Top 100 law firm Russell-Cooke comments on the recent decision of the UK Border Agency (UKBA) to revoke London Metropolitan University's visa licence. 

The London university has had its right to sponsor students from outside of the EU revoked and will no longer be able to authorise visas.

According to The National Union of Students (NUS), this could mean more than 2,000 undergraduates being deported within 60 days, unless they find another institution to sponsor them.

Although there have been other recent suspensions, no other UK university has so far had its licence to sponsor overseas students revoked.

It is difficult to over-estimate the consequences of the UK Border Agency's decision for both London Metropolitan University and its sponsored international students. The university said on its website "The implications of the revocation are hugely significant and far-reaching."

Edward Wanambwa, partner and Head of the Immigration team at Russell-Cooke solicitors commented:

"Unless London Metropolitan University can very quickly overturn the decision in the High Court, it faces the prospect of being sued for tens of millions of pounds, not to mention having to repay some or all of the fees already paid by international students.  Such decisions can sometimes be challenged through judicial review proceedings or the threat of these.  Russell-Cooke has recently assisted one higher education institution who had the same action threatened against it to reverse the decision and are now working with another institution which is in the same position.

It seems quite likely, given the approach now being taken by the UKBA, that similar decisions will now be threatened or taken against other higher and further educational institutions in the near future. They therefore cannot be careful enough in ensuring full compliance with their sponsorship duties."

This news story has received a large amount of coverage in the UK media with Edward commenting in many of them. Please click on the respective link to read more; BBC News, Channel 4 News, The Independent and The Times.

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