Interruption to normal service…

Free Movement will be on light to non-existent blogging and Tweeting duties for the next fortnight or so owing to the birth on Monday of baby Annabel, sister to Alec. All is well but blogging is not top of FM’s to-do list at the moment. ...

13th June 2012 By

Can reducing immigration be a legitimate aim in human rights law?

It has been announced that a minimum income threshold will be introduced for foreign spouses to be eligible to come to or remain in the UK. The level will be set at £18,600 for those without children and at higher levels for those with children. In d ...

11th June 2012 By

Poor people to be prevented from marrying

Theresa May has announced that people considered by Bullingdon Club alumni David Cameron and George Osborne to be ‘poor’ will be prevented from marrying or living together in the same area. In order that individual assessments need not be ...

11th June 2012 By

How soft is the law on deportation right now?

Not very soft at all. Paragraph 364 of the Immigration Rules, which governs both the UK Border Agency and to a significant extent the immigration tribunal and courts, states that, subject to human rights law (an important proviso), there is a presumpt ...

10th June 2012 By

Can Article 8 be ‘overridden’?

The BBC is today reporting that Theresa May intends on Monday to introduce new guidelines telling judges what to think about Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights. Article 8 is the right to a private and family life and is worth quoting ...

10th June 2012 By

Can the UK suspend free movement?

In an interview with The Telegraph this weekend Home Secretary Theresa May appeared, at least to those wearing magic-rabidly-Eurosceptic-wishful-thinking-specs, to suggest that the UK Government was contemplating suspending free movement rights for s ...

27th May 2012 By

Inter-country adoption case

In Buama (inter-country adoption – competent court) Ghana [2012] UKUT 146 (IAC) Upper Tribunal Judge Warr held that there is no basis for the UK Border Agency to go behind a court order made by a competent court in a foreign country. Where suc ...

24th May 2012 By

Two tribunal cases on deception

In the case of Mumu (paragraph 320; Article 8; scope) Bangladesh [2012] UKUT 143 (IAC) Judges of the Upper Tribunal Storey and Lane have dismissed an appeal against a refusal under paragraph 320(7A) of the Immigration Rules. This reads as follows: ( ...

23rd May 2012 By

London Legal Walk sponsorship

As in previous years, a team from Renaissance Chambers is today undertaking the London Legal Walk and seeks sponsorship. We provide this blog free of charge but if you would like to support our cause we would be grateful. Follow this link to do so. I ...

21st May 2012 By

Advocate General Opinion on Other Family Members

Advocate General Bot has given his Opinion in the case referred to the Court of Justice of the European Union by President Mr Justice Blake. I have already flagged the new Opinion up on the blog but at the time had not had an opportunity to read it. T ...

18th May 2012 By

GS (India) and medical treatment cases

Some time ago, I put up an angry post (it is never a good idea to publish in anger) about the case of  GS (Article 3 – health exceptionality) India [2011] UKUT 35 (IAC), in which it was held that a diabetic man on dialysis who would be painfully ...

17th May 2012 By

Crime and Courts Bill

As has been widely reported in the mainstream media, the Government proposes to scrap family visitor appeal rights. Again. The change is intended to come into full effect in 2014 but as early as July 2012 the definition of ‘family’ will be ...

16th May 2012 By

UKBA crushes people smuggler

Sometimes you just can’t make it up. The UK Border Agency has posted a video on YouTube of it crushing a van used by people smugglers. http://youtu.be/CUBlN9YEbWI As I understand it, the nine Kuwaiti migrants were removed first. So were the peop ...

15th May 2012 By

More unlawful detention cases

There has been a flood of judgments in the last few weeks on the issue of unlawful detention. With immigration detention used more frequently and for longer periods than ever before, the aftermath of the secret and unlawful presumption of detention po ...

9th May 2012 By

How To Solve Heathrow Queues In Time To Save The Olympics

I have a new and cunning plan to solve the queues at Heathrow, save the Olympics and, as an added bonus, revitalise rock bottom morale at the UK Border Agency, which is by all accounts now falling apart at the seams of its soon-to-be-replaced uniform ...

1st May 2012 By

European Commission warns UK

The European Commission has today given the United Kingdom two months to comply with European Union rules on the free movement of EU citizens and their families across the EU or face an EU court case. You can read the press release yourself here. The ...

26th April 2012 By

Happy Fifth Birthday!

Yet again I missed the blog’s birthday, which was 7 March. Unbelievably (for so, so many reasons) the blog has now been going for over five years. In that time it has clocked up roughly 1,346,037 hits, 521 posts and 2,608 comments between the ol ...

25th April 2012 By

Other dependent relatives

A rare judgment on paragraph 317 of the Immigration Rules, the ‘other dependent relatives’ category, was handed down by the Court of Appeal last month and has so far escaped reporting here on Free Movement due to other commitments. The cas ...

20th April 2012 By

Marriage and validity and ‘subsisting’

A couple of cases on marriage were recently decided in the Family Division and are worth reporting here as they could have a bearing on immigration cases where the validity of a marriage is significant in some way. The first of the cases might also be ...

18th April 2012 By

Unethical and inaccurate: Border Agency to start x-raying children

The UK Border Agency will start x-raying children again from 29 March 2012 in order to determine their age. This practice is highly controversial. The letter announcing the resumption of this procedure can be found here. This brings to mind another ...

