Tamil returnee claims torture in Sri Lanka

UPDATE: the order made by the Upper Tribunal is now available. A Tamil failed asylum seeker forcibly returned from the United Kingdom to Sri Lanka on 21 February 2012 has claimed that he was tortured on arrival. He was later interviewed by British off ...

27th February 2012 By

Appointments to Panel

This blog congratulates Zane Malik of 12 Old Square, who was this week appointed to the Attorney General’s C Panel of ‘junior juniors’. Zane has made a huge impact on immigration law in the last couple of years and it has become inc ...

23rd February 2012 By

Happy Valentine’s Day!

The BBC’s Inside Out Yorkshire programme ran a  story tonight on sham marriages, trailed in a BBC News item the day before. There are six days left to watch the programme on iPlayer if for some reason you would like to see it. As with Team UK B ...

14th February 2012 By

All change

A plethora of immigration tweaks were announced yesterday, mainly of a technical nature. There is still no sign of the introduction of a minimum income level nor the ending of Tier 2 settlement applications. It is beginning to seem likely that these w ...

14th February 2012 By

Good news for old work permit holders

A new decision from the President of the Immigration and Asylum Chamber of the Upper Tribunal offers relief to work permit holders caught out by a sneaky change to the Immigration Rules in April last year. This topic has been covered here on the blog ...

8th February 2012 By

Indefinite detention: not very British

Just a quick one to flag up a guest post I’ve written for the 1 Crown Office Row UK Human Rights Blog. It covers Abu Qatada, indefinite detention and the irrelevance of the Human Rights Act to the decision that he must be released. ...

8th February 2012 By

Going for Glory: Part 2

Free Movement entirely retracts the article that was previously published here regarding the Chapti case and apologises to those involved. The comments in the article went considerably beyond fair, were unreasonably speculative and were misleading as ...

6th February 2012 By

English language requirements tightening

In parallel announcements the UK Border Agency has said that language requirements for Tiers 1, 2 and 4 of the Points Based System (highly skilled, skilled and students) are being tightened up slightly. The concession that allowed Tier 1 and 2 applica ...

1st February 2012 By

Zimbabwe gay guidance case

The latest Country Guidance case on Zimbabwe finds, in essence, that despite vociferous and violent pronouncements about homosexuality at the highest level in that country, Zimbabwe is a safe haven for lesbians and gays. The case is LZ (homosexuals) ...

31st January 2012 By

Fundraising

Got a Kindle for Christmas? Wondering what to do with it now you’ve read the first couple of chapters of Great Expectations and then swiftly moved on to some Sherlock Holmes? You can now subscribe to Free Movement on your Kindle: while away yo ...

24th January 2012 By

Immigration rules amended to be less human rightsy looking

The Government has finally gotten around to amending the Immigration Rules to make them a bit less human rightsy looking. This follows a number of pledges from David Cameron, Theresa May and Damian Green to do so. Paragraph 395C of the rules is to be ...

20th January 2012 By

The asylum merry-go-round

Lord Justice Ward is at it again: This is another of those frustrating appeals which characterise – and, some may even think, disfigure – certain aspects of the work in the immigration field. Here we have one of those whirligig cases where an asyl ...

19th January 2012 By

Landing in Dover report on reception of children

Today’s report by the Children’s Commissioner, Landing in Dover, exposes gross double standards by UK Border Agency officials. The report reveals the existence of a so called ‘gentleman’s agreement’ operating at the south ...

17th January 2012 By

Batch of tribunal cases

A few reported determinations from late last year have so far escaped comment here. There’s not much to say about these ‘Ronseal’ style determinations. Lest they be forgotten, though, here are the links and official headnotes: Haque ...

12th January 2012 By

Migration Watch: Recovery in Woodlark population “may” be cause of youth unemployment

There was some coverage in the right wing press yesterday about a new Migration Watch ‘report‘ purportedly linking Eastern European immigration with youth unemployment. Migration Watch statistical analysis has been covered here before. Eve ...

10th January 2012 By

Blog changes

Regular visitors to the website will have noticed some changes over the Christmas period. A second column has been introduced on the right with Renaissance Chambers and HJT Training information, with both of which the editor is personally associated. ...

8th January 2012 By

Two Big Euro Cases

Despite having already signed off for Christmas, I’ve been sitting waiting all morning to get on at Hatton Cross and decided to catch up on the two Big Euro Cases from this week. Both are from the Court of Justice of the European Union. The firs ...

23rd December 2011 By

And I’m not making this up…

Following on from last year’s seasonal leak, Free Movement can exclusively reveal a new secret Government proposal designed to cut down on abuse of human rights laws and reduce family immigration into the United Kingdom. The new proposal is said ...

22nd December 2011 By

Entry clearance decision making: a global review

The Chief Inspector of the UK Border Agency, John Vine, has published a global review of entry clearance decision making. The findings are strongly critical in important respects. The sample size was nearly 1,500 case files from every entry clearance ...

20th December 2011 By

Tribunal obliged to seek out representation in Country Guidance cases

The Court of Appeal last week handed down a very interesting judgment on the need for ‘proper argument’ in Country Guidance cases, the obligation on the tribunal itself to seek to secure that proper argument and how far the tribunal deter ...

