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2014 12 MAY

Lawyers have warned the UK government will face human rights

Lawyers have warned the UK government will face human rights challenges over its plans to overhaul immigration laws.

The Law Society of Scotland fears the plans “will limit judicial independence and threaten human rights application”.

Human rights lawyers called the Immigration Bill “typical Tory stupidity and intransigence” and said it will face challenges for contravening the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).

The coalition government is keen to downgrade the importance of ECHR Article 8 – the right to a family life – in deciding whether people should be allowed to remain in the UK.

It believes people wrongly hide behind Article 8 when they should leave and all other avenues have been exhausted.

However, Scottish lawyers warn the government cannot pick and choose which parts of ECHR laws it follows.

The Immigration Bill, which received its second reading in the House of Lords on Monday, will remove judicial discretion in cases which engage Article 8.

“Article 8 rights are outweighed by previous criminal acts or that the individual is not entitled to be here. It is not as easy as people think to establish Article 8 rights.”

The Home Office says the bill is expected to receive Royal Assent by this spring.

A notice on the Home Office website states: “The bill will reform the removals and appeals system, making it easier and quicker to remove those with no right to be here.

“It will prevent illegal migrants accessing and abusing public services and the labour market.”

Source: Scotsman

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