UNITED KINGDOM: Statement of Changes to the Immigration Rules March 2022 | Additional Changes

March 24, 2022

Following the Home Office’s Statement of Changes of 15 March 2022, in this alert we focus on scheduled miscellaneous administrative policy changes to the Immigration Rules.

  1. Permission to Stay Outside the UK

Effective from: 6 April 2022

Summary of changes: Applicants cannot change or extend applications for leave to remain from outside the UK.

Analysis: This removes a difficult and rarely used discretionary route. Applicants outside the UK are still able to extend their permission by submitting an Entry Clearance application within 14 days of their permissions expiry. For the purposes of continuous residence, this is treated as a continuous period of permission.

  1. Valid Applications where Fee Waivers apply

Effective from: 6 April 2022

Summary of changes: Includes the exception that a valid application for Leave to Remain does not require fees to paid in full if they have been granted a fee waiver.

  1. Definition of Fee Waiver

Effective from:  20 June 2022

Summary of changes: a definition of “fee waiver” has been added to the rules: “a decision by the Secretary of State that the usual fee in relation to an immigration function need not be paid or need only be paid in specified part.”

  1. Multiple Applications

Effective from: 6 April 2022

Summary of changes:

Confirmation of the exceptions to the rule that, when multiple applications are made, only the latest application will be considered.

These exceptions are:

  • when multiple applications are made under Immigration Rules Appendix EU – relating to EU, EEA, Swiss citizens and family members of qualifying British citizens;
  • while a human rights application is being considered, an application made after will not stop the human rights claims provided the later application is refused, and the human rights claim was not considered in the later application

Analysis: the above exceptions, which are not accurately described in the current rules, will bring clarity.

  1. Extended circumstances for Rejections of Dependant Applications

Effective from: 6 April 2022

Summary of changes: the circumstances for an application of a dependent to be rejected as invalid (rather than refused) have been extended. When an application is rejected as invalid, the application fee is refunded, minus a £25 administrative fee. A dependent child or partners application will only be valid where the main applicant:

  • has an ongoing application which has yet to be decided;
  • has been granted permission in the relevant route; or
  • where the route provides for it, is already settled or a British Citizen and the applicant had permission as their dependant when they settled on the route under which the applicant is now applying

  1. Changes in relation to No Recourse to Public Funds and Children’s Welfare

Effective from: 20 June 2022

Summary of changes: clarifications of when the welfare of a child outweighs denying or continuing to deny their access to public funds. It also clarifies the child must be 18 at the date of the application, and it must be clear they will be affected by the No Access to Public Funds decision.

  1. Updates to Continuous Leave in relation to Crown service

Effective from:  20 June 2022

Summary of changes: Partners of applicants employed on “Crown service” will not be prevented from meeting their Continuous Residence Requirements due to absences when accompanying the applicant posted overseas. These absences are not counted towards requirement to not leave the UK for more than 180 days within any 12-month period.  “Crown service” covers employment by HM Armed Forces, Employees of UK Government, Northern Ireland department, Scottish Administration, Welsh Government or permanent members of the British Council).

  1. Administrative Review Applications

Effective from: 6 April 2022

Summary of changes: clarifications are being introduced on when an administrative review under Appendix AR (EU), and certain eligible decisions under Appendix AR, are treated as withdrawn. Specifically, it provides that applications for administrative review are not treated as withdrawn where the applicant, while their administrative review claim is yet to be determined, requests for the return of their passport for the purpose of travel outside the UK, exits the UK, or applies for entry clearance, leave to enter or leave to remain, when the administrative review application is made pursuant to:

  1. Appendix AR (EU); or
  2. Appendix AR, where the decision being reviewed is a decision to do one of the following:
    1. cancel leave to enter or remain which is in force under paragraph A3.2(b) of Annex 3 to Appendix EU or paragraph A3.4(b) of Annex 3 to Appendix EU (Family Permit);
    2. cancel permission to enter or permission to stay which is in force under paragraph HV 11.1(c) of Appendix S2 Healthcare Visitor; or
    3. cancel permission to enter which is in force under paragraph SPS 9.1(c) of Appendix Service Providers from Switzerland.

Organisations and individuals impacted by this development are encouraged to contact a Newland Chase immigration specialist for case-specific advice. For general advice and information on immigration and business travel to the UK, please contact us.

This immigration update is for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for legal or scenario-specific advice. Furthermore, it is important to note that immigration announcements are subject to sudden and unexpected changes. Readers are encouraged to reach out to Newland Case for any case- or company-specific assessments.