All Articles: complexity

The Immigration Act at 50: is it still up to the job?

Today marks a significant date in the immigration lawyer’s calendar: it is 50 years exactly since the Immigration Act 1971 received royal assent. Free Movement staff have planned a party to celebrate the occasion (not).  The 1971 Act is the root of ...

28th October 2021 By

Indefinite leave to remain can be revoked, but not cancelled

We get it: immigration law is tricky. Even so, C1 v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2021] EWHC 242 (Admin) is on another level and is probably best summarised by this GIF: Math Calculate GIF from Math GIFs The gist of the decision is that ...

15th February 2021 By

The problem with “simplifying” immigration law

Immigration law is complicated. This will probably not be a surprise to readers of this blog. There has, over the last couple of years, been a concerted effort to simplify it. This is a good thing. But has it been successful? Different types of compli ...

30th December 2020 By

Home Office aims to completely rewrite “confusing” Immigration Rules by January 2021

The Home Office has accepted the need to simplify the “complex and confusing” Immigration Rules and says that the work is already underway. In an official response to the Law Commission’s recent report on the subject, the department ...

25th March 2020 By

Law Commission calls for total rewrite of Immigration Rules

The Law Commission’s long-awaited report on Simplification of the Immigration Rules says that rewriting and paring down the “overly complex and unworkable” document would improve legal certainty and transparency for applicants as we ...

14th January 2020 By

Is the government website misleading visa applicants?

I am seeing more and more people who have filed their own visa application, relying on what they’ve read on the immigration pages of gov.uk. They often tell me that they followed the information on the website carefully when preparing their appl ...

5th December 2019 By

Senior judges despair of “Byzantine” immigration laws

Always a worry (but never a surprise) when Court of Appeal judges start off a judgment by saying that the case “has a tortuous procedural history”, is “highly technical” and involves “Byzantine… provisions” of immigration law. Firdaws v ...

31st July 2019 By

Immigration Rules must be rewritten, Law Commission says

The Immigration Rules should be redrafted and restructured in order to cut down on complexity, the Law Commission says. Launching a consultation on Simplifying the Immigration Rules today, the influential law reform body proposes major revisions ...

21st January 2019 By

Future immigration sponsorship system for UK employers – it really does need to be simple this time

There is so much in the immigration white paper, publishedjust before Christmas, that sounds pretty good for employers. But if the sponsorship system is to cope when extended to cover skilled workers arriving from the EU, a huge amount of work will b ...

9th January 2019 By

Less is more: tribunal criticised for overly long judgments

A client’s statement “I was foolish to…” in a witness statement is sometimes the starting point for the submission “My client is not clever enough to lie/to lie to the extent alleged by the Respondent”. It is an uncomfortable submission t ...

27th November 2018 By

Immigration tribunals lose their way in overcomplicated human rights rules

The appeal of Orhan Mendirez [2018] CSIH 65 is an interesting judgment from the Inner House in which both the Upper Tribunal and First-tier Tribunal come in for criticism. Both failed to approach their decision-making task, in an appeal focused on Art ...

9th October 2018 By

Employment tribunal bites off more than it can chew in right to work case

Afzal v East London Pizza Ltd (t/a Dominos Pizza) (Rev 1) [2018] UKEAT 0265_17_1304 is a decision of the Employment Appeal Tribunal. It touches on the vexed issue of an employee continuing to work while awaiting a decision from the Home Office on an ...

13th July 2018 By

The spider’s web of the Points Based System

The web of Rules and Guidance has become so tangled that even the spider has difficulty controlling it. So says Lord Justice Underhill in Mudiyanselage v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] EWCA Civ 65, the latest decision in a long line ...

1st February 2018 By

How complex is UK immigration law and is this a problem?

One of the fundamental principles of the rule of law is that the law “must be accessible and so far as possible intelligible, clear and predictable” (Tom Bingham, The Rule of Law, 2010). The reasons for this should be self evident. Just as it is ...

24th January 2018 By

Visa rules confusion forces successful entrepreneurs to leave UK

In 2011, Russell and Ellen Felber set up the award-winning Torridon Guest House in Inverness. It has hundreds of stellar reviews across TripAdvisor and similar sites. The New Yorkers made their home in the Highlands having fallen in love with the area ...

25th October 2017 By

Supreme Court criticises complexity of immigration rules (but dismisses case anyway)

The Supreme Court has given judgment in the case of Mirza v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2016] UKSC 63. The case concerned the effect of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971 as amended and whether it extends leave where an applicant f ...

14th December 2016 By

Court of Appeal condemns complexity of Points Based System

The Court of Appeal condemns the complexity of the Points Based System in the case of Hossain & Ors v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2015] EWCA Civ 207. Lord Justice Beatson says at paragraph 30: The detail, the number of documents th ...

16th March 2015 By