Immigration update podcast, episode 87

Welcome to episode 87 of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. This month we’re covering two main sets of reform proposals, the New Plan for Immigration and changes to judicial review. We’ve also got a bunch of new Immigration Rule ...

9th April 2021 By

Immigration and nationality fees for 2021/22

The updated list of fees for immigration and nationality applications that apply from 6 April 2021 shows that all remain unchanged from last year. This marks the third financial year running that headline application fees have been largely frozen, ha ...

6th April 2021 By

Why sticking to the Refugee Convention still matters

When someone says that refugees should claim asylum in the first safe country they reach, what they really mean is that other countries should look after refugees. They want others to do what they would not do themselves. Their words are really addres ...

1st April 2021 By

What is actually going on at the Home Office? A guide for journalists

We’ve seen a constant drip of leaks about the UK’s “broken” asylum system and how the upcoming Borders Bill or Sovereign Borders Bill or New Plan For Immigration or whatever it’s called will be the “biggest overhaul ...

23rd March 2021 By

Censure of lawyers over asylum camp case shows difficulty of systemic litigation

The High Court has taken a leading firm of solicitors to task for its handling of an urgent application for judicial review of conditions at a converted military barracks holding asylum seekers, but concluded that the case was not serious enough to wa ...

22nd March 2021 By

Supreme Court reiterates that a refugee cannot be removed until claim is assessed

The Supreme Court has reiterated that — for now — UK law prohibits removal of a person “who can be understood to seek refugee status” and who has an outstanding asylum claim or appeal. The case is G v G [2021] UKSC 9 and invol ...

19th March 2021 By

Does the policy of deterring asylum seekers actually work?

With a recent inspection revealing the squalor in which refugees are housed when they reach the United Kingdom, the ensuing closure of Penally barracks but the continued operation of Napier, and yet more deterrent policies being trailed this morning, ...

18th March 2021 By

Immigration update podcast, episode 86

Welcome to episode 86 of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. There were quite a lot of significant court judgments this month, so the episode is almost entirely case law. We start with the Supreme Court decision in the Shamima Begum case (wh ...

12th March 2021 By

The problem with “credibility” as a concept in asylum cases

Whether or not a person is telling the truth about past events often becomes the central issue in many asylum claims. Sometimes this is appropriate. The question of whether an asylum seeker will face a real risk of being persecuted in future does in s ...

10th March 2021 By

Shamima Begum loses case in Supreme Court

Shamima Begum has lost her case in the Supreme Court. This means that she will not be able to return to the UK to argue her main case about whether she should or should not be deprived of her British citizenship. But her main case remains outstanding ...

26th February 2021 By

Immigration update podcast, episode 85

Welcome to episode 85 of the Free Movement immigration update podcast (not in fact episode 84 as we incorrectly say in the intro). We again start with developments in asylum law before going to business immigration and the Hong Kong BNO visa which is ...

12th February 2021 By

Important report on reform of immigration enforcement

The hostile environment should be reformed by selective repeal of key provisions, addressing Home Office culture and improved routes to regularisation, an influential think tank has found. Beyond the hostile environment, a report released yesterday by ...

10th February 2021 By

Comment: are “radical” and “moderate” positions on migrants’ rights conflicting or complementary?

There has been an interesting and mainly polite (if tense) discussion on and off Twitter in recent weeks about advocacy on migrants’ rights. This is in part linked to a short piece I wrote about deportations and a follow-up by Emma Harrison, dir ...

8th February 2021 By

Analysis of flawed UK tribunal approach to marriages of convenience

Interesting piece over on the EU Law Analysis site by Aleksandra Jolkina about the flawed approach by the First-tier and Upper Tribunals to questions of marriages of convenience in EU law. The tribunals frequently blend the highly ambiguous domestic ...

26th January 2021 By

The UK’s hostile environment: deputising immigration control

Dr Melanie Griffiths and I have spent four years working on an academic article mapping, explaining, analysing and evaluating the hostile environment policy. It is finally done and dusted and is open access, so you can take a look over at Critical Soc ...

15th January 2021 By

Briefing: new UK approach to refugees and safe third countries

The government has introduced important new rules on the handling of claims for asylum with effect from 1 January 2021. Guidance for Home Office asylum caseworkers was published the day before, on 31 December, fleshing out some of the operational deta ...

11th January 2021 By

Immigration update podcast, episode 84

Welcome to episode 84 of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. We’re going over what happened in December 2020, which feels a bit like it was asylum month: we’ve got some very important changes to the Immigration Rules on claiming ...

8th January 2021 By

What are the 10 and 20 year rules on long residence?

The Immigration Rules allow people to apply to remain in the UK on the basis of long residence. Those here lawfully can apply for indefinite leave to remain following 10 years’ continuous lawful residence in the UK. Those who had periods of overstay ...

5th January 2021 By

Important Court of Appeal judgment on expert evidence and “credibility”

The Court of Appeal has handed down a major judgment on the correct approach to assessing whether a person is a victim of trafficking: MN v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2020] EWCA Civ 1746. Although this was the central question in the ...

4th January 2021 By

Free Movement review of the year 2020

It hasn’t exactly been one of the all time greats, has it? Nevertheless, every year I attempt to stand back from the constant updates and news, reflect on what really happened in immigration law during the year and try to look ahead to the comin ...

