What can I do if my visa is rejected?
If you have applied for a visa, and it gets rejected, you are able to submit an appeal. You have 10 working days to submit an appeal after receiving your rejection.
Where can I submit my appeal?
If you’re submitting this appeal in South Africa, it must be submitted at the VFS office. Since time is a limiting factor here, you will need to book your appointment rather urgently. If you are submitting overseas, then you can also appeal overseas at the South African mission.
How do I draft my visa appeal?
You need to carefully look at your rejection reason. Unfortunately, the Department of Home Affairs seldom writes rejection letters that are legally compliant or correct, and often just make general statements that do not fully apply to your application.
Using their reason for rejection, which often does not apply to your application, you can appeal the rejection and re-emphasise that you do qualify for your visa.
It is crucial that these letters of appeal are worded correctly. We at IBN Immigration Solutions have decades of experience in the matter and are happy to assist you with your appeal letters and subsequent follow-ups. With your letter, you must attach your proof of application and any other relevant documents so that they can adjudicate the original rejection decision to see if it was false. Unfortunately, the appeal process can take as long as 4 to 5 months to process.
What appeal am I submitting?
When using the VFS website, it will ask you what type of appeal you will be submitting. Up to this point, we have been discussing an appeal based on Section 8.4. This appeal goes to the Director General. If a Section 8.4 appeal comes back and they confirm the rejection was correct, you lose your appeal.
You can then appeal that decision. You again have 10 working days to appeal, and this time the appeal goes to the Minister’s office. In our experience, when the appeal reaches this stage, many nonsensical application rejections seem to be rectified.
Why can’t I go directly to court?
While you can do that, there is a principle in law that the court doesn’t want to replace their judgment with a decision of the executive, meaning they will usually ask you to first follow up on all potential remedies within the Immigration Act: the steps previously discussed. You can go to court, but only after the appeal process has proved unsuccessful.
From what we are recently seeing from the Department of Home Affairs, we are expecting a high number of rejections and subsequent appeals.
IBN Immigration Solutions has assisted numerous clients in immigration to South Africa and would love to assist you too! We are familiar with all the requirements for applications, possible red-flags, and hold-ups with the government’s immigration department, meaning that you’ll be in safe hands.
Make your immigration journey an easy one; reach out to us today!
Written by Andreas Krensel
Edited by Simon Carletti
At IBN Immigration Solutions, we believe in transparency and abide by Google’s rules. Please note that we are a privately-owned immigration practice and fully comply with the Immigration Act of South Africa, with registration number 1998/008448/07. We offer our expertise in successfully applying for temporary and permanent residency services, for which we charge a fee. While forms required for the process can be obtained for free at any Department of Home Affairs office, we provide them as part of our service. It’s important to note that we are not affiliated with the South African Government, but we do provide a valuable service to those seeking to immigrate to South Africa. Users who prefer to deal directly with the Department of Home Affairs can contact them at http://www.dha.gov.za/