Our client was a Lebanese national called Farah. Farah had married her British-Lebanese husband, Imad, in Lebanon in 2018. She had been in a relationship with Imad for a while, and everything continued to go well following the wedding, so when Imad suggested Farah obtain a UK visit visa to spend some time with him in London, she had no hesitation. Farah came to the UK as a visitor in late 2018.
However, on Farah’s arrival in London Imad almost immediately started to behave abusively. She had not experienced any such behaviour from him before. Suddenly dominant and intimidating, Imad subjected Farah to physical violence and verbal abuse. He constantly berated her, threatened her, and swore at her, and on occasion he physically prevented Farah from leaving the house.
Unable to work in the UK on her visit visa, Farah had trusted that Imad would take care of the couple’s finances. She’d given him over £1,000 that she’d brought with her from Lebanon, which he said he needed to pay a solicitor to sort out Farah’s immigration status. It later turned out there had been no solicitor, and no effort was made to secure Farah’s status in the UK.
Imad repeatedly threatened to have Farah sent back to Lebanon without her two young daughters. What’s more, he made clear that if Farah tried to leave him and return to Lebanon with their daughters, he would do all he could to keep the girls in the UK with him. Farah believed there was a good chance he would succeed.
Trapped and isolated, Farah became increasingly depressed, anxious and desperate. It was at this point that Farah approached Truth Legal for help with her immigration status.
Truth Legal quickly identified that Farah needed to apply for leave to remain in the UK as the parent of her daughters, who had British citizenship from birth through Imad. But the application would cost £000s, and thanks to Imad, Farah had no financial resources of her own.
Truth Legal helped Farah apply for a fee waiver, a notoriously difficult application to make. Solicitors gathered evidence of Farah’s perilous financial situation, including reports from charities and statements from her elderly parents in Lebanon. When the fee waiver was granted, it was the first time Farah’s solicitor heard her cry tears of joy, not sorrow.
Truth Legal next went on to apply for Farah’s leave to remain. Again, her solicitors gathered extensive evidence including police reports, evidence from social services, and evidence of the hardships facing single mothers in Lebanon. After a long and anxious wait, Farah was finally granted leave to remain. Truth Legal was even successful in securing access to public funds, without which Farah could not support her young daughters.
Thanks to Truth Legal, Farah has escaped Imad’s abuse and control without being separated from her daughters. Farah has attended classes to improve her English, and she wants to find work as soon as she can. Most importantly, she is free to raise her British daughters, whose best interests are undoubtedly served by staying with their mother in the UK, the country of their birth.
If you have a complex immigration matter you’d like to discuss with our team of experts, contact us today.