News

Apr 12, 2022 - Employment of Ukrainian nationals

In response to the evolving conflict in Ukraine, the Home Office has introduced visa schemes to support Ukrainian nationals, and their family members, to come to the UK.

Those who are granted a visa under these schemes are able to work, rent a home, and access public services, such as medical treatment and education.

On 14 February 2022, the Government announced changes to make it easier for dependants of British citizens who were resident in Ukraine to apply for a Standard Family Visa, including waiving application fees. Successful applications resulted in the person being issued with a vi...

Apr 12, 2022 - Ukrainian Displaced Persons Travel Scheme

To help Ukrainian nationals travelling to the United Kingdom, most public transport operators, including National Rail, are offering free onward travel to get you to a safe place.  The offer is valid across all National Rail train operators, light rail services and the majority of bus and coach services in England, Scotland, and Wales, and you will have 48 hours from arrival in the UK to complete your journey.

You will also be able to travel free across London using London Underground, Docklands Light Railway (DLR) and London bus and tram services so you can reach your destination as quickly a...

Apr 11, 2022 - What to do after arriving in the UK under the “Ukraine Family Scheme” and “Homes for Ukraine Scheme”?

After you receive a permission letter that you can come to the UK, you get on a plane or another type of transport and go to the UK.

At the UK border, on the basis of a previously received permission letter, you will receive a stamp in your passport for a period of six months.

After crossing the border of the country, you need to submit a new visa application for a biometric residence permit, which will eventually be issued for three years.

It is important to indicate that you need to submit such a visa application from inside the UK within six months from the date of entry into the country an...

Apr 11, 2022 - New Global Business Mobility from 11 April 2022: if you have previously had an Intra-company Transfer visa or a Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer) Long-term Staff visa

If you are already sponsored in one of these visa types you can continue working in your job until your visa expires.

If you would like to extend your visa, you will need to apply for either a Senior or Specialist Worker visa (which are the new visa categories under Global Business Mobility) that  will allow you to come to or stay in the UK to do an eligible job at your employer’s UK branch.

Senior visa and Specialist Worker visa have replaced the Intra-company Transfer visa, previously the Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer) Long-term Staff visa.

To qualify for a Senior or Specialist Worker visa,...

Apr 10, 2022 - Overturning a citizenship refusal based on character concerns is very difficult

Since the British Parliament has given the Home Office the absolute right to unilaterally refuse a Citizenship application on character concerns, it is extremely difficult for applicants to legally overturn a decision made on this basis. This is manifested in the recent Court of Appeals decision in R (Amin) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2022] EWCA Civ 439.

Background

The background of this case highlights the aforementioned point. Mr. Amin is an Iraqi national who was befriended with Mullah Krekar since the 1970s. Mullah Krekar is the leader of Ansar al Islam, which is “regarde...

Apr 09, 2022 - Legal issues for Ukrainians arriving in the United Kingdom from Ireland

There is no hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, and British and Irish citizens are able to cross the land border freely. Section 11(4) of the Immigration Act 1971 means that journeys within the Common Travel Area — both over the land border, and across the Irish Sea from Ireland to Great Britain — are “local” journeys only, and immigration issues seldom arise. 

However, Ukrainians without a valid visa cannot benefit from the legal protection of the Common Travel Area. Article 3(1)(b) of the Immigration (Control of Entry through Republic of Ireland) Order 1972 and 

Apr 08, 2022 - Ukraine Family Scheme and Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme (Homes for Ukraine): visa data - as of 08 April 2022

Total Ukraine Scheme visa applications received: 79,800

Data is as of 8 April 2022 and comprised of:

  • Ukraine Family Scheme: 36,300
  • Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme: 43,600

Total Ukraine Scheme visas issued to people: 40,900

Data is as of 8 April 2022 and comprised of:

  • Ukraine Family Scheme visas: 28,500
  • Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme visas: 12,500

Of those issued under the Sponsorship Scheme, visas issued where the sponsor was from:

  • Scotland: 570 (of which Scotland is super sponsor for 40)
  • Wales: 310
  • Northern Ireland: 90
  • England: the rest of visa applications

Total ...

Apr 07, 2022 - How the Chagossians won the right to register as British

All direct descendants of people born on the Chagos Islands will be entitled to British Overseas Territories citizenship (BOTC) as well as British citizenship (if they wish to have it), as per a registration provision included in the Nationality and Borders Bill which returns to the House of Lords later today.

The background

The Chagos Islands were once administered by Britain as part of the colony of Mauritius but were later detached and designated as British Indian Ocean Territory. The UK thereby granted their use to the US government for military purposes. Today the islands have a US milita...

Apr 06, 2022 - Immigration and nationality fees for 2022/23

The updated list of fees for immigration and nationality applications that apply from 6 April 2022 shows that most visas and extensions are up £15. Citizenship and sponsor licence rates are unchanged. 

Headline application fees had been largely frozen for the last three years following years of massive hikes, the last of which was in April 2018. But the Immigration Health Surcharge, a separate tax on visas, has increased sharply over that period, from £200 a year in 2018 to £624 a year in October 2020. This is the first financial year in many that the total cost of a typical visa has risen bel...

Apr 05, 2022 - Business travel between the UK and EU: immigration and visa rules

Before 1 January 2021, British and EU citizens did not require a visa to travel across the Channel on a business trip. This is largely still the case post-Brexit, so we’ve been left with the appearance that nothing has really changed from a legal perspective. But with the end of free movement, immigration rules between the UK and EU have fundamentally changed, and business travel is no exception. While the pandemic has hidden some of the impacts of Brexit — we haven’t been travelling to/from the EU nearly as much — the fact remains that the legal landscape has changed considerably, with increa...