On 18 February 2013 I sent in a complaint to the UKBA via email to UKBACust1568@homeoffice.gsi.gov.uk. I finally heard back last weekend. Let’s just say it’s another department at the UKBA that seems to be utterly useless. Here is my response to them.
To Whom it May Concern,
Your response to my complaint email of 18 February 2013 is absolutely unacceptable.
Firstly, I had been informed by someone (of course no names were given) who responded to my call to 0870 606 7766 that I would hear back within 10 days. The email auto-response I received said it would be 20 days. Your letter is dated 17 April 2013. Your agency does understand that my life is essentially on hold until this is decided? Every delay causes issues to applicants.
Secondly, key information is missing from the letter regarding my case – an entire application was left of the timeline summarised in the letter. Does it change your response? Not really. But it does show how little attention has been given to my application overall.
I draw your attention to the third paragraph of the letter you sent (I trust you have retained a copy for your records) in which you admit that the letter I was sent in response to my first application contained erroneous detail – to wit that the payment details had not been provided (which they had) and that rather it should have said that the agency was unable to draw payment. The final line of this paragraph is “I apologise for the confusion that this may have caused you.”
You apologise for the confusion? Seriously? The “confusion” that this has caused me is a rejection of my application and I am now facing deportation. The extent to which your agency is trying to downplay this is insulting.
Finally, I would like an explanation as to why your agency does not simply request an alternative form of payment when they are unable to take payment with the details provided. The funds were definitely in my account. Was it possible that my bank disallowed a payment that size? Possibly. But because I had no idea that the UKBA had failed a payment attempt and there was no record of it on my bank statements, how was I to know?
Further, had I gone into your offices to process my application and my payment had failed, would you have just said “sorry, that’s it, you’ve been rejected”? Of course not, that’s ridiculous. You would have asked for a second form of payment. Why are those applying by post being punished in this way?
Rushanara Ali, my MP, has written to both the UKBA and the Home Office on my behalf because of how my application has been handled. I have also applied to appeal the decision at the First-Level Tribunal. I was hoping that it would not have to come to that, but based on how my application has been handled since the beginning and now how my complaint has been treated, I cannot see any other course of action.
I have also sent in a letter and all supporting documentation to the “case worker” who refused my application. He’s not responded, naturally. I would have attached the documentation for your convenience, but your systems will not allow a file that size. I hope that you will be able to access it via your internal systems and perhaps someone at a higher level within the agency will be able to look at this situation more reasonably.