Jul 11, 2022 - Comprehensive Sickness Insurance no longer an issue in citizenship applications for students and self-sufficient persons

Past lack of Comprehensive Sickness Insurance (CSI) is no longer an issue for EU nationals trying to get their British citizenship, revised Home Office policy says.

The Home Office has now updated a third document, the Form AN guidance, to say that CSI is in fact a non-issue:

people who did not hold comprehensive sickness insurance under the EEA regulations whilst either a student or a self-sufficient person… can now meet the lawful residence requirement simply by showing you have been granted settled status under the EU [Settlement Scheme]. You also no longer need to explain why you did not h...

Jul 06, 2022 - Home Office to offer extensions to people denied settlement

The Home Office has published guidance on when officials should vary an application for indefinite leave to remain to instead grant an extension of permission to stay (i.e. limited leave to remain). The stated rationale is to ensure that people who apply for settlement and don’t qualify, but who do qualify for limited leave to remain, are not left without immigration status.

The guidance applies to settlement applications made under:

  • Appendix Settlement Family Life
  • Appendix Private Life
  • Appendix Innovator
  • Appendix FM
  • Appendix Hong Kong British National (Overseas)

When som...

Jul 05, 2022 - Section 3C leave is not there to get people to ten years’ lawful residence

Marepally v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2022] EWCA Civ 855 is yet another long residence case, this time concerning a defective refusal notice. The appellant wanted to rely on the defect to argue that he had achieved ten years’ continuous lawful residence in the UK by operation of section 3C of the Immigration Act 1971. The Court of Appeal found that he had fallen a few weeks (if not a few years) short, and noted in passing that “the purpose of section 3C… is not to enable persons to be able to rely on continuations of leave for the purpose of building up 10 years’ continuous l...

Jul 04, 2022 - More generous Youth Mobility visas for New Zealanders

People from New Zealand are in line for more generous Youth Mobility visas, the Home Office has announced.

Kiwis will be eligible up to the age of 35 — rather than 30 for other nationalities — and be able to stay in the UK for three years rather than two. The same will apply for British people looking to go to New Zealand on a Working Holiday visa. The rules have not yet changed - “more information… will be provided next year”.

Youth Mobility visas used to be straightforward, in the sense that the rules were the same for all eligible nationalities. More recently, there has been divergence, wit...

Jul 01, 2022 - Report condemns Life in the UK test as a “random selection of obscure facts”

The Life in the UK test is a “random selection of obscure facts and subjective assertions” and needs urgent reform, a Lords committee has concluded.

Most migrants have to sit the Life in the UK test when applying for settlement or citizenship. The 24-question, multiple-choice exam is designed to ensure that “people who are committing to become British citizens have knowledge of our values, history and culture” but even the Home Secretary has described it as a “pub quiz”.

Immigration minister Kevin Foster told the Justice and Home Affairs Committee that his department plans an “in-depth review”

Jun 28, 2022 - Ukraine Family Scheme and Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme (Homes for Ukraine): visa data - as of 28 June 2022

Total Ukraine Scheme visa applications received: 168,600

Data is comprised of:

  • Ukraine Family Scheme: 50,800
  • Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme: 117,800

Total Ukraine Scheme visas issued to people: 142,500

Data is comprised of:

  • Ukraine Family Scheme visas: 44,100
  • Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme visas: 98,400

Total arrivals of visa-holders in the UK: 86,600

Data is comprised of:

  • arrivals via Ukraine Family Scheme: 27,800
  • arrivals via Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme: 58,800

Jun 22, 2022 - New amendments for unmarried partners for applications under visa schemes for Ukrainians

On 22 June 2022 the Home Office introduced amendments to define certain family relationship requirements for visas for nationals of Ukraine. 

The amendments state that unmarried partners do not necessarily need to have lived together for two years, and prove such joint cohabitation with documents for the last two years, for their relationship to be considered “durable”. 

As the Home Office guidance says, the couple “must demonstrate they have been in a relationship similar to marriage or civil partnership for at least 2 years”. This will “usually” mean cohabitation, but not necessarily.

At the...

Jun 22, 2022 - Ukrainian Refugee Children Allowed To Come To Britain Unaccompanied

Ukrainian refugee children, who apply under the Homes for Ukraine Sponsorship Scheme, will be allowed to come to Britain unaccompanied, it was announced today by the government.

The government said the UK’s Homes for Ukraine scheme would allow under 18s to come to the UK without a parent or guardian.

Hundreds of minors who fled the war without their parents have been stuck in limbo across Europe after trying to apply to the scheme.

Many are thought to be teenagers who have British families waiting to host them but have not had a response from the home office.

Children who have already applied ...

Jun 16, 2022 - UK interest rates raised to 1.25% by Bank of England

UK interest rates have risen further as the Bank of England attempts to stem the pace of soaring prices.

Rates have increased from 1% to 1.25%, the fifth consecutive rise, pushing them to the highest level in 13 years.

It comes as finances are being squeezed by the rising cost of living, driven by record fuel and energy prices.

Inflation - the rate at which prices rise - is currently at a 40-year high of 9%, and the Bank warned it could surpass 11% later this year.

The Bank said rising energy prices were expected to drive living costs even higher in October, but added it would "act forcefully"...

Jun 09, 2022 - Wales pauses super-sponsor scheme for Ukrainian refugees after being overwhelmed with applications

The Welsh Government paused its super-sponsor scheme for Ukrainian refugees. So far 480 people have arrived in the UK or Wales through the scheme. A total of 2,866 have applied to come through the scheme.

When the war broke out the Welsh Government said it would sponsor 1,000 people and provide them with accommodation, support, and care in Wales. It also removes the need for applicants to be matched to a named person before they are cleared to travel to the UK through the visa system.

The Welsh Government has said it will pause applications from this week and re-evaluate at the end of June how...