All Articles: Tribunal

Man who has never left the UK avoids deportation after seven-year legal battle

A 38-year-old man born in the UK without British citizenship cannot be deported to a country he has never even been to, the Upper Tribunal has decided. The case is Akinyemi v Secretary of State for the Home Department (unreported, DA/00574/2014). Rem ...

7th December 2021 By

Inflexible biometrics policy for refugee family reunion declared unlawful

In R (SGW) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (JR/227/2021, 26 November 2021) the Upper Tribunal decided that Home Office guidance on refugee family reunion applications is unlawful because it fails to accurately describe the legal discretio ...

6th December 2021 By

Cessation, Article 3 and removing refugees from the UK

In the case of PS (cessation principles) Zimbabwe [2021] UKUT 283 (IAC), the Upper Tribunal has reiterated the correct approach to cessation of refugee status. The case is also a helpful reminder of when a serious criminal offence can and cannot lead ...

29th November 2021 By

The meaning of “admissible” in statelessness cases

In R (AZ) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (statelessness “admissible”) [2021] UKUT 284 (IAC), the Upper Tribunal addressed the issue of admissibility to the country of former habitual residence in the context of statelessness applicat ...

29th November 2021 By

EU law still applies in legacy appeals under the EEA Regulations

Geci (EEA Regs: transitional provisions, appeal rights) Albania [2021] UKUT 285 (IAC) is another appeal under the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2016, but with “highly unusual” facts. Mr Geci had returned to the UK in bre ...

26th November 2021 By

Early guilty plea saves 75-year-old woman from deportation to USA

The seriousness of a criminal offence is a key factor in deportation cases. It is generally judged with reference to the sentence given by the criminal courts. But what happens when that sentence has been discounted due to an early guilty plea? Last y ...

22nd November 2021 By

Upper Tribunal revisits issue of permission for video evidence from abroad

Last week I set out some observations on the taking of evidence by videoconference from abroad. I pointed to substantial authority that, in the case of the willing litigant or witness outside the UK dialling up on Zoom, where no judicial assistance ( ...

22nd November 2021 By

Upper Tribunal reminds everyone: this is not the place for new evidence

Immigration appeals can last a long time: often years and years. What happens when things change during the appeal? This is the question answered by the Upper Tribunal in Akter (appellate jurisdiction; E and R challenges) [2021] UKUT 272 (IAC). The m ...

16th November 2021 By

Fresh guidance on fresh claims

What amounts to a “fresh claim” for permission to stay in the UK and how should the immigration tribunal handle challenges arguing that someone’s case should be treated as a fresh claim? These were the questions considered by the Upp ...

3rd November 2021 By

Restricted leave and Russian justice: when is refusing ILR irrational?

How should the Home Secretary deal with asylum seekers who are excluded from the protection of the Refugee Convention but cannot be deported?  Since 2011, the restricted leave policy has sought to address that question. Restricted by name and restric ...

27th October 2021 By

Claiming humanitarian protection in medical treatment cases

Seriously ill migrants claiming humanitarian protection status must show that a persecutor would intentionally deprive them of medical treatment, the Upper Tribunal has confirmed. The case is NM (Art 15(b): intention requirement) Iraq [2021] UKUT 259 ...

25th October 2021 By

No blanket relief for appellants denied hearing under unlawful pandemic guidance

At the outset of the pandemic, on 23 March 2021, Upper Tribunal President Lane issued guidance for making deciding immigration appeals “on the papers”, without an oral hearing. As all immigration practitioners know, oral hearings are essen ...

27th September 2021 By

Deprivation of citizenship for fraud after Begum

In Ciceri (deprivation of citizenship appeals: principles) [2021] UKUT 238 (IAC), the Upper Tribunal has applied the guidance given in R (Begum) v Special Immigration Appeals Commission [2021] UKSC 7 to deprivation of citizenship appeals on grounds ...

27th September 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

Did the Home Office inadvertently strengthen the rights of Zambrano carers in 2018?

In Velaj (EEA Regulations – interpretation; Reg 16(5); Zambrano) [2021] UKUT 235 (IAC) the Upper Tribunal looked at whether the Home Office accidentally liberalised the regulations on when the primary carer of a British child can be removed from ...

22nd September 2021 By

The best interests of children in Northern Irish immigration appeals

The judgment in Arturas (child’s best interests: NI appeals) Lithuania [2021] UKUT 237 (IAC) looks interesting at first, but turns out to be terrifically arcane. It is about the consequences of a failure by the Home Office to comply with its dut ...

21st September 2021 By

Deported murderer loses anonymity

Selami Cokaj describes himself on LinkedIn as “a shrewd businessman, with a killer instinct”. It is an unfortunate turn of phrase: before moving to the UK in 1997, Mr Cokaj was convicted of murder in his native Albania. His unsuccessful hu ...

18th August 2021 By

The AM (Zimbabwe) test now applies to destitution too

The ripple effects of Paposhvili v Belgium [2016] ECHR 1113 continue to be felt at the boundary of Article 3 ECHR. In the first reported decision of its kind, the Upper Tribunal has found that the “modified” (for which, read “lowered”) test fo ...

16th August 2021 By

Upper Tribunal forced to U-turn on “new matters” appeal loophole

In Hydar (s 120 response; s 85 “new matter”: Birch) [2021] UKUT 176 (IAC), the Upper Tribunal has done an unwilling U-turn on the earlier case of Birch (precariousness and mistake; new matters) [2020] UKUT 86 (IAC). Raising “new matters” in a ...

