7 APRIL 2010: Tier 4 rule changes for education providers and migrant students
The immigration rules now include rules which govern a highly trusted sponsor licence and only those institutions with such a licence can offer restricted courses. If a student is studying on a restricted course and the institution does not hold a highly trusted sponsor licence, the student can finish the course of study or complete permission to stay until their Tier 4 visa expires, whichever is the sooner. If a student wishes to extend their stay on an affected course the student must find a course at an institution which has a highly trusted sponsor licence. Tier 4 sponsor licences can only offer courses at level 4. Only degree or foundation courses can offer work placements. Read more...
7 APRIL 2010: Changes to the immigration rules in respect of Tier 1 and 2 of points based system
Some of the changes include:
1. New points criteria for both Tier 1 and Tier 2
2. A simpler route for very highly skilled workers without masters degrees
3. Greater flexibility for short-term transfers by multinational companies
6 APRIL 2010: New lower age for marriage visas for serving members of the armed forces and their partners
The immigration rules have been changed to lower the age for marriage visas for serving members of the armed forces and their partners. This change only applies to armed forces and their partners. The marriage visa age remains 21 for all other British citizens or settled partners and their families. Read more...
R on the application of ZA (Nigeria) v SSHD: R on the application of SM (Congo) v SSHD  EWHC 718 (Nigeria)
A decision that a further submission does not amount to a fresh claim was not an immigration decision within the meaning of S82 NIAA 2002 and therefore did not attract an in-country right of appeal.
The claimants were both refused and failed asylum seekers who had entered the UK illegally. Both of their asylum appeals were refused and they had exhausted their appeal rights. Both had formed relationships in the UK: one had had a relatively "short lived" relationship and had lived with his unmarried partner, a refugee from the DRC, as man and wife for four months. ZA had a young baby with his partner. Both made further submissions based on their Article 8 ECHR rights. The SSHD rejected these submissions on the basis that they were not fresh claims but just a repetition of earlier claims. Both claimants asserted that they had in-country rights of appeal [S82 NIAA 2002]. The claimants sought judicial review of the decision. The Administrative Court accepted the argument that SSHD had made a rational decision when concluding that these were repeat claims rather than appealable immigration decisions. The SSHD accepted that both claimants had established family ties in the UK within the meaning of Article 8 ECHR. Even though there would be interference with family life, they knew they had exhausted their rights of appeal when they established these relationships, and they had no basis for leave to remain in the UK. The public interest in removing foreign nationals who do not qualify for leave to remain and refuse to leave is well established and outweighed the interference that would be caused to their Article 8 ECHR rights. Read more...
R (on the application of Albertina Ferreira Malungu) v SSHD  EWHC 684 (Admin) 31.3.2010
The claimant made a fresh asylum claim following a refusal of asylum. Following her refusal of asylum she was detained pending removal. She made fresh representations for asylum, based upon a report from a nurse from a human rights charity concerning the claimant's mental health and scarring. The claimant had never mentioned torture or mental illness before. The Secretary of State rejected the representations. The claimant brought judicial review proceedings on the basis that her detention was unlawful. The Court found that the claimant's detention was not unlawful. The Court found that the nurse's report did not provide independent evidence of torture because the nurse did not have qualifications as an expert on psychiatric illness and had written the report without appearing to know that the claimant had been found to be an untruthful witness and appeared to take everything at face value. Although she did identify scars, the report depended upon believing the claimant's account of the injuries causing the scars. The policy on detention was not absolute i.e. it contemplated detention being maintained in exceptional circumstances, and there seemed to be relevant factors such as the claimant's efforts to resist removal that may have justified continued detention.