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Court of Appeal declines to re-open MY (Pakistan) human rights ruling


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The Court of Appeal has added a rider to last month’s decision in MY (Pakistan). On 15 October, the court held that the Home Office can refuse to engage with human rights claims bolted on to normal immigration applications, which is bad news for the reasons Nath outlines.

That judgment did leave open the possibility of a fast-track judicial review challenge, before the same panel of judges, for MY to air different legal arguments. This would have involved the same Court of Appeal panel reconstituting itself as a Divisional Court to hear a judicial review challenge to the Home Office’s “one-application-at-a-time policy”. Getting that policy ruled unlawful could solve the problem of people being unable to introduce human rights arguments as part of mainstream immigration procedures.

In the end, the court decided not to go down that road:

this Court is not in a position to determine the lawfulness of the one-application-at-a-time policy, either generally or as applied to the Appellant, on the basis of the pleadings or the evidence before us… neither the Appellant’s grounds of appeal nor his skeleton argument set out a properly formulated public law challenge – unsurprisingly, since these are not at present judicial review proceedings and that is not how his case was being put…

So a judicial review of the “one-application-at-a-time policy” will have to wait for another day and another court. The new judgment is MY (Pakistan) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2021] EWCA Civ 1615, dated 4 November.

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CJ McKinney

CJ McKinney is a specialist on immigration law and policy. Formerly the editor of Free Movement, you will find a lot of articles by CJ here on this website! Twitter: @mckinneytweets.