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Ministers plan to shut down what many see as an immigration loophole which grants illegal immigrants a permanent stay in the UK after 14 years whether they entered the UK legally or not, the Telegraph reports.

Under a controversial concession, those who elude the authorities for 14 years can apply for indefinite leave to stay in the UK.

Almost 9,000 illegal immigrants have been granted such a right since the policy was introduce by Labour in 2003.

But the Home Office now aims to end the policy as part of a wider move to restrict the use of the “family life” defence for those fighting removal from the country.

Theresa May, the Home Secretary, said earlier this month that it is not an “absolute right” and that officials were closely examining the definition to see if there is scope to limit its use and give more weight to the public interest.

Mrs May is concerned that foreign criminals and illegal immigrants are increasingly using the right as a way of fighting deportation.

And ministers believe that any new interpretation of the right – Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights – would also allow an end to the 14 year rule.

A Home Office consultation document on the future of all family visas said: “We suggest that those who wish to settle in the UK on the grounds of private or family life should be upfront about their intentions and make an appropriate application to the UK Border Agency.

“Settlement in the UK is a privilege. It should not be achieved simply by evading our detection for a number of years.

“We will therefore consider the impact of our Article 8 proposals on the need to retain the 14-year long residence rule.”

Damian Green, the immigration minister, said last night: “I am determined to take steps to close the loopholes that have been exploited for too long.

“The right to a family life is not absolute and the interests of the British public must be taken into consideration when deciding who can enter and remain in the UK.

“Those who enter the country illegally or overstay their visa should not be automatically rewarded with the privilege of settlement just because they have avoided detection for years.” Source: The Telegraph.

The 14 year rule is a form of amnesty which allows overstayers to legalise their stay in the UK. It is not automatically granted.

Nobody really knows how many “irregular migrants” there are in the UK, but one recent estimate by the London School of Economics put it at 618,000 – within a range of 417,000 to 863,000.

Last year shortly before joining a conservative led coalition to form a government, the Liberal Democrats said that it was now time to “regularise” those who have been here longest, so they can integrate into the legal economy and contribute to the exchequer by paying taxes.

They also called it an “earned route to citizenship”, but had no idea how many people would qualify.

Their pre-government manifesto, since largely discarded, said: “We will allow people who have been in Britain without the correct papers for 10 years, but speak English, have a clean record and want to live here long-term to earn their citizenship. This route to citizenship will not apply to people arriving after 2010.”

Their is also a 10 year concession for those who have been in the UK legally for ten years or more, such as students.

Jerry Turner, a Level 3 Immigration Adviser for Bison UK believes the government may have difficulty in abolishing the 14 year rule. He said: 

“In the opinion of a leading immigration barrister there is a provision in European law which would make it difficult to do away with the 14 year concession.

“They stand more chance of abolishing the 10 year lawful residence rule as this would not conflict with European law.”

See also:

UK Government launches far reaching consultation on family migration

Government accused of creating an ‘amnesty’ for asylum seekers, but 14 year long stay rule already exists

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18 Responses to “14 Year Long Stay Immigration Concession to be closed”
Read them below or add one

  1. merando_77@hotmail.com'

    im in uk from 2000 im saylum and i dont have any britsh citezinshep so what is my rool pleas

  2. Ghansham1972@yahoo.co.uk'

    Ok. I living 15??year. No. Stella. Some get. Passport befor. 10 year. Some mitred. Urpen what. This. Pls help. Me any. I change my louder. Olrady. Thanks

  3. desiree_stuart@zoho.com'

    This text is worth everyone’s attention. Where can I find out more?

  4. euukimmigration@gmail.com'

    Tony, I think you could do with some English punctuation!

