Updates, commentary, training and advice on immigration and asylum law

Confirmed: dependency for extended family members must be unbroken


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In Chowdhury v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2021] EWCA Civ 1220, the Court of Appeal has confirmed that where an extended family member applies for an EEA residency card, their period of dependency on their EEA citizen sponsor must have not have been broken up by periods in which they were not dependent. In short, this is because the purpose of granting rights to extended family members is to protect the free movement of EEA citizens. If the extended family member is not a dependant of the sponsoring EEA citizen at any given time, then there is no need to them give rights to protect the free movement of the EEA citizen.

As Bilaal’s write-up of the Upper Tribunal decision explains, this was an important issue under the EEA Regulations 2016 (and 2006). The tribunal decision had real practical impact by limiting the ability of some extended family members to get the EEA residence documents they needed to apply for settled status. Post-Brexit, the Court of Appeal decision will only be relevant to a small number of people with outstanding appeals or applications under the EEA Regulations.

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Alex Schymyck

Alex Schymyck

Alex is a barrister at Garden Court Chambers