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Home Office refuses Surinder Singh case because applicant knows law


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This just in from the marvellous BritCits:

Furthermore, you have provided a detailed covering letter explaining why you qualify for an EEA Family Permit under Regulation 9. You have quoted case law and the rules concerning how long someone can work in a member state and qualify under Regulation 9. It is clear from this letter that you and your British spouse have gone to extensive lengths to understand fully Regulation 9 of the EEA Regulations which suggests that your reason for living in the France is merely to qualify under the Surinder Singh provision and to circumvent the Settlement procedure.

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Click here to find out more about the full ebook

It is a word for word extract from a refusal of an application to enter the UK in reliance on Regulation 9 of the Immigration (European Economic Area) Regulations 2006 and the case of Surinder Singh. The really remarkable bit is the conflation of going to extensive lengths to understand fully the law (which is undoubtedly complex) and deliberately seeking to break or evade it. These days, only an immigration official would assume that a taste of the Forbidden Fruit of Knowledge must mean… Guilt.

I’ve written before on this type of refusal (Abuse of EU law and Surinder Singh). Perhaps I should add “knowing the law” to the list of risk factors.

In the Surinder Singh ebook I repeatedly emphasise that knowing your rights and realising your rights are quite different when it comes to immigration officialdom. As the refusal above shows, immigration officers have huge powers, vivid imaginations yet small minds. Whether you are in the right or not, antagonising them risks refusal, detention and high legal costs. Ever since I complimented an Immigration Officer on his uniform, shortly after they were introduced, my wife has insisted on holding the passports and doing the talking when we pass through immigration control…

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Colin Yeo

Immigration and asylum barrister, blogger, writer and consultant at Garden Court Chambers in London and founder of the Free Movement immigration law website.


11 Responses

  1. this country is already destroyed , Nasty Britain
    In French we say Nul n ‘ est cense ignore la loi (Every one must know the law )
    In Britain you have to ignore the law in order to have a successful application.
    This government also wants to have UK Human Rights in other words there are two categories of Human beings British and the others therefore two different Human Rights law .

  2. I wonder if the case of ECJ Akrich was mentioned in their detailed analysis of the law.
    If it was, the irony would be complete.
    Either way the ECO was in breach of that case law.
    I thought that the applicant was under the burden of proof to show they meet the rules.
    “Ignorance of the law is no defence”.

  3. Based on the decisions I’ve read from ECOs it’s clear that they generally regard knowing the law as cheating. It’s just ungentlemanly.

  4. Colin I’ve just had a refusal notice from an ECO on an application for a Family Permit under SS. The applicant is in ROI with his British spouse. The ECO raised the allegation of an attempting circumventing the Immigration Rules etc. I advised on appeal but the EEA spouse thought otherwise. She wrote back to the Embassy stating that the decision was outright racist and full of lies and that her and her husband were being harassed. Unbelievably after a few days she got a response saying the decision to refuse had been reconsidered and the applicant has been invited to resubmit his passport!! I’m minded to advise on this course of action in future.

  5. Hi colin, this refusal was taken from my husbands eea family permit refusal last week in France, do you know who we send a reconsideration letter to?also, how long does it take to hear back aboutthe situation?

    Thank you

    1. I’ll get in touch separately by email. You could try a request for reconsideration (this isn’t so much as a formal legal process as a polite request) but might want to consider lodging an appeal. There is no time limit for a request for reconsideration (they may well just ignore it) but an appeal does have a framework with time limits. If there is no right of appeal, and application for judicial review may be the only remedy available.