19th December 2011 By

Pre entry English tests upheld

In a substantial judgment running to 149 paragraphs Mr Justice Beatson sitting in the High Court has rejected a challenge to the rule requiring spouses to attain a certain level of English before entry. The case is R (Chapti and Others) v Secretary of ...

16th December 2011 By

Immigration appeal fees coming soon

As previously highlighted on this blog, fees are to be introduced for immigration appeals. The date has now been set for this to begin: for notices of decision dated 19 December 2011 or later. Strangely, as far as I can see, you won’t find anyth ...

14th December 2011 By

Blog problems

The blog has been experiencing a few problems over the last few days, for which I apologise. The hosting provider moved the blog to a new server accidentally or some such, and everything went offline for about a day. Somewhere along the way some conte ...

10th December 2011 By

Best interests of children

There are two recent cases to cover on this subject. The first is AJ (India) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2011] EWCA Civ 1191, in which I was Shivani Jegarajah‘s junior, despite my puzzling omission from the court record (must s ...

6th December 2011 By

Iraq Country Guidance Overturned

The controversial Country Guideline case of HM and Others (Article 15(c)) Iraq CG [2010] UKUT 331 (IAC) has been quashed by the Court of Appeal. See the order here. The case of HM should no longer be followed as paragraph 2 of the order provides that ...

2nd December 2011 By

Invalid applications

Invalid immigration applications cause serious difficulties. The problem is that the UK Border Agency advises people not to make applications until shortly before their existing leave is due to expire. However, it often takes the Border Agency days or ...

1st December 2011 By

Segregation of immigration decisions

In a dense judgment that more than once has caused me to question my will to live the Court of Appeal has held that it is unlawful for the Secretary of State to separate a decision to refuse to extend leave from a decision to remove. The case is Sapko ...

30th November 2011 By

Change of website address

[UPDATE: now done, as you can see!] I have more or less finished building the new website and plan to switch over shortly. Before I do so I thought it might be helpful for readers to check it out and get back to me with any comments or suggestions and ...

27th November 2011 By

Should I stay or should I go?

The Hegelian dialectic is sometimes expressed as thesis followed by anti-thesis followed in turn by synthesis. Over time, compromise is the outcome. A tendency towards the middle ground can often be seen in human rights case law and immigration policy ...

25th November 2011 By

Skills workshop

Just a quick one to flag up that HJT Training is running a series of skills workshops with the excellent and inspiring Julian Bild as the trainer. Julian, formerly of RLC, Wilson and Co, Tyrer Roxburgh and IAS, has trained countless immigration lawyer ...

19th November 2011 By

One rule for the rich

The Government’s plan massively to increase the minimum income threshold required to sponsor family members to the UK came one step closer yesterday with the publication of a report by the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC). The full report can ...

17th November 2011 By

Blog changes ahead

There will be some changes coming on Free Movement. This has been absorbing quite a lot of my rather limited time of late, and there are several significant recent cases that I haven’t managed to flag up yet, for which I apologise. Work has been ext ...

14th November 2011 By

Review of spouses cases refused on age alone

As well as formally lowering the spouse visa age back to 18 through a formal change to the Immigration Rules on 28 November 2011 in response to the Quila case, the UK Border Agency is enabling the review of cases where applications were refused solely ...

9th November 2011 By

Commission on a Bill of Rights submissions deadline looms

My old pupil master, Ian Lewis, helpfully reminded me the other day that the deadline for the Human Rights Commission is approaching: 11 November 2011. With Remembrance Day and International Corduroy Day, 11/11/11 is going to be busy. The discussion p ...

8th November 2011 By

Spouse visa age lowered

UPDATE: see later post for information on applying for a review if your case has already been refused. The Government has announced today that the spouse visa age will be lowered again from 21 to 18. The change will take effect as of 28 November 2011. ...

7th November 2011 By

Watch out old work permit holders…

Back on 6 April 2011 the UK Border Agency made a change to the settlement rules for work permit holders who had entered the UK before the Points Based System was introduced. The change required a work permit holder to be paid a certain salary in order ...

2nd November 2011 By

Expanded immigration team at Renaissance Chambers

Regular readers will know that Free Movement practises from Renaissance Chambers, as do the other contributors to the blog. We have been expanding our immigration team at Renaissance over the last few months and have now also relaunched our website. L ...

27th October 2011 By

Important new case on children

In a judgment handed down yesterday HH Judge Anthony Thornton QC has given some very interesting guidance on the scope of the duty under section 55 of the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009 following the guidance of the Supreme Court in the ...

26th October 2011 By

New evidence in Points Based System appeals

The Upper Tribunal has reported a decision on the effect of the new section 85A of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002: Alam (s 85A – commencement – Article 8) Bangladesh [2011] UKUT 00424 (IAC). The official headnote reads as follows ...

26th October 2011 By

More on Zambrano guidance

The UK Border Agency has released the slightly more detailed guidance on Zambrano-based applications that was referred to in my earlier post on this. This follows from a Freedom of Information request, although in fact the document had already been pr ...

25th October 2011 By