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McGill & Co is a Scottish immigration law firm specialising in UK immigration, nationality and refugee law.

13 December 2019 Iain Halliday Brexit & EU Migration
  The Conservative party have won the election with a large majority and will now have the opportunity to implement their Brexit plan and manifesto pledges. The UK will most likely leave the EU, with a Withdrawal Agreement, on 31 January 2020. Free movement of EU citizens will continue under that Agreement until 31 December 2020.  

11 December 2019 Amna Ashraf Personal Immigration
 Bringing a loved one to live with you in the UK has always been a topic subject to much confusion and scrutiny. Our latest series of webinars took the viewers through the evidence required and in the fourth one, the 10 steps involved in involved in making an application for your partner, spouse or fiancé. The series is available to watch here.  

09 December 2019 Iain Halliday Brexit & EU Migration
  With Christmas, and Brexit, fast approaching, it is a good time to consider how Brexit could affect Santa’s annual task of delivering presents to the children of the UK.

04 December 2019 Amna Ashraf Personal Immigration
The fourth webinar in our Appendix FM series covers the steps involved in making an application for your fiancé, spouse or partner. This is being premiered through our facebook page at 12pm on Friday 6 December 2019.

04 December 2019 James Ritchie Personal Immigration
  If you are in the UK as a dependant on a spouse or partner visa and your marriage or relationship breaks down, your immigration status will be affected. Dealing with a relationship breakup can be stressful enough, but add in an immigration dimension and it can quickly become overwhelming. We’ve put together this blog to try and answer some of the most common questions that we get asked about this.  

19 November 2019 James Ritchie Refugees
Those granted refugee or humanitarian protection status in the UK may be eligible to reunite with their husbands or wives here in the UK through a process known as ‘family reunion’. This blog deals with the basics of how to prepare an application and the lesser known costs associated with applying. These costs may differ wildly depending on which country you are applying from. As such, this guide follows a broad application process and, where specifics are necessary, uses Gambia as an example.  

07 November 2019 Amna Ashraf Personal Immigration
The last in the Appendix FM series, this webinar goes through the application process for those applying as a partner, spouse or fiancé in 10 easy to follow steps. As practices can sometimes vary from country to country, we will now be starting a series of blogs to cover application procedures for a number of popular countries.

21 October 2019 Amna Ashraf Personal Immigration
 The third in the series, this webinar addresses the relationship and housing requirements for spousal, partner or fiancé visas. We delve into evidence that is compulsory and that which is recommended for either or all of the visa types. Watch this webinar for some useful tips and advice to help present your case in the best possible frame. Click here to watch all other webinars in the series.  

11 October 2019 Iain Halliday Blog
  Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights protects the right to private and family life. This rights is relied on frequently in immigration cases. The Home Office are allowed to interfere with a person’s right to private and family life where this is a proportionate response to the legitimate aim of maintaining effective immigration control. The question in many immigration cases is whether the Home Office’s interference with this right is proportionate.  

08 October 2019 Iain Halliday Blog
As the Brexit crisis trundles on, and we edge closer to the deadline of 31 October 2019, many are trying to pin down what happens to EU immigration and asylum law after the UK leaves the EU (or, to use the Prime Minister’s words, after we puncture “the great poisonous puffball of Brexit”).   The government’s stated aim is to leave the EU, with or without a deal, on 31 October 2019. If there is a deal, there will be a transitional period. During this time nothing will change and EU law will continue. Under the deal negotiated by Theresa May, that period would last until 31 December 2020. The period under any deal negotiated by Boris Johnson is likely to be the same or similar. The more pertinent question, given that very little progress has been made towards concluding a deal, is what happens if there is a no-deal Brexit? The UK will leave the EU by automatic operation of law on 31 October 2019. The Benn Act requires the Prime Minister (whoever that may be at the time) to seek an extension from the EU to 31 January 2020 if a deal has not been approved by Parliament before 19 October 2019. Boris Johnson has suggested to Parliament and the general public that he will not comply with this Act (although he has assured the Court of Session that these statements do not reflect the Government’s understanding of their legal obligations and that he will, in fact, comply with the Act). It is impossible to predict what may happen over the courser of the next few weeks. In any case, complying with the Act would not prevent no deal; merely delay it until January. So what exactly is the status of EU immigration and asylum law in the UK after no deal? For the most part, EU law continues after Brexit thanks to the European Union (Withdrawal) Act 2018. This Act creates a body of “retained EU law” which can then be changed by Parliament as and when they wish after Brexit. The Act prevents the immediate repeal of huge swathes of EU law on Brexit day, which would have left gaping chasms in the UK’s legal system. EU free movement law will continue after Brexit as the Immigration (EEA) Regulations 2016, and directly effective rights under the Free Movement Directive, will become “retained EU law”. In due course, the 2016 regulations will be repealed. This will most likely be done by the Immigration and Social Security Co-Ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill which has been revived following the Supreme Court’s decision to quash the prorogation of Parliament. The Bill currently contains no safeguards or transitional provisions which would avoid a sudden loss of rights on the day the 2016 Regulations are repealed. It is currently unclear what protection will be put in place for EU nationals (and EEA and Swiss nationals) who have not yet applied for settled status (they have until 31 December 2020 to do so meaning there will be a gap between repeal of free movement law and full subscription to the settled status scheme. The Euro TLR scheme does not plug this gap as it is only for people entering after Brexit). Numerous amendments have been tabled to the Bill attempting to correct this (and other) deficiencies. However it remains to be seen which of them make it in to the Bill (if the Government ever brings it back to Parliament). Some form of protection, through transitional provisions, will be put in place. It would be nice if the Government told us what legal form that protection will take rather than causing mass panic by making legally inept announcements about ending free movement overnight to the press. However it seems with the current Government that is too much to ask.  The Government have already made provision for some changes to be made to the 2016 Regulations immediately after Brexit, however these only relate to EEA nationals who commits a criminal offence after Brexit day.  Also some EU asylum law, such as the Dublin Regulation which allows the UK to send asylum seekers back to the first EU country they entered, will become defunct immediately after Brexit. Other than this, very little changes overnight after Brexit. For a more detailed look at what will change immediately, and what will not, when we leave the EU see my post on the Free Movement blog here.

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