Changes to the Immigration Rules for Permit Free Festivals

The list of permit free festivals is set out in Appendix 5 to Appendix V of the Immigration Rules. Festivals and events which are included on this list are able to invite entertainers or artists to take part in their event without the need to issue a certificate of sponsorship under the points based system. Where entertainers or artists are established professionals it may also be possible for them to use the visitors undertaking permitted paid engagement route.

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Changes to Immigration Rules for overstayers

Any non-EEA national who has remained in the UK beyond the validity of their visa (without having submitted a valid application for extension prior to expiry) is considered to be an 'overstayer'.  

In a tightening of the Immigration Rules announced on 16 March and due to come in to force on 6 April 2017, the government has now reduced the period of time of 'accepted' overstaying that would not lead to a significant re-entry ban.  

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European Passport Return Service

This is an updated version of a post previously published on 30 January 2017. 

European nationals wanting to keep hold of their passports while waiting for the outcome of an application for a registration certificate or document certifying permanent residence are now able to submit their application online and make arrangements for their passport to be officially photocopied for the Home Office by a local authority. This is useful for anyone who would like to travel whilst their application is outstanding. Applications often take several months to be processed, which can disrupt travel plans or cause problems for those that need to travel abroad for work. 

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EEA Citizens living in the UK & Permanent residency

Many EEA nationals are making permanent residency applications in the wake of the Brexit vote and in the hope that this brings with it some sense of security. Indeed permanent residence is a prerequisite for anyone looking to naturalise as a British Citizen. SeeThe British Nationality (General) (Amendment No. 3) Regulations 2015

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Insurmountable obstacles and exceptional circumstances in the Supreme Court

n addition to the judgement in  R (on the application of MM (Lebanon)) v Secretary of State for the Home Department published today, covered on this blog here, the Supreme Court has handed down judgement in R (on the application of Agyarko) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2017] UKSC 11 today.

Like MM (Lebanon) this case was concerned with whether provisions of the Immigration Rules are compatible with Article 8 of the ECHR.  Specifically the court considered whether the requirement for foreign spouses of British citizens, who have resided unlawfully in the UK, to demonstrate “insurmountable obstacles” to family life continuing outside the UK was lawful. This requirement is imposed by paragraph EX.1.(b) of Appendix FM of the Immigration Rules. The court also considered whether the Home Office’s policy of granting leave to remain outside the Rules only in “exceptional circumstances” was lawful.

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Supreme Court rules on minimum income requirement and Appendix FM rules in R (on the application of MM (Lebanon)) (Appellant) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (Respondent)

Supreme Court rules on minimum income requirement and Appendix FM rules in R (on the application of MM (Lebanon)) (Appellant) v Secretary of State for the Home Department (Respondent)

In its long-awaited judgment handed down today, the Supreme Court has dismissed the appeals in the MM (Lebanon) cases.  These were a series of conjoined cases challenging the £18,600 minimum income requirement ('MIR') introduced in July 2012 as part of 'Appendix FM' to the Immigration Rules, along with the the Immigration Directorate Instruction on family migration giving guidance to entry clearance officers ('the Instructions').

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Supreme Court holds that legislation is required to trigger Article 50

Last week the Supreme Court issued its judgement in R (Miller) v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union [2017] UKSC 5.  

As observed by Steve Peers, in a succinct summary of the constitutional considerations at play, the case:

“...raised deep questions about a number of developing tensions in the fabric of British constitutional law: between direct and representative democracy; between Parliament and executive; and between devolved powers and UK-wide government. To every question, the answer was, in effect: the Westminster Parliament.” (see here)

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