All Articles: Asylum

Strasbourg allows Somali test case

The cases of Sufi and Elmi v UK (Applications nos. 8319/07 and 11449/07) have been allowed by the European Court of Human Rights. This is a major judgment on return to Somalia and the conditions there. The press release can be found here and the ...

28th June 2011 By

More on breach of asylum confidentiality

Further to Shivani’s last post on this, the numbers facing removal on the charter flight to Sri Lanka are lower than originally thought, although it still constitutes a mass removal. Evidence of other breaches of confidentiality in Sri Lankan ...

14th June 2011 By

Breach of confidentiality in Sri Lankan asylum return

An investigation is required as a matter of extreme urgency into an accepted breach of confidentiality in respect of the case of a Sri Lankan Tamil woman detained by the UKBA and pending removal to Sri Lanka on 16 June 2011. It is important to stress ...

10th June 2011 By

Lives in the balance

Last weekend I finally read the Refugee Council report Lives in the Balance: The quality of immigration legal advice given to separated children seeking asylum. It is a short, sharp, very depressing but absolutely essential read for any solicitors, O ...

2nd June 2011 By

Treatment of rape, trauma and delay in asylum cases

Ever since the mysterious disappearance of the IAA Gender Guidelines from the old IAA website, there has been an absence of good guidance to immigration judges on gender issues in an immigration context. The Equal Treatment Benchbook has a very good c ...

13th May 2011 By

“Still the merry-go-round goes round, and round, and round again”

The Court of Appeal shows its despair at the immigration tribunal in the case of RM (Zimbabwe) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2011] EWCA Civ 428 (13 April 2011). All three judges lament the fact that they have to remit the case back to ...

13th April 2011 By

Children, family tracing and section 55

Firstly, I should apologise for getting behind with my updates. I have nominally been on holiday this last week and my internet connection, perhaps fortuitously for my holiday, died unexpectedly half way through. Briefly, we have seen a major judgment ...

25th March 2011 By

Age assessment disputes and JR claims

A slightly belated post to highlight another important decision of the Court of Appeal that will have relevance to both immigration and family law practitioners.  R (FZ) v London Borough of Croydon [2011] EWCA Civ 59 concerns age dispute assessments ...

18th March 2011 By

New Zimbabwe Country Guidance out

The long awaited new Country Guidance case on Zimbabwe is finally out: EM and Others (Returnees) Zimbabwe CG [2011] UKUT 98 (IAC) (BAILII link here). It includes interesting guidance not only on Zimbabwean asylum claims but also on dealing with cases ...

14th March 2011 By

New Family Returns Process

The Home Office has introduced a new way of dealing with the return of families from the UK. It is called the ‘family return process’. If it is faithfully implemented by staff on the ground (a big ‘if’), it represents a massive ...

10th March 2011 By

Damages denied for deprivation of permission to work

Mr Justice Collins has rejected a claim for damages by an asylum seeker who was kept waiting for over a year for a decision on his claim and whose application for permission to work was not decided by the Home Office. The case is R (on the applicatio ...

8th March 2011 By

Child asylum claims take LONGER to process

In what to me is a shocking development, we learn through the case of R (on the application of AO) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2011] EWHC 110 (Admin) (28 January 2011) that it actually takes the UK Border Agency longer to process a ...

7th February 2011 By

Tribunal catch up

There have been a few quite interesting tribunal determinations recently, which I have overlooked for various reasons. I thought it was high time for a catch up, otherwise I’ll never force myself to sit down and digest them. MJB (Inability to pr ...

26th January 2011 By

Returns to Greece unlawful, says Strasbourg

The European Court of Human Rights has just held that it is unlawful to send asylum seekers to Greece under what is widely known as the ‘Dublin II’ Regulation for their asylum claims to be processed there. The case is MSS v Greece and Belg ...

21st January 2011 By

Jesus refused asylum: full decision letter leaked

Although not quite on the scale of Wikileaks, Free Movement can today publish a confidential leaked document from the UK Government. It is entirely in keeping with the traditional Home Office practice of bundling as many immigrants out of the country ...

24th December 2010 By

Sri Lankan fresh claims

Welcome to the first post on Free Movement not by freemovement! Several of us in the immigration team at Renaissance Chambers will be contributing posts to this blog in future, and this is the first effort. You may need to bear with us a little as we ...

10th December 2010 By

New Immigration Rules laid

New Immigration Rules have just been laid in Statement of Changes CM 7944. The main change is that the English language requirement for spouses and partners has been introduced, as expected. It takes effect for new applications made on or after 29 Nov ...

1st October 2010 By

Zimbabwe removals still suspended

As recently as 14 September 2010 the Government’s position was that it is not enforcing returns to Zimbabwe. In a debate in the Commons on that day the following question and answer were given: Keith Vaz (Leicester East) (Lab): Given the critica ...

29th September 2010 By

New Zimbabwe fact finding report

UKBA has published a new fact finding report on the situation in Zimbabwe. It is, probably not by co-incidence, just in time for the new test case on Zimbabwe, due to begin on 20 October 2010 and in which the Immigration Advosory Service are again act ...

28th September 2010 By

Eliza Doolittle Exposed As Cockney Flower Girl Shocker

The methods and reports of controversial linguistic analysis company Sprakab, based in Sweden and used by UKBA in disputed nationality asylum cases, have been warmly endorsed by the tribunal in the case RB (Linguistic evidence Sprakab) Somalia [2010] ...