28th March 2012 By

Section 85A commencement order doesn’t mean what it says

Far too late to be of use to anyone, the Upper Tribunal has held that the controversial commencement of section 85A did not affect appeals that had already been lodged. The case is Shahzad (s. 85A: commencement) Pakistan [2012] UKUT 81 (IAC). It was ...

23rd March 2012 By

No changing horses in mid stream

In the second Court of Appeal judgment from last week in which Zane Malik was Counsel for the Appellant, that of Lamichhane v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] EWCA Civ 260, the same bench has given another judgment that many migrants ...

15th March 2012 By

Near Miss for Near Miss?

The Court of Appeal has in the case of Miah v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] EWCA Civ 261 rejected the idea of there being a free standing ‘near miss’ argument in immigration cases where the applicant falls just short o ...

14th March 2012 By

Regulation of immigration advice and services

The Legal Services Board has issued a consultation paper that proposes potentially major changes to the regulation of immigration advice and services. The deadline for responses is 24 May 2011. The LSB is critical of the current regulatory regime, say ...

5th March 2012 By

Exceptional circumstances now more… exceptional

As expected, the obscure but important Chapter 53 of the Enforcement Instructions and Guidance (‘Extenuating Circumstances’) has been amended following on from the scrapping of paragraph 395C of the Immigration Rules. The new text is bas ...

2nd March 2012 By

Guest worker era begins

In a slew of new documents published today the Government has heralded the end of quasi-automatic settlement for skilled foreign workers under Tier 2 of the Points Based System, the evisceration of the Overseas Domestic Worker scheme, some tinkering w ...

29th February 2012 By

Obtaining IAS files

The sudden collapse of the Immigration Advisory Service shocked the sector and left many clients without any way of obtaining their paperwork from their former lawyers. Following legal action by the Immigration Law Practitioners Association it will no ...

28th February 2012 By

Tamil returnee claims torture in Sri Lanka

UPDATE: the order made by the Upper Tribunal is now available. A Tamil failed asylum seeker forcibly returned from the United Kingdom to Sri Lanka on 21 February 2012 has claimed that he was tortured on arrival. He was later interviewed by British off ...

27th February 2012 By

Appointments to Panel

This blog congratulates Zane Malik of 12 Old Square, who was this week appointed to the Attorney General’s C Panel of ‘junior juniors’. Zane has made a huge impact on immigration law in the last couple of years and it has become inc ...

23rd February 2012 By

Happy Valentine’s Day!

The BBC’s Inside Out Yorkshire programme ran a  story tonight on sham marriages, trailed in a BBC News item the day before. There are six days left to watch the programme on iPlayer if for some reason you would like to see it. As with Team UK B ...

14th February 2012 By

All change

A plethora of immigration tweaks were announced yesterday, mainly of a technical nature. There is still no sign of the introduction of a minimum income level nor the ending of Tier 2 settlement applications. It is beginning to seem likely that these w ...

14th February 2012 By

Good news for old work permit holders

A new decision from the President of the Immigration and Asylum Chamber of the Upper Tribunal offers relief to work permit holders caught out by a sneaky change to the Immigration Rules in April last year. This topic has been covered here on the blog ...

8th February 2012 By

Indefinite detention: not very British

Just a quick one to flag up a guest post I’ve written for the 1 Crown Office Row UK Human Rights Blog. It covers Abu Qatada, indefinite detention and the irrelevance of the Human Rights Act to the decision that he must be released. ...

8th February 2012 By

Going for Glory: Part 2

Free Movement entirely retracts the article that was previously published here regarding the Chapti case and apologises to those involved. The comments in the article went considerably beyond fair, were unreasonably speculative and were misleading as ...

6th February 2012 By

English language requirements tightening

In parallel announcements the UK Border Agency has said that language requirements for Tiers 1, 2 and 4 of the Points Based System (highly skilled, skilled and students) are being tightened up slightly. The concession that allowed Tier 1 and 2 applica ...

1st February 2012 By

Zimbabwe gay guidance case

The latest Country Guidance case on Zimbabwe finds, in essence, that despite vociferous and violent pronouncements about homosexuality at the highest level in that country, Zimbabwe is a safe haven for lesbians and gays. The case is LZ (homosexuals) ...

31st January 2012 By

Fundraising

Got a Kindle for Christmas? Wondering what to do with it now you’ve read the first couple of chapters of Great Expectations and then swiftly moved on to some Sherlock Holmes? You can now subscribe to Free Movement on your Kindle: while away yo ...

24th January 2012 By

Immigration rules amended to be less human rightsy looking

The Government has finally gotten around to amending the Immigration Rules to make them a bit less human rightsy looking. This follows a number of pledges from David Cameron, Theresa May and Damian Green to do so. Paragraph 395C of the rules is to be ...

20th January 2012 By

The asylum merry-go-round

Lord Justice Ward is at it again: This is another of those frustrating appeals which characterise – and, some may even think, disfigure – certain aspects of the work in the immigration field. Here we have one of those whirligig cases where an asyl ...

19th January 2012 By

Landing in Dover report on reception of children

Today’s report by the Children’s Commissioner, Landing in Dover, exposes gross double standards by UK Border Agency officials. The report reveals the existence of a so called ‘gentleman’s agreement’ operating at the south ...

17th January 2012 By