Refugees (Family Reunion) (No. 2) Bill

Explanatory Notes

Clause 1

6 Subsection (1) of clause 1 would require the Secretary of State, within six months of this Act being passed, to lay a statement of changes to the Immigration Rules to make provision for refugee family reunion in accordance with this Act.

7 Subsections (2) and (3) set out that such a statement must set out rules on the admission to the United Kingdom of the family members of a person granted "refugee status or humanitarian protection", as defined in the Immigration Rules.

8 Subsection (4) provides a comprehensive list of those people that are included in the definition of "family members" for the purpose of this Act. The Secretary of State may also consider other persons as "family members" so long as regard is given to the factors set out in subsection (4)(e), which includes having regard to the "best interests" of a child.

9 Subsection (5) provides clarification of terms used in subsection (4). Specifically, it would ensure that any family member relationship arising from adoption includes circumstances of de facto adoption. It would also ensure that reference to the "best interests" of a child is read in accordance with Article 3 of the 1989 UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, to which the United Kingdom is a party. 1

1 Article 3 provides a binding obligation to give primary consideration to the best interests of the child. This obligation has been translated into UK domestic law, including in section 55 of the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009 and the statutory guidance made under that section, Every Child Matters – Change for Children.


Prepared 20th February 2018