"I have never welcomed the weakening of family ties by politics or pressure" - Nelson Mandela.
"He who travels for love finds a thousand miles no longer than one" - Japanese proverb.
"Everyone has the right to respect for his private and family life, his home and his correspondence." - Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights.
"When people's love is divided by law, it is the law that needs to change". -
David Cameron.

Wednesday 27 February 2013

Steve & Galina

“They don’t see people behind the figures and so they turn our lives into hell..”

Steve is a British citizen and 57 years old.

In March 2010, he married Galina, a Russian and 50 years old. Together, they live in Bristol.

Galina arrived in the UK as the bride of a British citizen and had a residence permit for two years, as is the norm for spouses. They followed the rules and ensured UKBA was aware of the purpose of Galina’s journey here all those years ago.

During this time, Steve and Galina lived happily. They lived together, rescued a dog from the pound, and paid their taxes. They weren’t high-earners. But they earned enough for themselves to not need to ask for any help from the state. They were happy.

At the end of the residence permit, Galina went to apply for a continuation of her residence. But the rules had changed and Steve and Galina came to face the nightmare which is the UKBA.

The rules were now such that they required a Cambridge certificate. Galina is not a young girl any
more..while she has been learning English (and well enough to send in this story to BritCits), it takes her longer to pick up things. Her memory isn’t what it once was, her life isn’t as carefree and she is just older.

The UKBA refused the extension of Galina’s visa and have made the decision to force her to leave the UK despite her ties to this country. Only because she does not have a Cambridge certificate in the English language. Galina speaks fluent Spanish. However, they feel that just because Steve is British, they are being discriminated against. They feel it’s unfair.

Indeed, it’s clear that this evident of yet further incompetency from the UKBA as Steve and Galina fall under the pre-9th July rules..however UKBA insists on applying the new rules to them, even though they submitted their applicant a month before the new rules came into play.

(To quote directly from the Statement of Intent prior to 9th July 2012 http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/sitecontent/documents/news/soi-fam-mig.pdf
Page 34 - 'Transitional arrangements' :
A fiancé(e), proposed civil partner, spouse, civil partner, unmarried partner, same sex partner, child or adult dependant with leave to enter or remain in the UK on the family route granted before 9 July 2012 will remain subject to the rules in force prior to that date. Likewise, those with leave granted before 9 July 2012 as a partner of a migrant with leave under the Points Based System, or as an adult dependant or post-flight family member of a refugee or person granted humanitarian protection in the UK, will also remain subject to the rules in force prior to that date. 

Clearly Steve and Galina should be covered under the old rules. This isn't the first time we've heard of this happening :
http://thailand-uk.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-14991.html )

There is no answer to give to Steve and Galina, as to why after three years of marriage they are now being told there are yet further hurdles to jump over, else their marriage will be considered worthless by the government.

The UKBA has generously offered that for them to not breakup their marriage, Steve could leave the UK too. However, there is no understanding for the fact that Steve and Galina look after Steve’s 90 year old mother. If Steve were to do as the government wants and leave his home, who will look after this 90 year old British woman?

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