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Immigration Act 2014: removals and nationality provisions


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This post is a brief summary of the removals and nationality provisions of the Immigration Act 2014, and is accompanied by an audio extract from a seminar given by Colin Yeo, Sadat Sayeed, Mark Symes and I at Garden Court Chambers on 13 August 2014, at which I spoke on these subjects. Colin posted his segment of the seminar here, and the final two segments will follow in due course.


Section 1 Immigration Act 2014 repeals and replaces section 10 Immigration Act 1999. Under the new provision, any person with no leave who is required to have it may simply be removed from the United Kingdom with no further notice or legal step being required. The new provision should be seen as a simple power to remove rather than a type or species of immigration decision: there is no right of appeal under the new appeals provisions (although any intimation that the power is going to be exercised would demonstrate that a decision has been made in the public law sense, and that decision could, theoretically, be challenged by way of judicial review). Not yet in force.

Section 2 Immigration Act 2014 provides for a 28 day grace period from exhaustion of appeal rights in which actual removal is forbidden for the child and for the adult where ‘if, as a result, no relevant parent or carer would remain in the United Kingdom’. In force.

Section 3 Immigration Act 2014 places the Independent Family Returns Panel on a statutory footing. The Secretary of State is obliged to consult the panel when considering a family return or detaining a family in pre-departure accommodation. This is duty to consult the panel, and does not give rise to an obligation to follow its recommendations. In force.


Before 1 July 2006, for the purposes of British nationality law, a biological mother was always considered to be a child’s parent, whether married or unmarried to the child’s biological father, but a biological father who was not married to the child’s biological mother was not. On 1 July 2006, this injustice was remedied for those born on or after that date, by way of an amendment to the British Nationality Act 1981. However, that amendment did nothing for those born before 1 July 2006. Section 65 Immigration Act 2014 operates to amend the British Nationality Act 1981 in order to cure the injustice for those born before 1 July 2006. Not yet in force.

By Stratforder (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia CommonsSection 66 Immigration Act 2014 confers on the Secretary of State enhanced citizenship deprivation powers by introducing a new subsection (4A) into section 40 British Nationality Act 1981. It is now in force, and allows the Secretary of State to deprive an individual of citizenship, even if it would result in their becoming stateless, where three conditions are met:

  • The citizenship status results from the person’s naturalisation;
  • The Secretary of State is satisfied that the deprivation is conducive to the public good because the person, while having that citizenship status, has conducted him or herself in a manner which is seriously prejudicial to the vital interests of the UK; and,
  • The Secretary of State has reasonable grounds for believing that the person is able, under the law of a country or territory outside the United Kingdom, to become a national of such a country or territory.
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Picture of Bijan Hoshi

Bijan Hoshi

Bijan is a barrister practicing in public law and human rights at Garden Court Chambers. He undertakes work in all areas of immigration, asylum and nationality law.


12 Responses

  1. Any more details about this would be much appreciated. Your remark above “Not yet in force” is a bit vague. Do you have any sense of when this new rule allowing a child born before 2006 to claim British Nationality through the father will take effect?

  2. I’m curious. Why so quiet about Labour’s several purposely missed opportunities to allow citizenship for children born before 1 July 2006 to unmarried British fathers? I’m especially concerned with the lack of outcry against then Immigration Minister, Phil Woolas, for his refusals and him calling children born out of wedlock gaining human rights, a “step into the unknown” (check Hansard). You know very well that had any other party uttered that phrase, or directed it towards another minority group, this site would have been all over them, deriding every word.

    Let’s not forget Woolas’ refusal to register the birth of William Watrin-Cattrall, even though Alison Seabeck MP continued to raise the issue with him several times (check Hansard), confirming to many that the registration system Labour continually defended was a complete sham and that people were slipping under it, despite Lord Brett’s fierce defense of the system.

    You were never vocal for us. Why? What gives? Where is our justice?

