Since 12 November 2015, applicants who submit their application for consideration via the Premium Service Centre, can only now submit applications online, as the paper application form will be removed from the gov.uk website. The completed online application must be send off to the Home Office afterwards.
The above will also apply to Tier 2 Dependants, the paper form will be removed and substituted by the online service. In respect of Tier 1 and Tier 5 dependants, the paper format application will remain as it was.
The case Mandalia v Secretary of State for the Home Department  UKSC 59 can be pivotal example in regards to whether the Presenting Officer has a duty to apply evidential flexibility or it is just a mere power. In this case, the Court of Appeal said: “power”, however, the Supreme Court said: “a duty”.
From August 2009, evidential flexibility was embraced, which allows applicants to repair the deficit in their evidence or correct minor errors in applications for Tier 1, 2, 4 and 5 main and dependent applicants.
The flexible process instruction falls into 19 steps, four of which relevant to the above mentioned case, which the caseworker has to undertake when there is missing evidence or minor errors in the application:
It was held that the Home Office’s refusal was unlawful as there was not any attempt firstly to invite Mr Mandalia to correct minor error specifically to repair the deficit in his evidence. Therefore, the court should allow this appeal, and annul the refusal of Mr Mandalia’s application.
From this year, entry clearance applicants will be issued a Biometric Residence Permit, which must usually be collected within 10 days of arrival in the United Kingdom.
Individuals applying for Naturalisation as a British Citizen, an EEA Residence Card and EEA Permanent Residence must also now have their biometrics taken. The biometrics will be used to issue a biometric card as a form of UK visa.