27th September 2010 By

New Iraqi Country Guideline case out

The tribunal has held that it is safe to return to Iraq. In HM and Others (Article 15(c)) Iraq CG [2010] UKUT 331 (IAC) President Blake finds that The degree of indiscriminate violence characterising the current armed conflict taking place in Iraq is ...

23rd September 2010 By

Removals to Greece suspended

The Government has confirmed that removals to Greece under the Dublin II Regulation have been suspended pending the outcome of the test case. This comes following a number of recent news items on the calamity that is the Greek asylum ‘systemR ...

22nd September 2010 By

New policy on children

UKBA has published a new policy on dealing with children, specifically asylum applications by unaccompanied children. It went ‘live’ on 1 September 2010 and can be found with the earlier link or in the Asylum Process Guidance Special Cases ...

14th September 2010 By

Lions Led By Donkeys?

The tragic demise of Refugee and Migrant Justice, formerly known as the Refugee Legal Centre, leaves a gaping and unfillable void in the immigration sector. With its higher than average success rate and top notch training and nurturing programme for a ...

7th September 2010 By

Right to work for asylum seekers

UKBA has laid Statement of Changes CM7929 to give effect (or, at least, limited effect) to the judgment of the Supreme Court in ZO (Somalia) [2010] UKSC 36. This was the case in which the Court held that an asylum claim is still an asylum claim for th ...

23rd August 2010 By

Post flight spouses of refugees

Some tremendously good news for many refugees: in the new case of FH (Post-flight spouses) Iran [2010] UKUT 275 (IAC) the tribunal has found that Article 8 appeals by the spouses of refugees who married the refugee after the refugee left the country o ...

11th August 2010 By

Zimbabwe test case: RN affirmed

Plainly the ratio of HJ is not limited just to sexual orientation cases but will apply to all grounds covered by the Convention. I thought it might be interesting to start with that quotation from the paragraph 38 of TM (Zimbabwe) & Ors v Secretar ...

30th July 2010 By

No notice removals case

R (on the application of Medical Justice) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2010] EWHC 1925 (Admin) should be a wake up call to civil servants at UKBA and Ministers in the new Government. The High Court declared unlawful the Home Office po ...

30th July 2010 By

Louise Perrett complaints rejected

An unpublished UKBA internal investigation has rejected the complaints made by Louise Perrett about the Cardiff asylum team. A summary has been made available. The existence of the ‘grant monkey’ was confirmed, but seems to have been foun ...

29th July 2010 By

Right to work for asylum seekers confirmed

The Home Office appeal to the Supreme Court in ZO (Somalia) [2010] UKSC 36 has been dismissed. This confirms that in cases where a fresh asylum claim has been made and no decision was reached for a year, the asylum seeker obtains a right to work unde ...

28th July 2010 By

Future behaviour and the Refugee Convention

HJ (Iran) and HT (Cameroon) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2010] UKSC 31 represents a fundamental change in UK asylum law. The previous settlement, established by the case of Iftikar Ahmed [2000] INLR 1, was a very British and pragmatic ...

12th July 2010 By

Big Gay Case Allowed

UPDATE: see proper post here with analysis. Sorry for the headline, which is in fact an accurate description of what has happened. Although from the half of the judgment I’ve managed to read so far, their Lordships prefer to refer to ‘prac ...

7th July 2010 By

Removals to war zones

The Court of Appeal has again revisited the vexed question of removals to war torn countries like Somalia in the major new case of HH (Somalia) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2010] EWCA Civ 426. The issues at stake have also been the su ...

27th April 2010 By

Permission to appeal in MS (Somalia)

Just a quick alerter post. This actually happened a couple of weeks ago but I was insanely busy at the time, then forgot to mention it. Permission was granted by the Court of Appeal in MS and others (family reunion: “in order to seek asylum”) Soma ...

13th April 2010 By

Greek case dismissed

The Big Fat Greek Test Case has been dismissed. Read all about it here. Permission has been granted to appeal to the Court of Appeal, though. No news on what will happen to other cases stayed behind Saaedi but they’ll probably stay stayed. Read ...

31st March 2010 By

Greek third country cases

The Council of Europe’s Commissioner for Human Rights has intervened in a Strasbourg case on Greek refugee protection – or rather lack of it: The Commissioner concluded that current asylum law and practice in Greece are not in compliance ...

18th March 2010 By

New Supreme Court judgement: exclusion clauses

Judgment is out in JS (Sri Lanka), an appeal to the Supreme Court from KJ (Sri Lanka) in the Court of Appeal. Judgment here, summary here. The Secretary of State’s appeal was dismissed and the Court of Appeal judgment largely upheld, other than ...

17th March 2010 By

Same day removals condemned

Further to my alerter post on this last month, the judgment is now available in the damning Third Country removals case on children. It is called R (on the application of T) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2010] EWHC 435 (Admin). As exp ...

12th March 2010 By

New fresh claims case

The Court of Appeal has re-visited the proper approach to deciding whether fresh asylum claims meet the rule 353 test. The case is R (on the application of YH) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2010] EWCA Civ 116 and it effectively superse ...

9th March 2010 By

Damning judgment on removal of children

Mr Justice Collins has given a scathing judgment in a grant of permission to a judicial review challenge to the practice of the Home Office’s Third Country Unit (TCU) in detaining and removing children to supposedly safe third countries such as ...

19th February 2010 By

Quick Reads