31st December 2020 By

Supreme Court: no additional “exceptional circumstances” test in Zambrano deportation cases

In the case of Robinson (Jamaica) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2020] UKSC 53 the Supreme Court has held that there is no “exceptional circumstances” test that applies in EU law to protect a non-EU national carer from depor ...

16th December 2020 By

Immigration update podcast, episode 83

Welcome to episode 83 of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. It’s a case law heavy episode, with lots of judgments from the immigration tribunal, Court of Appeal and even the European Court of Human Rights to chew on. We also talk abou ...

11th December 2020 By

Immigration and nationality fees unchanged for 2020/21

The list of fees for immigration and nationality applications was updated on 1 December 2020 to reflect the new or rebranded visa routes introduced on that date. The actual amounts are unchanged, though, and indeed application fees have mostly been f ...

8th December 2020 By

What even is United Kingdom immigration policy right now?

I follow immigration law and policy pretty closely but, I must confess, I simply do not know what UK government immigration policy is right now. We are told there is a new points based immigration system but that tells us nothing about what outcomes t ...

4th December 2020 By

New unofficial policy on deporting Jamaicans who arrived as children reported

The Guardian reports that the Home Office has agreed with Jamaica not to deport Jamaican citizens who arrived in the UK under the age of 12. The scope of the reported agreement is unclear: it arises in the context of an upcoming deportation flight to ...

30th November 2020 By

Immigration update podcast, episode 82

Welcome to episode 82 of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. This month we mostly focus on a host of changes to the Immigration Rules introduced in October and mainly coming into force in December. There are also some big cases on long resid ...

13th November 2020 By

Supreme Court finds treatment of skilled worker unfair

The Supreme Court held today in R (Pathan) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2020] UKSC 41 that the Home Office’s treatment of a Tier 2 skilled worker, Mr Pathan, was unfair. Mr Pathan had applied for an extension of his visa as ...

23rd October 2020 By

Removal policy breaches common law right of access to a court

Hot on the heels of this summer’s confected controversy over last minute legal challenges to removals of asylum seekers, the Court of Appeal has ruled that the Home Office’s ‘removal window’ policy is unlawful because it denies ...

22nd October 2020 By

Immigration update podcast, episode 81

Welcome to episode 81 of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. This month we kick off with a big ruling on deportation law before turning to some draft laws affecting EU citizens in the UK. The visa rules for students changed on 5 October, so ...

9th October 2020 By

Iraqi military doctor wins refugee exclusion appeal

The extremely long-running case of AB (preserved FtT findings; Wisniewski principles) Iraq [2020] UKUT 268 (IAC) has finally been allowed outright, subject to any further appeal from the Secretary of State. The appellant, an Iraqi doctor employed to w ...

16th September 2020 By

UK nationality law timeline

As a companion piece to our earlier immigration law timeline, here is an attempt at a nationality law timeline. I know that UK nationality law is complex but I confess I had not anticipated quite how long this one would take. With immigration law, muc ...

14th September 2020 By

Immigration update podcast, episode 80

Welcome to episode 80 of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. This month we start with the EU Settlement Scheme before turning to a couple of cases at the intersection of immigration law and family law. With the slow down in the court system, ...

11th September 2020 By

UK immigration law timeline: 1905 to 2018

I’ve put together a timeline of British immigration legislation as an experiment. It is not a complete list for several reasons, but I think it captures the main moments in the history of British immigration law. To include absolutely everything ...

3rd September 2020 By

Immigration update podcast, episode 79

Welcome to episode 79 of the Free Movement immigration update podcast. This month we’re starting with a few asylum decisions, then talk a little about the Shamima Begum case and go over the latest on coronavirus immigration changes. We look at t ...

14th August 2020 By

Reader survey results 2020

Over 1,100 people took the Free Movement reader survey this year. I’d like to thank everyone who did so. The positive feedback was enormously encouraging — I read every comment — and the less positive feedback was the whole point of ...

4th August 2020 By

Naturalisation as a British citizen

Naturalisation is the legal process by which a non-British adult becomes a British citizen. An application has to be made to the Home Office and if the criteria set out in the British Nationality Act 1981 are met then the application will be granted a ...

24th July 2020 By

Priti Patel proposes Home Office revolution in response to Windrush scandal

Home Secretary Priti Patel has proposed nothing less than a revolution within the Home Office in response to the Windrush Lessons Learned Review by Wendy Williams. In a statement to the House of Commons yesterday, which should be read in full, Patel o ...

22nd July 2020 By

Hospital order not a conviction for purpose of foreign criminal definition

The technical point, or ratio, of MZ (Hospital order: whether a ‘foreign criminal’) [2020] UKUT 225 (IAC) is that a hospital order under section 5(1)(b) of the Criminal Procedure (Insanity) Act 1964 is not a criminal conviction for the pur ...

20th July 2020 By

Seven year rule does not apply to EU children until they’ve lived in UK for seven years

In MM (section 117B(6) – EU citizen child) Iran [2020] UKUT 224 (IAC ) the Upper Tribunal holds that the seven year rule at section 117B(6) of the 2002 Act (which applies to British children and foreign national children resident for seven years ...

20th July 2020 By

General grounds for refusal: alleged deception and innocent mistakes

Making a mistake on an immigration application form can be disastrous. If the mistake is interpreted by officials as an attempt to mislead or deceive, the application will inevitably be refused. If the application was for entry clearance, it will also ...

17th July 2020 By
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