Immigration Bill becomes law

James Brokenshire has welcomed the news that the Immigration Bill received Royal Assent on 14 May, allowing for a number of reforms to make our immigration system fairer to British citizens and legitimate migrants and tougher on those with no right to be here.

The Immigration Act 2014 will reduce the factors which draw illegal migrants to the UK, make it easier to remove those with no right to be here and ensure the Courts have regard to Parliament’s view of what the public interest requires when considering Article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR) in immigration cases.

The Act now means that the number of appeals that can be made on immigration decisions will be cut from 17 to just four and will allow the Government to deport certain, harmful individuals before their appeals are heard. The Act also provides new, clear guidance to the Courts as to how Article 8 of the ECHR – the right to a family life – should be interpreted, making it clear that this right should not be regarded as absolute and unqualified.

The changes will also ensure that illegal migrants to the UK will find it more difficult than ever to illegally access public services, by asking private landlords to check tenants’ immigration status and be preventing illegal migrants from obtaining bank accounts or driving licenses.

Our public services will also receive greater protection from abuse, as the Act will require temporary migrants to the UK to make a financial contribution to the NHS, preventing the activities of so-called ‘health tourists’.

Commenting on the Act becoming law, James said:

“The Immigration Act is a landmark piece of legislation which will build on our existing reforms to ensure that our immigration system works in the national interest.”

“We are already planning its implementation and will ensure these measures are introduced quickly and effectively.”