The Summer of 2022 kept UK immigration advisors and Home Office at their busiest, as implementation of changes that were announced earlier in the year and began to unfold.
Nationality and Borders Act (NBA) 2022 received Royal Assent on 28th April 2022. Its commencement opened ways to many contentious changes for asylum seekers and Rules on naturalisation. NBA’s firm place was grounded through s82 consolidate legislation.
Nationality Immigration and Asylum Act (NIAA) 2002, section 72, reflects the considerations within Article 33(2) that lifts the ban on return to frontiers of territories. Where they fear persecution (‘non-refoulment’) for refugees thought on reasonable grounds to be a danger to the security of the country in which they are, or who have been convicted of a particularly serious crime. In effect, NIAA 2022 excludes from refugee status those deemed to fall within the terms of that Article. A Judge has to consider s72 before embarking on any further consideration of their asylum claim. This Summer, new criminality threshold for posing danger to the community were introduced in s72 NIAA 2002 cases.
New statutory provisions on claiming asylum were introduced as radical reforms of UK asylum procedure took place from 28 June 2022. However, as with the protocol of all new Rules, these will apply only to claims lodged from that date. UKVI Guidance Permission to stay on a protection route for asylum claims lodged on or after 28 June 2022 states that the new regime will not apply to individuals who sought to register an asylum claim before the commencement date of 28 June 2022 but were provided with an appointment to attend a designated place to register their asylum application on or after 28 June will be considered to have ‘made an asylum claim’ before the commencement date, but only if they attend their scheduled appointment (or, in the event that it is cancelled or rescheduled by the Home Office, the rescheduled appointment).
On a similar note, after the Immigration Rules changes coming into effect alongside the NBA 2022 on 28 June 2022, the Home Office sees Humanitarian Protection (HP) as purely domestic law. This has led to the downgrading of the leave granted to 30 months and reduced family reunion rights. Now two sets of Guidance on HP for claims breach and after that date Humanitarian protection in asylum claims lodged before 28 June 2022 and Humanitarian protection in asylum claims lodged on or after 28 June 2022
A certain degree of system support for those claiming Refugee status can be seen through the provision of NBA 2022. The Government has introduced, a two tier protection system under this provision whereby if the refugee has ‘come … directly’ and ‘presented themselves without delay’ to the Home Office and can show can show good cause for their unlawful entry or presence; they will gain immunity from certain penalties. A further explanation on the operation of this tier system and immunity provisions has been laid out in the Home Office Guidance Permission to Stay on a Protection Route.
Another important change to UK immigration Rules came from individual based applications under the newly introduced Appendix Private Life route. Effective from 20th June 2022, the new Appendix comes with an option for individuals to apply for Leave to Remain and Settlement under the Private Life route. The Appendix has also introduced a new category under Permission to stay and Settlement as a dependent child born in the UK to a person on the Private Life route. This provision is applicable to children who have lived in the UK under 7 years and hence do not have eligibility to stay under the private life route, but they qualify as dependents under this category due to one of the parents being granted leave under Private life route.
Dependency in EU law was redefined under the case law determination of Singh  EWCA Civ 1054. The Guidance on EEA Direct Family Members explained that a family member should be accepted as dependent where they could not meet their essential living needs, without the financial support of that person. The ruling in Singh established that education could be an aspect of ‘essential living needs’ and therefore a way of showing dependency on the direct family member.
In Business Immigration, Scale-up visa introduced from 22nd August 2022. This new route has paved way for growing UK based businesses to recruit overseas employees with lesser obstacles. In order to exercise the route, UK Company must hold a Sponsor License and must be a fast growing business. A company is allowed to engage in overseas recruitment for jobs that are eligible under the Guidance Scale-up: going rates for eligible occupations. The charm under this route is that even though Scale up workers receive leave to remain for 2 years, they can switch employers after 6 months, which is otherwise not allowed under the Skilled Worker route.
Even though the Government did show a stricter approach with NBA 2022 to asylum, Humanitarian Protection, Removals and Detention areas, positive notes were seen with new routes introduced to Business Immigration, Family Life applications and an additional path of proving dependency on EEA Family members.
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