The Migrant Children’s Project Fact Sheet
10 December 2015
The Migrant Children’s Project released a useful fact sheet that detail fee waivers for families applying for immigration. The sheet covers the type of immigration applications that are eligible for said waivers along with the conditions in which they can be granted. For instance, not all applications come with a fee such as an asylum claim under the Refugee Convention or an application that is based on Article 3 of the ECHR (European Convention of Human Rights). Those who fail to get asylum are allowed to make a new claim through more submissions and free of cost.
Other circumstances that merit a fee waiver and all of them are mentioned in the Immigration and Nationality (Fees) Regulations, 2015. In addition most applications that are made in accordance with Article 8 ECHR do not have to pay a fee either. It should also be noted that immigrants who are applying as parents or partners under the 5 year settlement rule may not apply for the fee waiver. The reason is clear in the policy of the Home Office which states that the applicant needs to meet certain financial requirements which will ultimately make them incapable of meeting the criteria of the fee waiver.
Applicants who are relying on other Articles of the ECHR can also avail the fee waiver but that will only be possible if the Human Rights claim forms the foundation of the application. Similarly, applications that are dependent on Article 3 of the ECHR can also have their fee waived.
However, not every application is eligible for a fee waiver. The Home Office will only waive for applicants who can prove that they are impoverished, will become impoverished if they pay the fee, or if their financial circumstances have exceptional circumstances. In this context these relate to the applicant’s financial circumstances and not their human rights claim. However, if they have enough money only to take care of child welfare requirements, then their fee can be waived.
According to the Home Office, an applicant or applicants will be considered destitute if they do not have accommodation or cannot obtain it, they have somewhere to live but are too poor to provide for themselves. In order to be eligible for a fee waiver in this regard, applicants must little to no disposable income to fall back on, cannot borrow the money from family or friends and/or have no future prospects that can allow them to accumulate the fee amount in the next 12 months. All of this the applicants must prove themselves with relevant documents. In addition, if the applicant is a child with parents who wish to remain in the country, the whole family has to qualify if they need a fee waiver.
The fact sheet for the Migrant Children’s Project comprises of a several other details that detail fee waivers for immigration applications. However, for comprehensive details, visiting an experienced immigration law firm would be a better idea.