The purpose of this letter is to inform you about the Government’s intention to introduce appeal fee charges for some asylum and immigration appeals on 19 December 2011. The Fees Order which prescribes the fee to be paid has now been approved in both Houses of Parliament.
Fees will be payable by the majority of individuals who wish to bring an appeal against a Home Office decision in the Immigration and Asylum Chambers in the First-tier Tribunal to refuse them either:
- leave to enter the country
- leave to remain in the country, or
- an application to vary their leave.
The following appellants will not be required to pay a fee:
- those that qualify for legal aid
- those that are receiving asylum support
- individuals [under the age of 18] in receipt of services provided under section 17 of the Children Act 1989
- those that are in the ‘Detained Fast Track’ process, and
- in some other limited instances, where there are certain exceptional or compelling circumstances, a discretionary power will enable the Lord Chancellor to exempt payment of appeal fees.
There will be no fees for appeals to the Upper Tribunal.
The full response to this consultation exercise and how the proposals were amended following consultation responses can be found at: http://www.justice.gov.uk/consultations/closed-with-response.htm
From 19 December new legislation will also come into force, which will allow appellants to pay for and lodge an appeal on-line.
To do so appellants must be able to pay using a Visa/MasterCard credit card or Visa debit card or be submitting an appeal which does not require a fee to be paid.
Appellants can ask another person to pay the fee on their behalf using their payment card details, with their permission.
Appellants will be able to save an appeal which they have started completing, process top up payments and process multiple payments.
For paper forms appellants will be able to pay for an appeal by debit/credit card by providing details with their appeal and posting it to the tribunal or by bank to bank transfer.
As part of these changes we will move to single lodgement which means that appeals can only be made at the tribunal in theUK.
These changes reflect the general policy approach where relevant appeal fees (except asylum) must be paid for before they are listed for hearing.
Further guidance will be available on our website www.justice.gov.uk (under the Immigration and Asylum section) from 19 December 2011. This is also where appellants will be able to lodge/ pay their fee for an appeal on-line.