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UK Human Rights Lawyer

Human Rights Solicitors

As specialist immigration lawyers in London, we have over 20 years’ experience of challenging UK government decisions on human rights grounds successfully. We have a proven track record of succeeding in the most complex cases even for families who are living illegally in the UK and want to secure leave to remain in the UK

How can you argue a claim on Human Rights grounds ?

Section 6(1) Human Rights Act 1998 provides that government bodies must make decisions that are compatible with fundamental human rights and freedoms that everyone in the UK, and seeking to enter the UK is entitled to.

Examples of using human rights for families without status in the UK

Article 8(1) of the Human Rights Act 1998 provides that everyone has the right to respect for a private and family life. This is not an absolute right but a qualified one, meaning that the Secretary of State can interfere with the enjoyment of the rights but only if proportionate. This requires a balancing exercise of the rights and interests of the person and any wider family members in the UK against the UK’s rights to maintain immigration control.

In 2012 the UK Government introduced new rules under Appendix FM to emphasise Parliaments view as to what the public interest in these cases is. Many clients we advise incorrectly believe if the rules are not met that they cannot succeed. Where the rules are not met, for an immigration decision to be lawful, it must in respect of Article 8 apply the step-by-step approach proposed in R(Razgar) v SSHD [2004] UKHL 27, that:

  1. Will the proposed removal be an interference by a public authority with the exercise of the applicant’s right to respect for his private or (as the case may be) family life?
  2. If so, will such interference have consequences of such gravity as potentially to engage the operation of article 8?
  3. If so, is such interference in accordance with the law.
  4. If so, is such interference necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security, public safety or the economic well-being of the country, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others?
  5. If so, is such interference proportionate to the legitimate public end sought to be achieved?

In respect of these cases where the rules are not met, an applicant can request leave to remain to be granted outside the rules. The law settled by the Supreme Court in Agyargo v SSHD confirms that where the rules are not met for leave to be granted that an “Exceptional Circumstances test” must be considered outside the rules , and that whilst Appendix FM is said to reflect how the balance will be struck under article 8 between the right to respect for private and family life, and the legitimate aims which are listed in article 8(2) of the Act, in genuinely exceptional circumstances article 8 can still be breached justifying a grant of leave to remain in the UK.

The caselaw also confirms that exceptional does not mean unusual or unique, but means circumstances in which refusal would result in unjustifiably harsh consequences for the individual such that refusal of the application would not be proportionate.

At Barnes Harrild & Dyer our specialist lawyers will be able to advise if your case meets the exceptionality test and what steps need to be taken to submit a successful application, or appeal.

We regularly use human rights successfully in the following scenarios

  • represent families who believe they cannot win a case due to being unable to meet the rules, even if the family are living in the UK as overstayers with successful outcomes
    regularly represent families who have been refused previously and identify legal challenges to mount fresh applications with successful outcomes
  • represent in cases that involve the best interests of a child
    represent cases for applicants in the UK who do not wish to leave because they are unable to meet the rules to return to the UK with entry clearance under the family route.
  • succeed in complex entry clearance applications to re-unite families
  • rely upon human rights to obtain leave to remain for applicants who have lived in the UK for certain durations of long residence
  • represent applicants who find themselves unable to return to their country of origin through no fault of their own and finding themselves in a state of immigration limbo
  • Applicants suffering from severe mental health or physical health issues and need ongoing medical treatment in the UK
  • Use of human rights laws to seek revocation of deportation and exclusion orders
  • To challenge visit visa refusal decisions
  • To seek damages for breaches of rights

Contact BHD Solicitors in London to arrange a consultation with one of our specialist human rights lawyers.

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