All Articles: policies

Ethical decision-making

Soul-searching in a large bureaucracy often manifests in well-meaning paperwork. So it is that the Home Office has published an ethical decision-making model. The document is intended to help staff grappling with difficult moral choices in the course ...

16th November 2021 By

Serious crime enough for humanitarian protection to be revoked

A serious crime is enough for humanitarian protection to be revoked, the Upper Tribunal has held. The case is Kakarash (revocation of HP; respondent’s policy) [2021] UKUT 235 (IAC). Appeal against loss of humanitarian protection initially allowed Mr ...

23rd September 2021 By

New Home Office policy on medical evidence in asylum claims

The Home Office has published a new policy on Medical evidence in asylum claims. For years there had been policy on medico-legal reports from the Helen Bamber Foundation and Freedom from Torture. There was also a much scrappier policy on medical evide ...

19th August 2021 By

Supreme Court upholds Home Office age assessment policy

The Supreme Court has upheld the policy of treating asylum seekers who claim to be children as adults if two Home Office officials think that the person looks significantly over 18. The case is R (BF (Eritrea)) v Secretary of State for the Home Depar ...

2nd August 2021 By

Parts of Home Office policy on Dublin III family reunion declared unlawful

Hundreds of refugee children denied reunion with family in the UK may be able to challenge that decision following a ruling that Home Office policy on “Dublin III” transfers is in part unlawful. The case is R (Safe Passage International) v ...

5th July 2021 By

System for investigating deaths in immigration detention declared unlawful

In R (Lawal) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (death in detention, SoS’s duties) [2021] UKUT 114 (IAC), the Upper Tribunal has decided that the Home Office’s policies on the death of immigration detainees are contrary to its proced ...

15th April 2021 By

A very short introduction to the new Points Based Immigration System

The new Points Based Immigration System — replacing the old Points Based System that was introduced in 2008 — went live yesterday. The government is hailing it as a “simple, effective and flexible system”, although there are ea ...

2nd December 2020 By

How to make complaints against the Home Office

Bill Gates once said that your most unhappy customers are your greatest source of learning. If the same applies to the Home Office staff who have the unenviable job of fielding complaints about their colleagues from irate migrants and their lawyers, t ...

30th November 2020 By

Wildly unlawful bail policy gets only minor tweaks, for now

The Home Office has released new interim guidance on the immigration bail accommodation system. The 15-page document introduces a couple of minor changes to address the High Court’s damning criticism of the department’s bail accommodation poli ...

4th November 2020 By

It just got even more difficult for EU nationals to get British citizenship

On 30 September 2020 the Home Office updated its good character policy for naturalisation to make it even harder for EU nationals to become British citizens.  The new policy doubles the period of time, from five years to ten years, during which certa ...

7th October 2020 By

New intercountry adoption guidance arrives after long absence

New guidance on intercountry adoptions has finally been published following a lengthy gap that left parents, practitioners and even Home Office caseworkers struggling with this tricky section of the Immigration Rules.  The last in-depth document, wri ...

2nd September 2020 By

Bail accommodation system ruled “systemically unfair”

The Immigration Act 2016 brought about extensive changes to the support available to people on immigration bail. Since those changes came into force in January 2018, tens of thousands of people have struggled against the harsh new system, which has ke ...

1st September 2020 By

You can’t just decide to not obey the law, immigration officials informed

On 4 August 2020, the Home Office issued new guidance to its civil servants on how to respond to immigration appeals that the department has lost. The 18-page document can be found here (pdf download). For the most part, the guidance is welcome. Anyon ...

7th August 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

It just got more difficult for EU nationals to become British citizens

The Home Office has decided to make it more difficult for European residents to become British citizens. EU citizens with settled status who apply for naturalisation may now have to provide evidence that they have been living in the UK legally, accord ...

18th May 2020 By

New Dublin III policy brings significant changes for family reunification

On 30 April 2020 the Home Office published an updated policy on the Dublin III Regulation which has some significant changes for family reunification cases. The new policy includes updates on Article 9, Article 13.2 (entry and/or stay), Article 17.2 ( ...

5th May 2020 By

New Home Office guidance on refusing settlement over tax discrepancies

The Home Office has published specific guidance on settlement applications by migrants who previously held Tier 1 (General) leave and who declared different sets of earnings to the Home Office and HMRC. The document must be read alongside the more gen ...

20th January 2020 By

Delay policy leaving trafficking victims in limbo found unlawful

The High Court has declared that the Home Office policy of waiting until an asylum decision is made before considering whether to grant trafficking victims Discretionary Leave to Remain is unlawful. Under that policy, a recognised victim of human traf ...

11th December 2019 By

Briefing: the new Home Office policy on statelessness

The new Tottenham Hotspur manager, José Mourinho, recently vowed not to repeat his past mistakes, but instead will make new mistakes.  The Home Office’s new guidance on statelessness, as with its approach to other topics, both repeats some mis ...

2nd December 2019 By

Home Office comes out fighting in new guidance on false representations

The Home Office has issued new policy guidance on when it will refuse applications on the grounds of deception or dishonesty, i.e. where an applicant has made a false representation. The guidance follows a serious defeat in the Court of Appeal earlie ...

14th October 2019 By

Women trafficked into prostitution are “wealthy” and don’t need asylum, Home Office claims

Official government guidance claims that victims of human trafficking get rich from being sexually exploited in the UK and can be refused asylum, it has emerged. A new Home Office policy document on women trafficked from Nigeria says that those who be ...

28th June 2019 By

Big Home Office policy change: Zambrano carers need to make a human rights application first

On 2 May 2019, the Home Office published updated guidance on “derivative rights of residence”, which includes the rights of Zambrano carers. Buried in the 63-page document is a fundamental change of policy: potential Zambrano applicants must f ...

15th May 2019 By

Should refugees who entered the UK illegally be denied British citizenship on good character grounds?

Back in January, the Home Office updated and expanded its guidance on the “good character” requirement in British citizenship applications. One of the big changes in the guidance is the long overdue recognition of the existence of Article 31 of th ...

13th May 2019 By

How to apply for bail accommodation: latest from the Home Office

The Home Office has updated its policy on the requirements for accommodation and support to enable people to meet the conditions of their immigration bail. The policy applies whether that bail is granted by the Home Office or by the tribunal. While a ...

29th April 2019 By

Bad news for overstayers in latest hardening of British citizenship policy

A recent change in the Home Office’s good character policy for citizenship applications is set to have a significant impact on people with a history of overstaying. The department expressly states for the first time that any overstaying in the last ...

17th April 2019 By

Judge suspends Home Office removal window policy

On 14 March the High Court suspended the Home Office’s removals policy. The decision means that the system of giving migrants “removal windows” within which they can be removed from the UK without warning will be halted for the time ...

18th March 2019 By

Home Office further amends removals policy in response to Upper Tribunal judgment

In R (FB and NR) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2018] UKUT 428 (IAC), the appellants challenged the legality of the Home Secretary’s removals policy (traditionally known as Chapter 60 of his Enforcement Guidance and Instructions, now ...

14th December 2018 By

The irremovables: what happens to national security threats who cannot be deported?

The Home Office considers some foreign nationals living in the UK to be a threat to national security. Sometimes, to deport those individuals (as the government no doubt prefers) would be unlawful, because of how they would be treated on return to the ...

16th November 2018 By
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