Asylum myths

There are lots of myths out there about asylum and refugees. Here are some of our posts dealing with common misconceptions.

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UK asylum policy posts

Collection of our posts on UK asylum and refugee policy

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Refugee law starter pack

Just getting started on refugee law and issues? Here are some of our explainer blog posts.

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New Refugee Action report slams inadequate, creaking asylum support system

After more than a decade since Limbuela, and three years after Refugee Action, Home Office policy continues to drive asylum seekers into destitution. The Refugee Action report, Slipping Through the Cracks, candidly outlines these failings of the asylum support system. This is hardly the first time these sorts of flaws have been exposed. The whole report features real stories and quotes from the asylum seekers let down by the process, and is well worth a read. The first problem is the decrease in support level over time. Rates used to be set at 70% of mainstream benefits. This meagre level seems princely compared to the current non-emergency (“Section 95”) support...

12th July 2017 By Paul Erdunast

Upper Tribunal rules it unsafe to return anyone to Libya

The violence in Libya has reached such a high level that substantial grounds are shown for believing that a returning civilian would, solely on account of his presence on the territory of that country or region, face a real risk of being subject to a threat to his life or person. This is the country guidance the Upper Tribunal gave in the case of ZMM (Article 15(c)) Libya CG [2017] UKUT 263 (IAC), overturning the earlier country guidance of AT and Others (Article 15c; risk categories) (CG) [2014] UKUT 318 (IAC). The Tribunal gave country guidance on the following issues: Is the Appellant at risk under Article 15(c) if returned to Libya?...

3rd July 2017 By Nath Gbikpi

An immigration lawyer reviews Paddington

In tribute to beloved author Michael Bond (1926-2017), who died yesterday, I am republishing this blog post reviewing the film Paddington, based on the character created by Bond. The blog post was originally published on 1 December 2014 and versions of it appeared in the New Statesman and Financial Times. Law is pretty abstract. Unlike the role of a doctor or a builder, that of a lawyer is difficult to explain to a young mind. When my children eventually ask me about what I do when I “work” (confusingly simultaneously a place I seem to go to and a thing I do at home; either takes me away from them) my plan is to...

29th June 2017 By Colin Yeo

In depth look at the new Home Office settlement policy for refugees after five years

In March 2017 the Home Office has announced a new policy of reviewing whether all refugees require protection at the end of a 5 year initial period of Refugee Status. This policy is effective for all existing and future applications for Indefinite Leave to Remain (‘ILR’) as a Refugee. This policy has now been effective for three months and, with Refugee Week upon us, it is a good opportunity to delve into it in greater detail. The application process Those recognised as refugees will usually be granted a period of 5 years limited leave. When that leave is due to expire they must apply for ILR. The Home Office gives...

22nd June 2017 By Chris Desira

Athens Refugee Legal Support Project: what is happening on the ground and how to donate

Image (c) Sarah Booker The pilot of the Athens Refugee Legal Support Project has now run for 2 months now. We work out of a community centre in Athens with the support of ILPA and Garden Court Chambers. Weekly reports from UK legal volunteers (solicitors, barristers, case workers) tell a similar story. The Greek asylum service is overburdened. Greek lawyers on the frontline are overstretched and the majority of refugees do not receive any advice or representation prior to receiving the initial decision on their asylum claim. If refused they can expect an excruciatingly long appeal process. To make matters worse, many reside in squats, unable to access accommodation from...

21st June 2017 By Free Movement

Should refugees claim asylum upon arrival in their first ‘safe’ country?

“Why don’t asylum seekers stop before they get here?” I have been asked this question many times. There are lots of safe countries on the way, so the argument goes. Why wait until they arrive in the UK to make their claim? They’re not going to get killed in France, after all. The insinuation is that the application for refugee status is cover for the real motive, probably economic, and the UK best serves those ends. With Refugee Week upon us, I wanted to explore this question. A numbers game Firstly, a few facts. During 2016, to the south, 123,370 people claimed asylum in Italy, and 85,244 in France. To...

20th June 2017 By Nick Nason