Today, on 11 October 2017, the Home Office announced changes to the dedicated immigration policy for survivors of the Grenfell Tower tragedy so it provides a route to settlement in the UK.
Below is the text of the circular:
Under the original policy, eligible foreign nationals directly affected by the fire with uncertain immigration status could be granted 12 months’ limited leave to remain in the UK with full access to relevant support and assistance.
The changes announced today will enable those who qualify under this policy and who come forward before 30 November to have their limited leave extended and to qualify for permanent residence after a total period of 5 years’ leave granted under the policy, subject to meeting security, criminality and fraud checks.
Immigration Minister Brandon Lewis said:
Our initial response to this terrible tragedy was rightly focused on survivors’ immediate needs in the aftermath of the fire and ensuring they could access the services they need to start to rebuild their lives.
However, since the Grenfell Tower immigration policy was announced, we have been planning for the future of those residents affected by these unprecedented events and listening to their feedback, as well as the views of Sir Martin Moore-Bick.
The government believes it is right to provide this specific group of survivors greater certainty over their long-term future in the UK, subject to their continued eligibility and the necessary security and criminality checks being met.
Eligible survivors granted the initial 12 months’ leave outside the Immigration Rules will be able to apply for further periods of limited leave with access to public funds and permission to work, and indefinite leave to remain after 5 years’ lawful residence.
Meanwhile, relatives of survivors or victims of the tragedy will be able to stay in the UK for up to six months from their date of entry, it was confirmed today.
The new dedicated immigration policy allows relatives who have come to the UK to provide a short period of support to a survivor or to arrange the funeral of a family member to have their stay extended.
If you think you qualify for this leave or have any queries in relation to the Home Office’s announcement, please contact our expert immigration solicitors for further details.