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This just in from the marvellous BritCits:

Furthermore, you have provided a detailed covering letter explaining why you qualify for an EEA Family Permit under Regulation 9. You have quoted case law and the rules concerning how long someone can work in a member state and qualify under Regulation 9. It is clear from this letter that you and your British spouse have gone to extensive lengths to understand fully Regulation 9 of the EEA Regulations which suggests that your reason for living in the France is merely to qualify under the Surinder Singh provision and to circumvent the Settlement procedure.

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Until 2008 children who resided in the UK for seven years would permitted to remain under a Home Office policy called DP5/96, as would their parents. There were certain public interest ‘escape’ clauses for the Home Office – if the parents had deliberately gone to ground, committed offences or similar – but most applications under this policy would succeed. Seven years was recognised as an important if arbitrary period of residence for children by the previous President of the Upper Tribunal in EM (Zimbabwe) CG [2011] UKUT 98 (IAC) and continued to be recognised in other cases including Azimi-Moayed and others (decisions affecting children; onward appeals) [2013] UKUT 197 (IAC). When the Immigration Rules were changed in July 2012 (Statement of Changes HC 194), seven years of residence by a child was formally incorporated into the rules as a sufficient period to justify continued residence by the child and parents. The explanatory notes accompanying that particular change (paragraph 7.6) stated that:

The key test for a non-British citizen child remaining on a permanent basis is the length of residence in the UK of the child – which the rules set at at least the last seven years, subject to countervailing factors.

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So, with the Scottish referendum result out of the way the UK Government has taken the opportunity to extend UK immigration law enforcement powers in Scotland with the commencement of a long dormant power of detention and accompanying criminal offence. The disgraceful timing cannot possibly be accidental; this law was passed five years ago.

Also in the same commencement order is the bringing into effect of an apparently abandoned citizenship provision from Labour’s awful planned nationality reforms from 2009. You may remember the concept of “earned citizenship” and those who undertook voluntary work being rewarded with British citizenship sooner than those who declined. Well, the power to make implementing regulations comes into effect on 27 October 2014. There were no announcement at the Conservative Party conference, but might this mean that new ministers are re-visiting the proposals now or are planning something for the election campaign?

Banksy immigration mural

So Banksy’s new immigration themed mural in Clacton — where Douglas Carswell has resigned as Conservative MP to stand in a by election for UKIP — has been destroyed by the local council before anyone else even knew it was there on the grounds that it was “offensive” and “racist”.

Stop the world, I want to get off now please.

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In the case of Nwaigwe (adjournment: fairness) [2014] UKUT 418 (IAC) the unnamed First-tier Tribunal judge had refused to adjourn a case. This was despite a letter from the appellant’s solicitors requesting a short adjournment on the grounds that the appellant was ill and stating that they had been unable to obtain evidence from the doctor or hospital “mainly to legal restraint under the Data Protection Act”. The appeal was dismissed but the appellant sought permission to appeal with a note saying that he had recently been diagnosed as diabetic and had been struggling with the medication. Continue Reading…

New country guidance case on Angola and Cabinda

The official headnote is quite long but you can get the gist from paragraph 2:

There is significant evidence of human rights abuses, including within Cabinda and affecting Cabindans, problems of arbitrary arrest and detention, ill-treatment in detention, poor prison conditions, restrictions on freedom of expression, government action against protest and limitations in the legal system and security laws.  However…

Also useful to be told that the 2003 country guidance case is now out of date. Thanks.

New Procedure Rules come into effect 20 October 2014

As predicted, the Tribunal Procedure (First-tier Tribunal) (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) Rules 2014 are official and come into effect on 20 October 2014. More analysis to follow in due course for Free Movement Members. Headline changes seem to me to be that:

  1. Costs can be awarded in the First-tier Tribunal and therefore also the Upper Tribunal Immigration and Asylum Chambers, but only in fairly limited circumstances and not as a matter of routine (rule 9).
  2. Appeals may continue even where a decision is withdrawn by the Home Office (rule 17(2)). Leave a comment if you spot anything else interesting.
  3. The Home Office no longer gets notification of asylum decisions before the asylum seeker (rule 29).

It has been thought that the new appeal provisions would come into effect at the same time as the new rules. There is no sign of a commencement order to that effect yet, but keep your eyes peeled!

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It tickles me that UKIP plan to scrap the EU agreement that permits the UK to return asylum seekers to other EU countries without considering their asylum claim. As it stands, this EU agreement, often referred to as the Dublin Convention or Dublin Regulation (not Treaty as UKIP seem to think), substantially reduces the number of asylum claims made in the UK. UKIP’s proposal is therefore perhaps the perfect example of a policy that would have the opposite effect to that intended.

It is also an ideal illustration of the problems with reciprocity the UK would face if seeking to withdraw from the European Union. Continue Reading…

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“It is noted that your former partner was born and raised in Jamaica. It is therefore considered that the children you have with her have Jamaican heritage and there would be nothing unduly harsh about them being raised within their own inherited culture.”Home Office civil servant, August 2014

I’ve left out the names. There were two children and both were born in Britain as British citizens. They can “go home” where they belong, though, as far as this civil servant is concerned.

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