9th August 2021 By

Home Office can revoke settlement over historical deception

In another reminder that leave obtained by deception can be revoked, we have the Upper Tribunal decision in R (Matusha) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (revocation of ILR policy) [2021] UKUT 175 (IAC). The case confirms that there “ ...

19th July 2021 By

“Open-ended” overstayers can’t rely on ten-year lawful residence rule

This, in a sentence, is the conclusion reached by the Upper Tribunal (after 248 paragraphs!) in R (Waseem & Others) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (long residence policy – interpretation) [2021] UKUT 146 (IAC). Background: over ...

23rd June 2021 By

Game-changer for Sri Lankan Tamil activists seeking asylum in the UK

The new Sri Lanka country guidance judgment in KK and RS (Sur place activities, risk) Sri Lanka (CG) [2021] UKUT 130 (IAC) “clarifies and supplements” the previous decision in GJ and others [2013] UKUT 319 (IAC) “with particular reference to sur ...

7th June 2021 By

Lawyers warned not to include brand new arguments in Cart judicial reviews

Always a stickler for procedure, President Lane has again warned lawyers to not judicially review decisions of the Upper Tribunal refusing permission to appeal on grounds that were not before the Upper Tribunal in the first place. The case is Osefiso ...

25th May 2021 By

Sponsor changing job is not a reason to refuse a spouse visa

If you meet the financial requirements of Appendix FM at the date of application but your sponsor then leaves their job, do you still qualify for a spouse visa? Yes, the Upper Tribunal found in Begum (employment income; Rules/Article 8) [2021] UKUT 11 ...

20th May 2021 By

Judges can decide after the hearing whether an out-of-country appeal is fair

Juba (s. 94B: access to lawyers) [2021] UKUT 95 (IAC) is the latest judgment dealing with the “deport first appeal later” policy, following on from the famous Kiarie and Byndloss case. In Juba, the Upper Tribunal has found that it was acceptable f ...

6th May 2021 By

How important are FGM Protection Orders in asylum claims?

Readers may be forgiven for thinking that, where the Family Court finds that a person is at risk of female genital mutilation and makes a Female Genital Mutilation Protection Order (FGMPO), it will feed into the asylum consideration process. Not so. O ...

5th May 2021 By

Interjacent overstaying may count in 10-year long residence application

In Asif (Paragraph 276B, disregard, previous overstaying) Pakistan [2021] UKUT 96 (IAC) the Upper Tribunal has confirmed that previously disregarded overstaying between periods of leave should be treated as lawful residence for people making 10-year l ...

30th April 2021 By

Home Office can’t just ignore potential persecution even if there is no asylum claim

The Home Office’s compartmentalised approach to applications for permission to stay in the UK can sometimes cause problems. Not everyone’s claim fits neatly into pre-defined categories. So what happens when there is overlap between, for insta ...

23rd April 2021 By

Home Office can make exceptions to rules stopping asylum seekers working

The Upper Tribunal has declared the government’s strict policy on asylum seekers working to be unlawful because it doesn’t mention that exceptions can be made. The case is R (C6) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (asylum seekers ...

22nd April 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

When is a month not a month?

Time is definitely a relative concept, a new Upper Tribunal decision suggests, examining the issue of what constitutes a “month” for the purposes of the Immigration Rules on long residence. The case of Chang (paragraph 276A(a)(v); 18 months?) [202 ...

25th March 2021 By

Belarusian man in limbo since 2003 wins permission to remain in landmark case

In R (AM) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (legal “limbo”) [2021] UKUT 62 (IAC) the Upper Tribunal considered the extraordinary case of a Belarusian man who had been in the UK on immigration bail since 2003. The fundamental question fo ...

23rd March 2021 By

When does having a partner disqualify you from keeping a parent visa?

The Upper Tribunal in R (Waleed Ahmad Khattak) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (“eligible to apply”- LTR – “partner”) [2021] UKUT 63 (IAC) has provided helpful clarification on when having a partner can disqualify someone fr ...

19th March 2021 By

Upper Tribunal guidance on credible documentary evidence

The Upper Tribunal in QC (verification of documents; Mibanga duty) China [2021] UKUT 33 (IAC) has given useful guidance on how to approach documentary evidence submitted by asylum appellants.  The tribunal has also clarified the circumstances in whic ...

23rd February 2021 By

Ignore what the Immigration Rules say about deportation, Upper Tribunal says

In Bikanu (s.11 TCEA; s.117C NIAA; para. 399D) [2021] UKUT 34 (IAC), the Upper Tribunal has confirmed that paragraph 399D of the Immigration Rules has no relevance to the human rights exceptions to deportation set out in section 117C(4)-(6) of the Nat ...

16th February 2021 By

Upper Tribunal has no jurisdiction to correct appeal deadline error

Ndwanyi (Permission to appeal; challenging decision on timeliness) Rwanda [2020] UKUT 378 (IAC) is about how a respondent can challenge a decision that an application for permission to appeal is in time, when in fact it is not in time. In this case th ...

29th January 2021 By

Man who lived in UK under assumed identity for over a decade wins right to stay

Stealing someone’s identity is not a “false representation” for the purposes of a 20-year long residence application, the Upper Tribunal has found. The case is Mahmood (paras. S-LTR.1.6. & S-LTR.4.2.; Scope) Bangladesh [2020] UKU ...

26th January 2021 By
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