  5. davidbronx94@yahoo.com'

    I have lived in the UK for a number of yrs and it is very important that the english protect their interests but where there has been blunders by ukba or rather the old ind as humanbeings lives have been done on lottery to choose who lives and who is going wrong leave to remain issed to nationals who are not from where they say and we have watched a lot over the yrs as governments change and we slowly turn into citizens of a society that even refuses to accept you for your race leave alone the leave to remain you are after well UK is considered a equal for all anyway but un this day and age of a civilised society my daughter has to grow up knowing her father was subjected to certain life we are watching carefully at the violation or discrimination of human beings and one day the truth will come to light

  6. venese@hotmail.co.uk'
    venese@hotmail.co.uk'camille says :

    I have been her as a student but as apply for a spouse visa. my son dad is her but got married to a british lady after we have split… He was marride to her for 6yrs but the marrige as broken down after she got pregnant for another guy so he went back home to his birth country. After 2yrs he enter the back the uk and claim asylum as he had over said on his previus visa before he got marride. his application was granted under the human right protection. we applied for our biological son together who was back in our birth country the application was granted and he came over in 2010 and he his 18 yrs now.

    I applied for a spouse visa in 2011 to the home office because we are waiting for his divorce to come through but the home office stated that my relationship is not genuin and that i still have a valid visa and due to this they have refuse my application without refusal… we send in a reconsideration with other avidences but still waiting over 16 mths for an answere.

    In 2011 i have lost a baby due to ectopic pragnacy we have submite this to the home office alone with friends letter…

    I have also been here over 10yrs now. my layer as now written to the home office and demon that they make a decision or they will take the matter to the high court.

    What is the next step from her….does anyone know???/

  7. judgate@hotmail.com'

    so what will happen to those who are just about to qualify .I.e i have been here 13 years.

  8. euukimmigration@gmail.com'

    It depends on whether or not legally. This is not a simple procedure and you should take legal advice. Try Bison UK 0208 905 1822

  9. mercyantony09@gmail.com'

    ive being living in uk fr10yrs is there any pssbl fr ILR in this country pls help me

  10. bernardmohammed@hotmail.co.uk'

    I can to the uk in 1997, I got married to a british citizen for 10years and have 3 british children. Three years ago I applied for indefinite leave to remain but was given discretionary leave for three years. I have being living in the uk for fifteen year can I apply for indefinite leave to remain this year or do I need to complete 6 years and discritionary leave to qulify. If I complete another 3 years on discretion leave that will bring the number of years I have lived in the uk to 18 years.
    I would like to apply for indefinite leave this year is it the right thing to do?
    My eldest son is 11 years old/

  11. ladoks@aim.com'
    ladoks@aim.com'No name says :

    Life is the best gift given to all mankind. What benefit is it to any modern society that intend to deprive others of freedom, right to life, and human right by means of laws?

  12. […] are also long stay concessions in place, such as the 10 and 14 year long stay rules, to deal with, not to mention the estimated 500,000-700,000 people living here illegally, which the […]

  13. […] In July Ministers announced plans plan to shut down what many see as an immigration loophole which grants illegal immigrants a permanent stay in the UK after 14 years whether they entered the UK legally or not. […]

  14. ohnndo@yahoo.com'

    going down going down why let the children suffer

  15. kimcam54@hotmail.co.uk'
    kimcam54@hotmail.co.uk'kimone says :

    ive being living in the uk illegal for the past
    10yrs no criminal record ive got my passport with the info when ive entered but no other prove to state i havent leave the country since ,, sugestion ‘ is there any way i can apply for status eg indefinate leave to remain in the uk based on the time im here and under what grounds…..help…..

  16. isobel_pnay@yahoo.com'

    If this 14-year rule is to be abolished, are there any plans on introducing a different route then for people relying on this rule? What are they going to do with millions of over-stayers already here for years and years?

  17. […] 14 Year Long Stay Immigration Concession to be closed UK Government launches far reaching consultation on family migration Government accused of creating an ‘amnesty’ for asylum seekers, but 14 year long stay rule already exists Immigration Rules for Bulgarian and Romanian nationals If you need any immigration advice or help with Sponsorship or Work Permits, Visa, ILR/Settlement, Citizenship, dependant visa or an appeal against a refusal please email:   […]

  18. […] 14 Year Long Stay Immigration Concession to be closed […]

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