What does the new UK-France Sandhurst Treaty say and is it Brexit proof?

The UK and France have agreed a new Sandhurst Treaty on the management of their shared border. We’ve heard the spin from Macron and May, but what has actually been agreed and will it have a life after Brexit? Given how central the issue of asylu ...

19th January 2018 By

New immigration bail and detention powers in force from today

Significant changes to immigration detention powers and a new status called “immigration bail” come into force today, 15 January 2018. The Immigration Act 2016 (Commencement No. 7 and Transitional Provisions) Regulations 2017 commence se ...

15th January 2018 By

Old Free Movement content now members-only

In order to improve the service Free Movement provides to both members and casual readers I have made a number of changes to the website in the last year. I have recruited an assistant and then also CJ McKinney as deputy editor. I touched on these in ...

15th January 2018 By

Court of Appeal stomps on human rights appeals for visitors

The Court of Appeal has dealt a serious blow to rights of appeal for visitors to the UK. Here we analyse the legal situation and take a look at the three judgments. ...

11th January 2018 By

Free Movement review of 2017 and look ahead to 2018

The year 2017 was not one that much troubled the goats, at least those hircine heroes whose hirsute hides historicise immigration legislation; 2017 will see no major Act of Parliament written in vellum which directly affects immigration law, unlike th ...

2nd January 2018 By

The impact of Brexit on UK asylum law: part three

The refugee definition Engagement of the CJEU with asylum issues Since the jurisdiction of the Court of Justice of the European Union was expanded to include asylum matters, we have a fairly steady rise in the number of judgments on these issues. Most ...

29th December 2017 By

The impact of Brexit on UK asylum law: part two

Selective participation in CEAS Participation in the Common European Asylum System is not necessarily “all or nothing”, nor does it absolutely require membership of the EU. Even within the EU, involvement in CEAS is also selective in some cases. H ...

28th December 2017 By

The impact of Brexit on UK asylum law: part one

The issue of asylum and the refugee crisis in Europe played a very significant part in the debate on Britain’s continuing membership of the European Union in the run up to the Brexit referendum in June 2016. Many commentators consider that the issue ...

27th December 2017 By

Tribunal not permitted to consider post-decision evidence without consent of Home Office

In Mahmud (S. 85 NIAA 2002 – ‘new matters’) [2017] UKUT 488 (IAC) the Upper Tribunal, chaired by Mr Ockelton, decided that the tribunal cannot take into account a post-decision relationship and birth of a child in a human rights ap ...

20th December 2017 By

November 2017 immigration update podcast

Welcome to the November 2017 edition of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. This month I cover a few bits of immigration news, several cases on detention and then run through some other case law. I end with a mention for some new explainer p ...

20th December 2017 By

Section 3C leave counts as a grant of Tier 4 leave towards five year study limit

In R (on the application of Ahmed) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (3C leave – whether “granted”) [2017] UKUT 489 (IAC) the tribunal holds as follows, according to the official headnote: Where a person who is present wi ...

19th December 2017 By

Tribunal gives guidance on assessing truthfulness in asylum cases

In KB & AH (credibility-structured approach) Pakistan [2017] UKUT 491 (IAC) the tribunal declined to give updated country guidance on the situation of Ahmadis in Pakistan because the case apparently turned on its own facts. This is often the case ...

18th December 2017 By

Immigration tribunal cannot conditionally allow appeals

In an Upper Tribunal determination that will come as a surprise to no-one other than the judge whose decision was under appeal, President Lane has held that it is not possible for the tribunal to allow an appeal on a conditional basis. The case is HH ...

15th December 2017 By

October 2017 immigration update podcast

Welcome to the October 2017 edition of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. This month we look at a load of cases from Strasbourg, the Supreme Court, the Court of Appeal and of course the Upper Tribunal. These cases range from the sublime, in ...

15th December 2017 By

Law Commission review of Immigration Rules included in new projects list

From the project description: Hundreds of thousands of decisions are made annually under the Immigration Rules. Decisions which can be life changing for those seeking entry or leave to remain in the UK and their families. But the Rules are widely crit ...

14th December 2017 By

How many EU citizens will be criminalised by Brexit?

Some EU citizens now living in the UK will find themselves committing criminal offences after Brexit. That much is certain. How many people exactly will become unlawfully resident is probably impossible to calculate, and here at Free Movement we do no ...

13th December 2017 By

September 2017 immigration update podcast

Welcome to the September 2017 edition of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. This month covers several cases, one from the Court of Appeal and the others from the Upper Tribunal. I’m also going to give a mention to some of our new expl ...

13th December 2017 By

Australian supreme court considers British Overseas Citizenship basically worthless

Just catching up on the Australian High Court (their Supreme Court) case on the ban on dual citizenship for holders of public office. If you have not been following it, the Australian constitution bans dual citizens from holding public office. The nat ...

8th December 2017 By

The rise of modern banishment: deprivation and nullification of British citizenship

To deprive a person of their citizenship on the grounds of their behaviour or opinion is to cast them out of society. It is a power of exile or banishment. In Roman law, the punishment of “proscription” was civic and literal death, unless the pers ...

24th November 2017 By

Ministers still struggle with meaning of “indefinite” detention

Asked on 21 November about any link between people being kept in indefinite immigration detention and those same people using drugs, Home Office minister Brandon Lewis replied: We don’t have indefinite detention, so… It was an assertion Le ...

22nd November 2017 By

Naturalising or registering as a British citizen: the good character requirement

With very few exceptions, anybody over the age of ten who applies for registration or naturalisation as a British citizen needs to meet the so-called “good character requirement”. This is a requirement set out in Schedule 1 of the British National ...

