Covid Concession for Partners
By Danielle Cohen Immigration Law Solicitor LinkedinDanielle Cohen has over 20 years of experience as a lawyer and a reputation for offering professional, honest and expert advice.
We represented an Israeli national in an appeal. In November 2020 she made a human rights application for leave to remain in the UK on the basis of her family life with her husband. The application was considered and refused, subject to an appeal which was successful!
On 5th August 2021 the Secretary of State refused the application. The refusal was strange, given that the Home Office accepted that she was eligible to apply for leave to remain as a partner under Appendix FM of the Immigration Rules, and given that the Home Office also accepted that she met the suitability and the eligibility requirements. The only eligibility requirement she did not meet was immigration status, because she came to the UK as a visitor, and sought to switch in country to the category of a spouse. She could make the application in country because of a concession which was made during the Covid Pandemic which allowed applicants to make applications in the UK, if this application was open to them to make in their home country. In other words, when we made the application for her to switch in country from visitor to a spouse, we utilised the Government’s Pandemic Concession.
Surprisingly, the Home Office did not attend the hearing at all and to our delight, the Judge found not only that there would be insurmountable obstacles to family life continuing elsewhere, but also that she always fell within the Coronavirus policy. The appeal was allowed and she will be granted leave to remain under the five year partner route. It is a shame that the wrong decision was made in the first place, and that our client had to wait since November 2020 for the correct decision.