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Ministry of Justice axes 500% rise in fees for immigration tribunals

Rises of up to 500% in immigration tribunal fees have been dropped in an abrupt U-turn by the Ministry of Justice. Following overwhelming opposition in a public consultation to the scheme that would have raised up to £34m a year, all the increases have been abandoned and the department will undertake a more extensive review of fees. In a surprise written parliamentary statement, Sir Oliver Heald, the minister responsible for courts and justice, said that from Friday all applicants would be charged at previous fee levels and those who had paid the increases would be reimbursed. Fees for an application to the first-tier tribunal dealing with immigration and asylum cases rose earlier this autumn from £80 to £490, while an oral hearing rose from £140 to £800. For the first time, appeals to the upper tribunal were being charged at £350 for each application and £510 for an appeal hearing. The immigration tribunal fee rises were introduced by the last justice secretary, Michael Gove, who also cancelled many of his predecessors’ legal fee increases when he first became justice secretary. Advertisement In a recent public consultation on immigration tribunal fees, all but five of the 147 responses opposed the changes....

Public interest Immigration Act 2016 changes

Public interest Immigration Act 2016 changes On most occasions, a person who meets the requirements for continuous lawful residence should be granted indefinite leave to remain. This is unless a grant is against the public interest. You must consider whether there are any reasons why it would be undesirable on public interest grounds to grant indefinite leave. In considering this you must take into account the person’s: age strength of connections in the UK personal history, including character, conduct, associations and employment record domestic circumstances compassionate circumstances any representations on the person’s behalf The applicant must also not fall for refusal under the general grounds for refusal. You must assess the factors in paragraph 276B (ii) to decide whether a grant of indefinite leave would be against the public interest. You must look at reasons for and against granting indefinite leave using the factors listed and, where necessary, weigh up whether a grant of indefinite leave would be in the public interest. If the applicant has not completed the necessary period of residence, they will not be able to satisfy the rules for long residence, regardless of any of the factors listed above. However, even if an applicant has not...

Time spent in the UK with a right to reside under EEA regulations

Time spent in the UK with a right to reside under EEA regulations Time spent in the UK does not count as lawful residence under paragraph 276A of the Immigration Rules for third country nationals who have spent time in the UK as: the spouse, civil partner or other family member of a European Union (EU) national; an EEA national exercising their treaty rights to live in the UK but have not qualified for permanent residence; former family members who have retained a right of residence. During the time spent in the UK under the provisions of the EEA regulations, the individuals are not subject to immigration control, and would not be required to have leave to enter or leave to remain. However, you must apply discretion and count time spent in the UK as lawful residence for an EU or EEA national or their family members exercising their treaty rights to reside in the UK. Sufficient evidence must be provided to demonstrate that the applicant has been exercising treaty rights throughout any period that they are seeking to rely on for the purposes of meeting the long residence rules. This does not affect the rights of family members of...

New immigration rules which replaces the 28 days out of time application

New immigration rules which replaces the 28 days out of time application Any applicant who is applying for leave to remain must not have remained in the UK after the expiry of their original grant of leave, on the date of their application. Remaining in the UK after leave has expired is commonly known as overstaying. The Immigration Rules were amended with effect from 24 November 2016 to abolish the 28 day grace period, under which applications for leave to remain were not refused on the basis of overstaying if made within 28 day of the expiry of leave. The Immigration Rules now provide for current overstaying to be disregarded in a limited number of scenarios but otherwise it is a now a ground for refusal. First, overstaying will be disregarded if the Secretary of State considers that there was a good reason beyond the control of the applicant or their representative, provided in or with the application, why it could not be made in time, provided that the application is made within 14 days of the expiry of leave. Second, overstaying will be disregarded where the applicant previously made an in-time application, or an application which fell within the...

Applying the new changes on the EU Reg 2006

Applying the new changes on the EU Reg 2006 - Non-EEA national family members of dual EEA and British citizens EEA nationals who are also British citizens are not considered to be ‘EEA nationals’ for the purposes of the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2006 (‘the Regulations’). This applies whether or not the British citizen has always resided in the UK. A family member of a dual EEA national and British citizen does not have a right of residence under the regulations on the basis of their relationship to the dual national. If they do not have a right of residence on any other basis under the regulations, they will need leave to enter or remain in the UK under the Immigration Rules. Transitional arrangements Transitional arrangements were put in place following amendments to the regulations in July 2012, which allowed family members of dual EEA and British citizens who had already relied upon a right of residence as the family member of that dual national to continue to enjoy a right of residence where the conditions set out below were met. Persons residing in the UK on 16 July 2012 Persons already residing in the UK on 16 July 2012...

