"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, 8 October 2014

Family permit refusal letter

Not much astounds me when it comes to appalling behaviour from the Home Office, but they sure deserve a prize for coming up with the most bizarre reasons for deportation or refusal of entry.

One I've just come across has made me so angry, I don't know whether to laugh or cry at the HO's ability to still get to me.  Perhaps because I've not been on twitter much over the last few days the frustration is on overload.  Despite that I have seen many incredibly poor reasons for refusal already, illegal reasons, this refusal letter has really got to me, because in refusing the family permit, HO cites the applicant and sponsor went to 'extensive lengths to understand fully Regulation 9.." thereby deducing that it must have been an attempt to circumvent the rules.

Oh my goodness me.  So a family which ensures they understand the rules so as to comply with them is penalised; whilst another that does not understand the complex and ever changing rules, is also penalised for not complying with the very same rules.

Home Office goes on to state that because the British sponsor's salary in France was less than their spend, they are considered to be self-sufficient not employed. Again, a stupid deduction. The EEA regs do not specify a required level of income.  They actually don't even require any employment at all for exercise of rights under Surinder Singh, as long as the initial free movement exercise was genuine and family life was created or strengthened.  So by imposing the condition of employment/self-employment in itself, I believe UK is in violation of EEA law - and I understand the European Commission has commenced infringement proceedings against the UK for it's regulation 9 requirements (centre of life).

Of course, if those who spend more than their earnings are not considered to be employed, wonder if this means the no doubt thousands of Brits living in the UK who engage in just this kind of behaviour can just claim self-sufficiency and avoid income tax and possibly even claim income-related benefits!

It just beggars belief that we live in a country where a government department can flout the law so openly, and be so uncaring of how ridiculous their reasons for refusal are.  See not just the above refusal letter, but this extract from a deportation letterthis one too,blog piece by Colin Yeo and this HO statement shared by Melanie Griffiths.

I urge anyone who finds Home Office in violation of the EEA regulations to make a complaint to Solvit.  When faced with a government that refuses to listen, holding them accountable for their behaviour may be the only way to ensure we live in a country where the government doesn't use its muscle to act unlawfully, and that it is obliged to interpret regulations in the manner intended.

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