The Ministry of Justice has announced a new consultation regarding further reform to legal aid provision. The proposals include a residence test for civil legal aid claimants; reforms to reduce the use of legal aid to fund 'weak' judicial reviews; significant reductions in fee rates for judicial review; amendments to the civil merits test to prevent the funding of any cases with less than a 50% chance of success and removal of the 35% uplift in the Upper Tribunal. The deadline for responding to this consultation is 4 June 2013.
London Metropolitan University has been issued with a new temporary Tier 4 sponsor's licence. For full details, click here.
Immigration Law Cases
Bibi & Anor, R (on the application of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWCA Civ 322
12 April 2013
By a majority decision (Sir David Keene dissenting) the Court of Appeal held that the English language requirements for an application for leave to enter as a spouse or civil partner, pursuant to Paragraph 281 HC 395, did not amount to a disproportionate interference into rights protected under Art 8 ECHR. Moreover, the requirement had both a rational and proportionate justification for the purpose of any perceived discrimination for the purpose of Art 14/Art 8 ECHR. Sir David Keene, in his dissenting judgement, considered that the Secretary of State had not made out a case regarding the problem the English language requirement was meant to resolve or why, bearing in mind the low level of English needed to meet the test, it was likely to make any difference. Click here to read the full judgment.
DSG & Others (Afghan Sikhs: departure from CG) Afghanistan  UKUT 148 (IAC)
8 April 2013
A Tribunal Judge can depart from existing country guidance in the circumstances described in Practice Direction 12.2 and 12.4 and the UT (IAC) Guidance Note 2011, no. 2, paragraphs 11 and 12. Click here to read the full judgment.
Farquharson (removal - proof of conduct) Jamaica  UKUT 146 (IAC)
8 April 2013
Where the respondent relies on allegations of conduct in proceedings for removal, the same principles apply as to proof of conduct and the assessment of risk to the public, as in deportation cases. A criminal charge that has not resulted in a conviction is not a criminal record, but the acts that led to the charge may be established as conduct. If the respondent seeks to establish the conduct by reference to the contents of police CRIS reports, the relevant documents should be produced, rather than a bare witness statement referring to them. Click here to read the full judgment.
JL (medical reports-credibility) China  UKUT 145 (IAC)
8 April 2013
For the preparation of medical reports, it is advisable that the writer is provided with any assessments that have already been made of the appellant's credibility by the immigration authorities and/or a tribunal judge. The writer of the report need to understand that what is expected of them is a critical and objective analysis of the injuries and/or symptoms displayed. They should also bear in mind that when an advocate wishes to rely on their medical report to support the credibility of an appellant's account, they will be expected to identify what about it affords support to what the appellant has said. For their part, judges should be aware that, whilst the overall assessment of credibility is for them, medical reports may well involve assessments of the compatibility of the appellant's account with physical marks or symptoms, or mental condition. Click here to read the full judgment.
OO (gay men: risk) Algeria CG  UKUT 63 (IAC)
8 April 2013
"Sodomy" and "acts against nature with a member of the same sex" are illegal under Penal Code Article 388 and 333 in Algeria and on conviction carry a criminal sentence of up to three years imprisonment and/or a fine. However criminal prosecutions are extremely rare. The evidence does not suggest that, as a general matter, societal and familial disapproval of male gay identity in Algeria reaches levels that are persecutory and there is evidence that there are a small number of gay men living openly in Algeria. If somebody is able to establish that their behaviour was shaped by more than disapproval amounting to serious harm, they may be able to establish a need for protection. Click here to read the full judgment.
K and others (FGM) Gambia CG  UKUT 62 (IAC)
9 April 2013
Country guidance found that FGM was widespread in Gambia, although its incidence varied from ethnic group to ethnic group. However, the evidence did not demonstrate that all females in The Gambia are, as such, at real risk of FGM. The assessment of risk is likely to involve consideration of ethnic group (whether parental or marital), the attitudes of parents, husband and wider family and socio-economic milieu. There is little to suggest that a female at risk of FGM would be able to avail herself of meaningful state protection or safe internal relocation. Click here to read the full judgment.
Leyla Ecem Demirkan v Federal Republic of Germany  EUECJ C-221/11
11 April 2013
A Turkish national sought to rely on the 'standstill clause', pursuant to Article 41(1) of the Additional Protocol of the EEC-Turkey Association Agreement, in arguing that she did not need to apply for a visit visa in order to enter Germany for a period of up to three months as a visitor. However it was the Advocates General's opinion that the 'passive freedom to enjoy services' (as per Article 56 TFEU) did not include a right to enter an EU Member State as a visitor and therefore the Additional Protocol did not apply. Click here to read the full judgment.
Immigration Law Training
Challenging decisions of the First Tier Tribunal (IAC): procedure and practice.
Tuesday 16 April 2012, JCWI, London
Click here for more information.
ILPA Training: Indefinite leave to remain
Wednesday 17 April 2013
ILPA will be running a course on indefinite leave to remain in central London. Click here for more information.
ILPA Training: Implementing and Delivering Free Movement of EU Workers and Citizens in the UK
Friday 19 April ILPA
A full day conference on Implementing and Delivering Free Movement of EU Workers and Citizens in the UK. Click here for more information.
HTJ Training : The Secret of Success at the First-tier Tribunal
Wednesday 1 May 2013
David Jones of Garden Court Chambers and HJT Training presents a course dealing with all aspects of advocacy in immigration first instance cases. Click here for more information.
HTJ Training: Unlawful Detention
Thursday 2 May 2013
HTJ will be running a course on all aspects of running unlawful detention cases. Click here for more information.
JCWI Training: Tier 2 and the New April 2013 Changes - what you need to know
Wednesday 15 May 2013
Rimmy Bedi of Magrath LLP and Navtej Singh Ahluwalia of Garden Court Chambers provide training on the effect of the recent developments on the Tier 2 requirements from April 2013.
Click here for more information.
Immigration Law Books
Garden Court Chambers Immigration Team members are authors of numerous books which we mention from time to time.
Immigration Practice and Procedure in Family Proceedings
This practical new work by Nadine Finch, Omar Shibli, Anthony Vaughan concentrates on the immigration procedures, law and rules relevant to family proceedings. Price: £60.00. For full details click here.
Asylum Law and Practice (2nd edition)
The second edition of Asylum Law and Practice by Mark Symes and Peter Jorro is published, and has been described as "pre-eminent" by Lord Brown. Price: £138.00. For full details, click here.
Fransman's British Nationality Law (3rd edition)
The third edition of Fransman's British Nationality Law, written by Laurie Fransman QC and with contributions from Adrian Berry and Alison Harvey, was published in spring 2011. Price: £295.00. For full details, click here.
Macdonald's Immigration Law & Practice (8th edition)
The eighth edition of Macdonald's Immigration Law & Practice was written by Ian Macdonald QC with contributions from many members of the Garden Court Immigration Team. Price: £230.00. For full details, click here.