#Article (Archive)

New Rules for UK Immigration

Jul 14, 2008, 6:51 AM

In what is seen as a bid to further tighten its immigration policy, the government of United Kingdom has introduced new immigration rules regarding re-entry into the UK, stipulating provisions to ban return for people (for varied periods) who happen to break its immigration laws.

The new rules, according to a letter addressed to the Gambian High Commission in UK from the UK Managed Migration Policy, introduces a change to the way in which the UK treats applications to return to the UK from people who have breached immigration laws in the past by overstaying their visas.

The new Immigration Rules on this subject, which came into force on 1 April, have two main purposes. Firstly they are to provide a stronger sanction for breaches of the UK Immigration laws- reinforcing the message that new visitors to Britain should obey the law or face the consequences.

The second purpose, according to the letter, is to give migrants who are in the UK illegally a clear incentive to go home of their own accord, by subjecting those who do so to a much shorter ban than they would receive if they waited for the UK Borders Agency to remove them.

The new rules, the letter went on, provides that anyone who has previously used deception in an entry clearance application will have all future applications to enter the UK refused for ten years. "Anyone who has previously breached our Immigration laws in any other way (that is, by overstaying, entering the UK illegally, telling lies in an Immigration application or breaching the conditions of their leave- e.g. by working illegally) will be banned from returning for the following periods, depending on how they left the UK following their breach:

1 year if they left voluntarily at their own expense;

5 years if they left voluntarily at public expense; and

10 years if they were removed or deported", the letter added.

The letter went further to note that in order to reinforce its objective of encouraging people to go home of their own accord, UK have announced that it will not apply these new rules to anyone who was in the UK on 17 March 2008, and who goes home of his or her own accord before 1 October 2008.

"In effect, we are giving anyone here illegally a last chance to go before the new rules kick off. If they leave before 1 October we will not automatically apply the ban to them, though they will still need to meet the other requirements of the Immigration rules if they wish to obtain a visa" the letter indicated.