20th November 2017 By

The “hostile environment” seeps into criminal trials: defendants must state nationality or face prison

From this week, defendants in the criminal courts must state their nationality. Anyone who fails to do so can be jailed for up to a year. The Criminal Procedure (Amendment No. 4) Rules 2017 (2017 No. 915 (L. 13)) came into force on 13 November 2017. ...

17th November 2017 By

Court of Justice finds EU citizens retain free movement rights after naturalisation in host state

The Court of Justice of the European Union has found in the case of C-165/16 Lounes that EU citizens who move to the UK and later naturalise as British retain their free movement rights under EU law even though they have become British. The court h ...

14th November 2017 By

An immigration lawyer reviews Paddington 2: life in the hostile environment

Warning: contains spoilers. And information about the plot too. Let me say at the outset that Paddington 2 is a deeply unrealistic film. As a Paddington fan and father of two young children I had no problem suspending my disbelief to allow for a talki ...

13th November 2017 By

The immigration rules for adult dependant relatives: out with the old…

Since July 2012 the immigration rules for adult dependent relatives have been, in practice, almost impossible to meet. Applicants need to demonstrate that they require a level of long-term personal care that they are unable to get in their home countr ...

8th November 2017 By

Ever wanted to write for Free Movement? We’re recruiting!

There is a lot going on in immigration law at the moment and we are looking to recruit more specialist contributors to Free Movement. If you can write fluently, you are interested in being read by a wide audience and you are fascinated by immigrat ...

8th November 2017 By

Could Catalan separatists qualify for refugee status in the UK?

Carles Puigdemont, erstwhile President de la Generalitat de Catalunya, fled Spain to Belgium this week following his parliament’s unilateral declaration of independence for Catalonia. Several of his ministers followed him into exile. A European ...

3rd November 2017 By

Book review: The Child in International Refugee Law by Jason Pobjoy

The Child in International Refugee Law by Jason Pobjoy, a barrister at Blackstone Chambers, is an extremely useful, practical and important contribution to the international protection of child refugees. I cannot do better than Pobjoy’s own summ ...

27th October 2017 By

Brexit increasing risk of modern slavery, report reveals

In a report published today a group of experts on modern slavery reveal that uncertainty, confusion and threats to EU migrants as a result of Brexit is making it more likely that EU workers will face labour exploitation in the UK. This is a very good, ...

26th October 2017 By

Home Secretary Amber Rudd announces review of Immigration Rules

The Home Secretary, Amber Rudd, has announced that the Law Commission will conduct a review of the Immigration Rules. The review came to light in Rudd’s oral evidence to the Home Affairs Select Committee on 17 October but Law Commission staff ha ...

26th October 2017 By

Continuing professional development (CPD) training for immigration lawyers

What are the rules on continuing professional development (CPD) training for immigration solicitors, barristers and OISC advisers, and what CPD training is now approved by the legal regulators? How much CPD training can now be undertaken online? Here ...

26th October 2017 By

New ebook now available: Naturalising as a British citizen

Our new ebook guide Naturalising as a British citizen is now available for purchase for £9.99 (free for Free Movement members). For most people, an application for naturalisation is something they can complete on their own. This ebook helps individua ...

19th October 2017 By

MPs launch inquiry into Home Office delivery of Brexit, submissions sought

Following on from the session last week in which I and others were called to give evidence to the Home Affairs Committee, a formal inquiry into the Home Office delivery of Brexit has now been launched. Written submissions are invited by the committee ...

19th October 2017 By

FOI response: waiting times for permanent residence certificates triple

Eight months and a warning from the Information Commissioner later, the Home Office has finally replied to my Freedom of Information request on waiting times for EU residence documents. The figures only go to the end of 2016 and it seems likely that w ...

18th October 2017 By

August 2017 immigration update podcast

Welcome to the August 2017 edition of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. This month I’m starting with a run through of a few relevant bits of news and some blog posts to highlight rather than cover in depth, then moving on to a series of ...

18th October 2017 By

Why is the Home Office separating a British man from his wife when she is still breastfeeding their daughter?

This week the story of Dan Newton and his family has hit the newspapers. This post explains why the Home Office has acted as it has. It is not a mistake. Since harsh new rules were introduced in 2012, UK immigration policy does not usually allow Briti ...

16th October 2017 By

What are the terms of the immigration “amnesty” for survivors of the Grenfell Tower disaster?

The Home Office has revised its policy on the immigration “amnesty” for survivors of the Grenfell Tower fire. In short, the government was offering a grant (or extension) of 12 months leave to enter or remain, with access to public funds include ...

11th October 2017 By

Book review: The Making of an Immigration Judge by James Hanratty RD

James Hanratty RD, known as a compassionate and sometimes rather unconventional judge, will be a familiar name and indeed face to any London-based barrister specialising in immigration work. I for one was relieved rather than panicked when I would see ...

11th October 2017 By

Nick Blake QC retires from High Court

The Honourable Sir Nicholas John Gorrod Blake retired from the High Court (Queen’s Bench) with effect from 3 October 2017. Sir Nicholas Blake (68) was called to the Bar (M) in 1974, took Silk in 1994 and was elected a Bencher in 2002. He was appoint ...

10th October 2017 By

Tribunal criticises government lawyers for “trench warfare” mentality and “inappropriate” conduct

In one of his final judgments as outgoing President, Mr Justice McCloskey launched a bitter broadside at the conduct of government lawyers in long-running litigation over the entry of refugee children. While the criticism of the solicitors at the Gove ...

9th October 2017 By
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