All Articles: Asylum

Major court win for trafficking victims as subsistence payment cut is reversed

In a robust judgment yesterday, the High Court found the decision of the Home Office to cut weekly benefits to asylum-seeking victims of trafficking was unlawful. The rate was previously set at £65 per week and was dramatically cut by 42% from 1 Ma ...

9th November 2018 By

Refugee “safe return reviews” needlessly causing anxiety, statistics suggest

About 18 months ago, the Home Office announced that refugees would no longer get indefinite leave to remain automatically after being in the UK for five years. Officials are now supposed to review whether the refugee still needs the protection of the ...

23rd October 2018 By

Home Office CAN speak to your persecutor without asking you

So says the Upper Tribunal in PA (Protection claim, Respondent’s enquiries, Bias) [2018] UKUT 337 (IAC); at least if your confidentiality is preserved. Officials checked Bangladeshi police records for evidence of persecution PA, a Bangladeshi na ...

22nd October 2018 By

Court of Appeal says statelessness must be proved on balance of probabilities

In AS (Guinea) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] EWCA Civ 2234, the Court of Appeal has in effect rebuffed an attempt by the UN High Commissioner for Refugees to make it easier to establish statelessness. The court ruled that the sta ...

19th October 2018 By

New statement of changes to the Immigration Rules: HC 1534

A new statement of changes to the Immigration Rules was laid yesterday, 10 October. There is some very welcome news, including more flexibility given to caseworkers on whether and when they can write to applicants to ask for missing documents. (Wheth ...

12th October 2018 By

Help Refugees judgment: too little, too late for Calais children?

This is the second of two Court of Appeal cases this year about whether the Home Office behaved unlawfully towards vulnerable child asylum seekers during and after the demolition of the Calais refugee camp in 2016. The first appeal, R (Citizens UK) v ...

5th October 2018 By

Losing subsidiary protection because of “serious crime”

In C-369/17 Ahmed, the Court of Justice of the European Union has held that member states must take account of all the circumstances of the crime committed by an individual before deciding that it is a “serious crime” which justifies exclu ...

19th September 2018 By

Stateless refugee family win right to have claims decided in UK

The UK authorities do not emerge with much humanitarian credit from this newly reported tribunal case. For years the government has strenuously resisted the obviously meritorious and compassionate request by a stateless refugee family to be reunited. ...

18th September 2018 By

Fellow church-goers can give “expert evidence” on an asylum seeker’s conversion to Christianity

TF and MA v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] CSIH 58 is a recent Court of Session (Inner House) decision which addresses two key themes within the immigration and asylum sphere. Firstly, the extent to which adverse credibility finding ...

6th September 2018 By

Comment: the Home Office must adopt a principled approach to DNA testing

In 1985, immigration solicitor Sheona York read an article in the Guardian about a new technology for proving someone’s identity. She called the inventor, Professor Alec Jeffreys, at the University of Leicester to see whether this “DNA tes ...

3rd September 2018 By

How to claim asylum in the UK

Claiming asylum is an important human right backed by the United Nations Refugee Convention and recognised by countries around the world. In order to make this right a reality in practice, countries like the UK have set up systems by which people must ...

29th August 2018 By

Still Falling Short: recent study highlights special features of LGBTQI+ asylum claims

The recently published UK Lesbian & Gay Immigration Group report Still Falling Short examines the Home Office’s decision-making in  asylum applications from LGBTQI+ people. The report is a qualitative study of mainly lesbian, gay and bisexual c ...

22nd August 2018 By

Upper Tribunal refuses asylum to Ukrainian draft evader

In PK (Draft evader; punishment; minimum severity) Ukraine [2018] UKUT 241 (IAC) the Upper Tribunal has refused to protect a Ukrainian draft evader despite acknowledging that there is evidence that taking part in the conflict might involve committing ...

15th August 2018 By

Supreme Court delays decision in decades-old refugee resettlement saga

What’s another few months when you’ve been waiting two decades? For the past 20 years, a group of Iraqi and Syrian Kurds have been marooned on a British military base in Cyprus, recognised as refugees but denied settlement in the UK. In R ...

31st July 2018 By

Don’t forget about Article 8 in asylum cases

The success or failure of a fresh claim judicial review usually depends on the specific facts of the case and the quality of the Home Office’s reasoning in their decision letter. As a result they rarely contain points of general importance and are n ...

19th July 2018 By

New Home Office “lines to take” in Sudanese asylum claims

The Home Office now believes that the Sudanese country guidance cases should no longer be followed, based on a change of country circumstances. Its “lines to take” now argue that while non-Arabs are likely to be at risk in the Darfur regio ...

17th July 2018 By

Italy responsible for the asylum claim of man extradited to the Netherlands

The Court of Justice of the European Union has taken a strict approach to time limits on take back requests imposed by the Dublin III Regulation. In case C‑213/17 X v Staatssecretaris van Veiligheid en Justitie, the court ruled that Italy had respon ...

16th July 2018 By

New country guidance case on Kurds returned to Iraq

AAH (Iraqi Kurds – internal relocation) (CG) [2018] UKUT 212 (IAC) is a recent country guidance case on the availability of internal relocation for Iraqi Kurds to the Iraqi Kurdish Region. This case updates some of the guidance contained in AA ( ...

2nd July 2018 By

Comment: success of Syrian refugee resettlement shows that the Home Office can get it right

Nour Taleb runs the Sweety House, the latest popular Syrian business to open in Edinburgh. Mr Taleb fled Syria in 2012, arriving in the UK as a refugee under the government’s Syrian Vulnerable Persons Resettlement Scheme in 2016. A similar tale ...

21st June 2018 By

Boys to men: how to prepare asylum appeals for young Afghans

There are a considerable number of asylum claims in the UK by young Afghan boys and men. The number should not be overstated, though. The latest immigration statistics show that Afghans are still outside the top five nationalities claiming asylum in t ...

21st June 2018 By

Opening a window into the soul: how to prepare asylum claims based on religion

“I would not open windows into men’s souls,” said Elizabeth I. But that is exactly the task facing those charged with deciding asylum claims based on religion. Is a professed conversion to another religion sincere or sham? In a society where fre ...

20th June 2018 By

Five things you didn’t know about refugees in the UK

  To mark Refugee Week, here are some facts and figures on refugees and asylum seekers in the UK. 1. The number of asylum seekers in the UK is falling Around the world there are 68.5 million people who have been forced to flee their homes, accord ...

19th June 2018 By

New statement of changes to the Immigration Rules: HC1154

On Friday 15 June, a new statement of changes was laid. Rather atypically, many of the changes are welcome news! All changes will come into force on 6 July 2018, although some only apply to applications made after that date. As always, practitioners a ...

18th June 2018 By

What is the legal definition of a “refugee”?

This week is Refugee Week. On Free Movement we try to communicate complex legal issues in immigration and asylum law in a clear way and here we answer the question “what is a refugee?” We’ll have a load of other refugee related conte ...

18th June 2018 By

Council criticised for failure to provide accommodation to child refugees

Most unaccompanied child asylum seekers and refugees will be “children in need” for the purposes of the Children Act 1989. So the issue of whether or not local authorities have properly exercised their duties to provide accommodation and care freq ...

13th June 2018 By
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