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The income threshold requirements to sponsor a prospective migrant

Rayhana Kausar, Graduate Member of the Institute of Chartered Legal Executives at Astle Paterson discusses the minimum income threshold requirements for British citizens to be able to sponsor a non-EEA spouse or partner or child to come and live in the UK.

Rayhana said “The income threshold requirements were introduced in July 2012 with the aim to ensure that migrants do not become reliant on the taxpayer for financial support and that they are able to integrate effectively.

The minimum income threshold was set at £18,600 for sponsoring a spouse or partner, rising to £22,400 for also sponsoring a child and an additional £2,400 for each further child.

The rules caused much controversy and were seen as an infringement of the right to family life and interference with a genuine spousal relationship.

The matter was therefore sent to the Courts and the Court initially suggested that a threshold of £13,400 – which was more in line with the national minimum wage – would be more appropriate.”

However, the matter progressed to the Court of Appeal and, as Rayhana stated “On 11th July 2014 the Court upheld the lawfulness of the income threshold of £18,600 for spouses or partners and children.

The judgment will mean that, from 28th July 2014 onwards, individuals whose applications were on hold pending this judgment will now receive a decision. As these cases met all the requirements save for the minimum income threshold, they now stand to be refused.

It is possible that an appeal will be made to the Supreme Court, but this is likely to take some considerable time and any decision may not be forthcoming until well into 2015.”

To discuss matters further please contact Rayhana Kausar, Graduate Chartered Legal Executive at Astle Paterson on 01283 531366 or by way of email at rkausar@astlepaterson.co.uk.

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