    1. I’m very sorry you feel that way. Since 2007 I have done my best to campaign on immigration and asylum issues in my spare time on this blog and it painful to me to be accused of doing too little. For what it is worth, as a member of ILPA I strongly support their activity and it was ILPA that brought about the most recent amendment for those born before 2006.

    1. Sorry, no. We think that a raft of measures will take effect on 20 October 2014 but (a) that is a guess and (b) there is no indication it will include s.65

  3. Many thanks. I have a client who is about to apply for his son to be registered on this basis. I was going to suggest he put the application on hold but may be worth proceeding rather than waiting.

  4. When you say that there’s no indication that section 65 will be included, do you mean that there has been talk of including other provisions but not that one, or that it simply isn’t clear what will be included? In other words, are the chances of 65 being included worse than the chances of something else being included?

    In other news, how unfortunate that something ‘unfriendly’ such as deprivation of citizenship ‘commenced’ in a hurry but something ‘friendly’ like section 65, which harmlessly rectifies a deeply painful, shamefully archaic and utterly unnecessary injustice against innocent people, is being delayed indefinitely for no apparent reason. Priorities…

    Thanks for your help!

    1. The indications (and they are only indications) are that the appeal provisions will be commenced from 20th October 2014. Section 65 is not an appeal provision (nor is it linked to the appeal provisions: the changes to removal will presumably commence at the same time as the changes to appeals, for example). So we are even more in the dark about its commencement than the appeal provisions

  5. I have a significant interest in section 65. Is there any way to encourage action on this section of the act? Do such things as questions in the press, letters from MPs, or questions to ministers help or hinder the enactment of this seemingly innocuous provision?

    From where I’m standing the whole government process in this matter appears utterly disorganized, monumentally inefficient, and totally cack-handed.

  6. Why after all this time is no one looking at the wholly discriminatory wording of immigration legislation which makes amendments and provision to Nationality legislation to exclude certain persons who are or were Citizens Of the UK and Colonies from obtaining British Citizenship simply because they may not have a parent or grandparent born in the UK itself. Whilst some provisions have been made to include the remaining overseas territories into the inclusiveness for nationality purposes allowing them full British Citizenship, there remains a historical injustice for those of British Overseas Territories who are now independent commonwealth countries (St Christopher and Nevis) for instance.

    where Citizens of the UK and Colonies who were born in a UK colony (St.Christopher and Nevis) which may now be independent. Although, said person has become a British Citizen by virtue of having the right of abode (5 year residence in the UK as CUKC) in the UK and while having that right to abode in the UK from birth in a colony before the 1971 Act. He had a child born in a British Colony (Nevis) also a CUKC at birth. At the child birth in 1955 her father was a CUKC with the right to live and work in the UK as there were no restrictions on CUKC’s (Right of Abode)

    Because the wording of the 1971 act and the applications for the Right of Abode in the UK says. Born, Registered or Naturalized in the UK.

    My Grandfather, although born a British Subject in 1930 in the Colony of Nevis, became a CUKC 01.01.1949
    and continued to have a right of abode in the UK by virtue of living in the UK from the mid 1950’s onwards as a CUKC. he Was not required or allowed to Register or Naturalize. which was the Situation for many CUKC’s hos migrated to the UK from colonies. My Grandfather is now a British Citizen under Section 11 BNA 1981.

    If my grandfather was a foreign national or alien of Colombia or Russia and had Naturalized as a British Citizen at that time I would be able to make an application within the wording of section 2, immigration act 1971.


    From 1713 to 31.12.1948, St Christopher & Nevis was within the Crown’s Dominions.

    Between 01.01.1949 and 18.12.1980, it was within the UK and Colonies as part of the Colony of St Christopher-Nevis-Anguilla (up to 26.02.1967) and the Associated State of St Christopher-Nevis-Anguilla (up to 18.12.1980).

    From 19.12.1980 until 31.12.1982 it was within the UK and Colonies as an associated state.

    From 01.01.1983 until 18.09.1983, it was a British Dependent Territory.

    From 19.09.1983 until the present day, it was an independent Commonwealth country.