order to attend an interview at Brighton University, and you are stressed about your immigration history, namely a prior refusal from France.

Will it affect the ECO's decision for this visa?

Yes, of course it will. The ECO will look to see to what extent your personal circumstances have changed since then. The 'best practices' approach is to detail your changes of circumstances in two paragraphs MAX and put it in the remarks field. Any more than about two paragraphs they will ignore it as a rationalisation you are making.

Change of circumstances means a significant change in lifestyle, career, social position, economic position, and so on.

Will the ECO contact the university on the number mentioned on their invitation letter to check if they did really invite me or not?

They might if they have reason to suspect that your invitation is not genuine, nobody knows. If your invitation is genuine and posted by someone minimally at the associate professor level, then what the ECA's (assistants) do is totally irrelevant. Why care about it? My own experience is that they will not check if they can avoid it. If they do check, it's a bad sign. But again, you are powerless to affect the outcome hence what they do is irrelevant.

Will the ECO scan every page in my passport to check if I have any previous refusals stamped on my passport?

Not the ECO personally, but the ECA's will for sure. You are Lebanese and would know that some passport stamps in the middle East may invite problems. Once again you cannot affect the outcome and does it matter anyway? If you are candid and transparent what they do with your passport is irrelevant.

If he doesn't scan my passport for previous refusals, how can he know that I have one?

Your biometrics will provide them with a unified record and timeline. I hope you are aware of this and disclose everything on the form.

  • The only problem back then was the sudden deposit I made in my father's account. Now I'm submitting the visa from Saudi Arabia. I have my own bank account and I provided a bank statement with a balance of 16500 pounds and showing my salary deposit each month, a letter from my employer, my residency card , the invitation letter sent to me by the university, and exit re-entry visa to Saudi Arabia. Doesn't this mean that my circumstances did change? – Ibrahim Dec 16 '16 at 14:07
  • Yes, those points are useful when assembled in a tactful way. – Gayot Fow Dec 16 '16 at 14:26
  • Oh Ok. Would you please help me write the paragraphs? I'd really appreciate that. – Ibrahim Dec 16 '16 at 14:49
  • @Zizo I am not in practice any more. so doing that would violate Section 84 of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999, it means the answer is no. Emphatically. – Gayot Fow Dec 16 '16 at 15:14
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    Thank you very much for your comments .. I got the visa :) – Ibrahim Jan 10 '17 at 15:29

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