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Give me more enforcement powers, says Immigration Services Commissioner

Give me more enforcement powers, says Immigration Services Commissioner

The Office of the Immigration Services Commissioner is changing. For one thing, there will soon be no office — or at least, not a physical one. The OISC is ditching its London headquarters and going fully remote, as well as regional. From 1 April, its staff will be assigned to a particular patch and told to get out into the community to find out what’s going on in the immigration advice world.

The Immigration Services Commissioner, John Tuckett, wants a more “proactive” regulator that strikes a better balance between its two core functions: regulating OISC advisers and stamping out the illegal activities of unregulated ones. Regulation will be less prescriptive, involving “partnership working whereby people can assess themselves, maybe carry out self-audit as well as us auditing them — rather than us doing it all as a Big Brother-type approach”. 

He’s also after more enforcement powers from the Home Office, the better to “disrupt the criminal activity that’s going on”. The reformed OISC will place less emphasis on expensive criminal prosecutions (which may be just as well, since it doesn’t do that many) and more on warnings, cautions and even restitution to victims of unregulated advice. 

John joins me on the podcast this month to explain more about his plans for “transforming the OISC“. Listen in your browser by pressing play above, or find Free Movement on the usual podcast platforms.

CJ McKinney is Free Movement's editor. He's here to make sure that the website is on top of everything that happens in the world of immigration law, whether by writing articles, commissioning them out or considering pitches. CJ is an adviser on legal and policy matters to the Migration Observatory at Oxford University, and keeps up with the wider legal world as a contributor to Legal Cheek. Twitter: @mckinneytweets.