Statement of changes for Nov 2016: Changes relating to the entry clearance Rules

Changes relating to the entry clearance Rules

A change is being made to the entry clearance Rules to clarify that British nationals without the right of abode require entry clearance in order to enter the UK for a purpose for which entry clearance is required. The Rules are also being clarified so that applications for visit visas can be made at any post in the world which is designated by the Secretary of State to accept such applications.

Changes to General Grounds for Refusal and suitability requirements

The Government‟s policy is that those who:

  1. Have been excluded under Article 1F from the Refugee Convention or under paragraph 339D from a grant of humanitarian protection; or
  2. Would have been so excluded but they have never made a protection claim or made an earlier protection claim which was refused without reference to Article 1F or paragraph 339D; or
  3. Are a danger to the security of the UK; or
  4. Having been convicted by final judgment of a particularly serious crime are a danger to the community of the UK, will only be granted leave to remain in the UK where their deportation or administrative removal would breach their human rights.
  5. Where that is the case, such individuals will be granted leave to remain outside the Immigration Rules under the “restricted leave” policy.

Currently, applications for limited or indefinite leave to remain made under the Immigration Rules by those who fall within the scope of the restricted leave policy are refused on a discretionary basis (for example, under paragraph 322(5) in Part 9, or paragraph S-LTR.1.6. in Appendix FM).

The changes to Part 9, Appendix AF and Appendix FM clarify that applications from such individuals made under the Immigration Rules, whether for limited or indefinite leave to remain, should always be refused. This is for reasons of public interest and public protection and to uphold the rule of law internationally, because they are unwelcome in the UK and are a priority for deportation or removal if and when this is consistent with their human rights. Instead, limited leave will continue to be granted outside the Immigration Rules for as long as their human rights prevent deportation or removal.

It is only very rarely that individuals subject to the restricted leave policy will be able to show that they should be granted indefinite leave to remain after a long period of lawful residence in the UK because it will be difficult to demonstrate that they are now welcome here and that their individual circumstances outweigh the need to maintain the UK‟s international reputation as a country that will not provide a safe haven to those who have committed internationally repugnant acts and the need to deter others who have committed such acts from coming to the UK. Where it is appropriate to grant indefinite leave to remain, it will be given on a discretionary basis outside the Immigration Rules and pursuant to the restricted leave policy.