Rule Changes Adult Dependent Relatives

Danielle Cohen
By Danielle Cohen Immigration Law Solicitor Linkedin
Danielle Cohen has over 20 years of experience as a lawyer and a reputation for offering professional, honest and expert advice.
8 April 2019

In July 2012 the UK Government made impossible changes to the adult dependent relative’s immigration routes.  The new rules which are contained in Appendix FM significantly changed the criteria for this visa category to the extent that in reality, very few applicants are successful.  Daily we see the hardship caused to British families who cannot sponsor relatives to come and join them in the UK, with no recourse to Public Funds.  The introduction of Appendix FM restricted applications, so that they can only be made from outside the UK and the new Rules stipulate that the applicant, must as a result of age illness or disability, require long term personal care to perform everyday tasks and must be unable, even with practical and financial help from the sponsor, to obtain the required level of care in their country of origin.

This Rule makes no sense! why British nationals should not be able to bring their adult dependent relatives to the UK, when they have sufficient resources to look after them? The introduction of the requirement to show that the dependent relative is unable to look after themselves is unjustifiably harsh and incredibly difficult to prove.  We need to demonstrate that there is evidence of age, illness and disability, and the applicant requires long term care and that such help is not available in their country of origin.  In some countries the evidence is incredibly difficult to obtain and the more able a sponsor is to afford the care in the UK, the more likely it is to be argued that he can afford to provide the money for the relative in the country of origin.  We often obtain reports from Local Health Authorities or from doctors who have knowledge of the facilities available throughout the entire country, but that is not simple.  Although we are successful in making these applications, most of the applications are not being made from abroad, but rather are made from in country, under exceptional circumstances.  In 2014 the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants made a freedom of information request to the Home Office asking for confirmation of how many applications under this route have been made since the changes have been introduced.  The requests have never been answered.