Immigration and asylum fees in the UK are set to increase up to 500 % despite the overwhelming opposition. The government announced that it will go ahead with the proposed changes, what can result in denying justice to many vulnerable people and leave a large number of decisions unchallenged.The government’s plans for a 500% rise in fees to issue asylum and immigration claims will deny justice to many vulnerable people.
Home Office propose new changes of immigration and asylum fees in UK
The press release announced the government’s intention to:
- increase the fee for an application to the First-tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) for a decision on the papers from £80 to £490
- increase the fee for an application to the First-tier Tribunal (Immigration and Asylum Chamber) for an oral hearing from £140 to £800
- introduce a fee of £455 for an application to the First-tier Tribunal for permission to appeal to the Upper Tribunal
- introduce a fee of £350 for an application to the Upper Tribunal for permission to appeal in that Tribunal (where the application to First-tier Tribunal has been refused)
- introduce an appeal fee in the Upper Tribunal of £510
- extensions to the existing exemptions and remissions scheme that applies in the First-tier Tribunal and on whether the same scheme should apply in the Upper Tribunal
Law Society comments on proposed fee changes
The government’s plans for a five-fold rise in fees to issue asylum and immigration claims will deny justice to many vulnerable people. As a result, the Home Office’s ‘erroneous’ decisions might be left unchallenged, lawyers said on Friday.
The Law Society called on MPs to reject the planned changes in immigration and asylum fees, describing the proposal as being potentially unlawful.
The Society’s president, Robert Bourns, said that
‘the Ministry of Justice’s decision to proceed with these punitive increases-despite all the warnings about how they will hamper access to justice – is a huge setback for justice in the UK.’
Bourns also claimed that the move would “disproportionately” affect groups already vulnerable to discrimination.
‘We fear that the fee increases unlawfully discriminate, because they are likely to fall disproportionately on those with protected characteristics as defined by the Equalities Act.’
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