7 Year Rule – Parent’s Leave to Remain – In the Best interest of Child’s future
Changes to Immigration Rules by the Home Office in 2012 include special considerations for children who have been living in the UK continuously for 7 years or more. Commonly known as the 7 year rule, the goal of this ruling is to protect the best interests of children living in the UK. This includes the children of migrants. In short, it states that children living in the UK continuously for 7 years or more may be considered for leave to remain, regardless of their legal status.
Children will adapt to a country as their home wherever they are. They do not have a say in their residency – the place where they are living is the place where they become integrated. For any child, seven years is the majority of their life, if not their entire life. Whether they are living in the country lawfully or unlawfully, the country is still be home for them, and to insist on removal is detrimental to their wellbeing.
It is a requirement that each individual case is evaluated, and the final decision is based on what is best for the child. Generally it is considered best for children to remain with their parents.
For a parent to apply for leave to remain with a child under the 7 year rule, they must be able to prove that leaving the UK (with their child) is not in the best interest of the welfare of the child. The parent will need to have sole responsibility for the child, or shared responsibility with another parent who is settled in the UK, or is a UK citizen. The child must be under 18 at the time of application, and the parent must show active involvement in their role as a parent.
In addition, the parent must be able to financially support the child, and show adequate English language skills.
In all cases, it is a requirement before ruling to review all of the conditions surrounding the child. The decision will explain how all considerations were made and the supporting information that determined what ruling is in the best interests of the child.
YDVISAS specialise in all visa categories and are specialist immigration lawyers in the UK. Please contact the expert team at YDVISAS, should you need any professional help with your visa application.