McCarthy judgement has no relevance on EEA Family Residence Applications

European Union law – Residence permits – Family members Article 5(2) of the Directive directs Member States to exempt non-EEA family members from visa requirements otherwise applicable under national law if they hold an EU valid “residence card” issued in accordance with Article 10 of the Directive - the UK has refused to do so because of concerns as to abuse of rights and fraud and the lack of uniform or minimum standards for “residence cards” issued by other Member States - under the Frontiers Protocol, the UK is expressly entitled to exercise such controls at its frontiers on persons seeking to enter the United Kingdom as it considers necessary for the purposes of: (a) verifying the rights of EU citizens and their dependents to enter the UK conferred by Union law, or (b) determining whether or not to grant other persons permission to enter the United Kingdom - the UK considers it necessary to maintain controls (those established under Regulation 11 of the EEA Regulations) on non-EEA family members to enable the Border Agency: (a) to verify that those seeking to enter the UK pursuant to free movement rights granted to family members under the Directive are entitled to...

Supreme Court dismisses appeals against deportation by foreign criminals

Supreme Court dismisses appeals against deportation by foreign criminals In two judgments handed down today, the Supreme Court has dismissed the appeals against deportation by two foreign criminals. EIN members can read the judgment in Hesham Ali (Iraq) (Appellant) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (Respondent) [2016] UKSC 60 and the judgment in Makhlouf (Appellant) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (Respondent) (Northern Ireland) [2016] UKSC 59. The cases concerned the interface between the power of the Secretary of State to deport a foreign criminal and the latter’s ability to resist deportation by reference to his right for respect for his family life under Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). The Supreme Court's press summary for the case of Hersham Ali explains: BACKGROUND TO THE APPEAL These proceedings challenge a deportation order made in respect of the appellant, an Iraqi national who has lived unlawfully in the UK since 2000. He made an asylum claim in 2002, which was rejected, and his subsequent appeal was dismissed. In November 2005 he was convicted of Class A and C drug possession and was fined. On 4 December 2006, he was convicted of two counts...

Apply for a UK visa in New Zealand

Apply for a UK visa in New Zealand Visa service closures in December 2016 and January 2017 The UK Visas and Immigration biometric enrolment centres in Christchurch and Wellington will be closed from 23 December 2016 to 5 January 2017. The Auckland office will be open on 23 and 28 to 30 December 2016. All offices will be open as normal from 6 January 2017. You should allow additional time for the processing of your visa application during this period. New Zealand Post often experiences delays during December, so customers are advised to apply for their visa as early as possible at this time, but no more than 3 months before their intended arrival date in the UK. What does this mean for me? Processing times do not include transit time to and from the decision making hub in Manila. The transit time each way is generally 3 working days, but it can be longer over this holiday period. We have no control over delays in New Zealand Post and this may have an impact on the processing time for individual applications. If you apply for a non-settlement visa using the 15 working day standard service, you should post your...

Tier 2 and 5 priority change of circumstance service

Tier 2 and 5 priority change of circumstance service About the service The priority change of circumstances service allows Tier 2 and 5 A-rated sponsors to apply for a faster consideration of 4 types of change of circumstances request. These are: in year certificate of sponsorship (CoS) allocation follow on CoS allocation add new Level 1 user replace an authorising officer (AO) 2.Eligibility You can only apply for this service if you are an A-rated Tier 2 or 5 licensed sponsor. This service does not apply to restricted certificates of sponsorship. Change of circumstances requests submitted before Monday 7 November 2016 will not be eligible for consideration under the priority service and will be considered under the 18 weeks service standard. 3.How to apply Full guidance on how to submit a change of circumstances request on the sponsorship management system (SMS) can be found in the SMS Manual. Once you have submitted your request you will receive a telephone number to contact, to check the service availability and pay the fee via debit/credit card. During the call you will be asked for your sponsorship licence number, please have this ready. Only one request will be accepted on each call. A...

Apply for a UK visa in Australia

Apply for a UK visa in Australia Visa service closures in December 2016 and January 2017 UK Visas and Immigration will offer a reduced service from 23 December 2016 to 2 January 2017. You should allow additional time for the processing of your visa application during this period. All offices will be open as normal from 3 January 2017. Some visa application centres may remain open during this period, however the Canberra and Manila priority processing offices will be closed from 24 to 28 December 2016 and on 2 January 2017. No 5 working day priority service applications will be processed during these periods. Australia Post often experiences delays during December, so you should apply for your visa as early as possible. Priority visa service If you submit your application and use the 5 working day priority service (non-settlement cases) after 14 December 2016, you may not receive your decision until we re-open after the holiday period. We do not guarantee a 5 working day turnaround, however we do aim to process most priority applications within that time. If you submit your application and use the 10 working day priority service (settlement applications only) after 7 December 2016, you may...