From the 12 March 2007 the Immigration and Nationality Directorate (IND) will be operating a revised policy for handling Judicial Review challenges made after removal directions have been served. IND will give at least 72 hours notice of removal, including two full working days. The last 24 hours of the 72 hours will include a working day (to allow proceedings to be filed during this period).
The policy works in tandem with a change to paragraph 18 of the Civil Procedure Rules. IND will defer removal if an application for judicial review is made prior to removal, and a copy of the claim form as issued by the court, and a copy of the detailed statement of grounds, are received by IND. Claim forms should contain or be accompanied by the detailed statement of the claimant's grounds for bringing the claim for judicial review, or explain the reasons for non-compliance. Where there has not been compliance, removal will be deferred only where the court decides that good reason has been provided for failure to comply (and gives a direction, e.g. that detailed grounds be submitted by a specified date), or permission to proceed to judicial review is granted, or the court has not yet considered the matter by the time/date of removal. In such circumstances it will be necessary to defer until the court has reached a decision.
The Administrative Court may issue an order when refusing judicial review that the claim is without merit, in which case IND will notify the individual that removal will not be deferred pending any application for oral renewal.
The Home Office policy
The new Practice Direction
In F, R (on the application of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWHC 407 (Admin) (06 March 2007) the Administrative Court rejected a challenge to the rationality of the well known Home Office Policy on asylum seeker families with children. Whilst a claimant can be said to have a stronger claim to the grant of leave than some of those who are within the policy, the policy was not intended to identify all those in the backlog who had a compassionate case to remain, nor was it predicated on the aim that each individual falling within it would have a stronger case for leave than any individual outside its terms. Read the transcript
In Kurtaj (R on the application of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department  EWHC 221 (Admin) the Administrative Court revisited the law regarding mental health cases in which the Claimant evinced a risk of suicide. The fact that a fear of persecution abroad might be objectively unfounded was of little, if any, consequence where the asylum seeker suffered from a mental illness which is characterised by fundamental distortion of thinking and perception. Read the transcript
In Bapio Action Ltd & Anor, R (on the application of) v Secretary of State for the Home Department & Anor  EWHC 199 (Admin) (09 February 2007) Stanley Burnton J found that Parliament has not imposed an obligation to consult on changes to the Immigration Rules on the Home Secretary; nor was there any established practice to consult on changes to the Immigration Rules dealing with International Medical Graduates. However in the circumstances there was to be a declaration that the Secretary of State for the Home Department had failed to comply with his duty under section 71 of the Race Relations Act 1976 before deciding to make the changes in the Immigration Rules for Postgraduate Doctors and Dentists that took effect on 3 April 2006. Read the transcript
In AB (Protection, criminal gangs, internal relocation) Jamaica CG  UKAIT 00018 the Tribunal commented on country of origin information experts, found that the Jamaican state has both the willingness and ability to protect in cases where persons will be admitted into their Witness Protection programme, and that internal relocation was likely to be available, with the standard caveats on exceptional cases. Read the transcript
In PG and VG (EEA; "direct descendants" includes grandchildren) Portugal  UKAIT 00019 the Tribunal found that the ordinary natural meaning of "direct descendants" in English and in the EEA Regulation 2006 includes children and grandchildren (to the nth generation), but excludes (great) nieces and nephews. Read the transcript
In TB (EEA national: leave to remain?) Nigeria  UKAIT 00020 the Tribunal found that a person who had held a right of residence as the dependant of an EEA national could not qualify for the grant of leave to remain as the unmarried partner of a person present and settled in the United Kingdom under paragraph 295D of HC 395, because they lacked limited leave to remain given under the provisions of the Immigration Rules. Read the transcript
In SP and Others (Tibetan, Nepalese departure, illegal, risk) People's Republic of China CG  UKAIT 00021 the Tribunal found that worship of the Dalai Lama is inextricably linked, in the minds of the Chinese authorities, with Tibetan nationalism. Those who exit the country along the Tibet/Nepal route are not only considered opponents of the Chinese authorities for religious reasons but also as supporters of a separate Tibet and are likely to face ill-treatment which amounts to torture. It was important for an Immigration Judge to make findings on the lawfulness of a Tibetan asylum seeker's exit from the country. Read the transcript
In AP (Withdrawals-nullity assessment) Pakistan  UKAIT 00022 the Tribunal considered the circumstances in which a purported withdrawal of an appeal could be recognized as void, leaving the appeal extant before the Tribunal. Ruling that there was jurisdiction to consider the question, they indicated that where a withdrawal application is later claimed to be invalid, the matter will be set down for a preliminary hearing with appropriate directions to both parties, addressing matters such as the need to put the Appellant's case to a previous legal representative responsible for a disputed withdrawal. Read the transcript
In G v Secretary of State for the Home Department  UKSIAC 2/2005 (08 February 2007) the Special Immigration Appeals Commission referred to the fact that Algerian Government has given the UK Government assurances as to the treatment of its citizens suspected of terrorism who are returned there. The Commission found these reliable: albeit that in their absence there would be a real risk that on his return to Algeria that terrorist suspects would be tortured or subject to other ill-treatment. Read the transcript
On 20 March 2007 ILPA will hold a course on Race Discrimination and Immigration at the St Bride Institute, London .
Contact their training department via www.ilpa.org.uk or 0207 251 8383
On 30 March 2007 HJT Training plan to hold a conference on country of origin information featuring expert witnesses and lawyers speaking on Pakistan, China, Democratic Republic of Congo, Eritrea and Iraq.
Book via www.hjt-training.co.uk or 0208 303 3013