Ask a Brazilian: UK Visa Issues
July 15, 2009
This is our regular column called "Ask a Brazilian", the idea being that you can quite literally ask a question of a Brazilian - for those issues you aren't sure about but perhaps dare not ask someone else. It is meant as a bit of fun and answers should not be construed as expert opinion or the definitive reply on the matter. For that reason we ask you to please send your own comments and experiences in order to add to our replies.
My friend whom I met on the Internet (we have video called every day for 3 months) came to the UK at my expense, but she was refused entry on the following grounds: her personal circumstances (mother and daughter recently deceased in car crash), lost her job due to the stress from aforementioned accident, had little funds on her as I had invited her here and was going to support her during her 7 weeks stay, had no house in Brazil (as it was in her mothers name, BUT is still where she lives) - UK Immigration believed she had no reason to return to Brazil as there was nothing for her back home in Brazil, even though she had me as a sponsor and a return ticket, they sent her back home as a criminal (taking her pictures and photographs).
I plan to go to Rio now in September and we plan to seek a Visa for her to come to the UK in December. Can you advise of the best course of action? Is there an easier country than Portugal to come to the UK, how easy is it to get a Visa for the UK, should we get engaged when I go to Rio, should the length of stay be shorter than the intended 7 weeks she planned in July?
Sounds like a difficult situation.
Entry to the UK via any country will make little difference if your friends passport is inspected, particularly now that she has a record of entry refusal.
As she has discovered, UK border control will be looking for evidence of means of support e.g. funds, credit card(s), along with evidence that the individual plans to return i.e. a return ticket. If the individual has neither of these there is a strong chance they will be refused entry, which happens to thousands of Brazilians a year purportedly.
It will help to have a letter from a sponsor, with contact details if she is stopped, but this is unlikely to be sufficient evidence alone, bearing in mind the above.
As you have already mentioned, you are best now to arrange a meeting at a UK Consulate so that she can try and apply for a tourist visa. Your presence and sponsorship may well help, but again the visa is likely to be issued based on the above evidence.
I am unsure whether being engaged will help, and without wishing to be too moral, my advice would first to be sure that you are getting engaged to the right person by spending a significant amount of time with them. Be wary of making decisions while in the throes of love!
Best of luck!
Are there any burning questions you have about Brazil, or other issues that you're curious about, such as Brazilian culture? If so, send your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org with "Ask a Brazilian" in the subject. We will forward to our Brazilian experts, and publish the best questions (and replies) on the site.
Previous articles in this series:
Ask a Brazilian: Dating in Brazil
Ask a Brazilian: Gossip
Ask a Brazilian: A Question of Race
Ask a Brazilian: Real Estate Scam
Ask a Brazilian: Corruption and Lula
Ask a Brazilian: Lacking Change and I Touch Myself
Ask a Brazilian: Leather and Telephones
Ask a Brazilian: Tampons
Ask a Brazilian: Treatment of Animals
Ask a Brazilian: A Brazilian CV
Ask a Brazilian: Well-to-do Ladies
Ask a Brazilian: Gender Stereotypes
Ask a Brazilian: All Souls Day and Halloween
Ask a Brazilian: Answering a Question
Ask a Brazilian: Revoked Visa
Ask a Brazilian: Pedestrian Problems
Ask a Brazilian: Trash
Ask a Brazilian: Tiles
Ask a Brazilian: Headlights
Ask a Brazilian: Differences and Love
Ask a Brazilian: What Do the Police Do?
Ask a Brazilian: Contractor Frustrations
Ask a Brazilian: English Books and Brazilian Boys
Ask a Brazilian: Cold Caçhaca
Ask a Brazilian: Interruptions
Ask a Brazilian: Travel and Security Concerns
Ask a Brazilian: Gestures and Toys
Ask a Brazilian: Hispanics or Latinos, and Duvets
Ask a Brazilian: Overbearing Sogros
Ask a Brazilian: Hotels and Bank Transfers
Ask a Brazilian: Swimming, Showers and New Years
Ask a Brazilian: Making Friends
Ask a Brazilian: Female Etiquette
Ask a Brazilian: Washing Machines
Ask a Brazilian: Picking Teeth
Ask a Brazilian: Lozenge or Candy?
Ask a Brazilian: Liberal or Jealous?
Ask a Brazilian: Truck Wheels
Ask a Brazilian: Tolerance
Ask a Brazilian: Screens
Ask a Brazilian: Brazilian Wax
Ask a Brazilian: Flashing Lights
Ask a Brazilian: Lemon and Limes
Ask a Brazilian: Shocking Showers