Financial implications of the Bill
13 Refugee family reunion applications made under the Immigration Rules are not separately recorded in the quarterly immigration statistics, but comprise the majority of the applications in the ‘Family: Other’ category. The number of applications in this category has increased in recent years, rising from 4,591 in the year ending September 2012 to 9,155 in the year ending September 2016. The most recent statistics available are those for the year ending September 2017. 7,439 refugee family reunion applications were made between October 2016 and September 2017. Over that same time 8,041 decisions on family reunion applications were made, with 5,197 granted (65%). 1
14 It is difficult to estimate an average unit cost for the processing of refugee family reunion applications under the refugee family reunion immigration rules. However, during the passing of the Legal Aid, Sentencing and Punishment of Offenders Act 2012 amendments were tabled that would bring family reunion applications into scope for civil legal aid. The Government Minister, Lord Wallace of Tankerness, stated at that time that the cost of this would be £5 million a year. 2
15 The Bill therefore requires a money resolution.
1 House of Commons Library, Briefing Paper Number 07511, 22 January 2018, The UK’s refugee family reunion rules: striking the right balance? and HM Government, Immigration Statistics, July to September 2017: data tables
2 HL Deb, 18 January 2012, c678