Changes to the asylum and immigration process due to Covid-19

Legal Updates

Because of the Coronavirus public health crisis, there have been some temporary changes to the asylum and immigration process.

This page was last updated on 14 August (asylum support section).

If you have a question about how Covid-19 might affect your particular situation, you can try contacting the Home Office Coronavirus helpline (although we expect it will be very busy).

Telephone: 0800 678 1767 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm). Calls are free of charge.

Email: CIH@homeoffice.gov.uk

Contents of this page

Asylum information

See also sections below that apply to all asylum and immigration applicants: appeals, reporting, detention.

Visas

Appeals

Reporting to the Home Office

Detention

Asylum

Asylum screening interview

The Home Office are still registering asylum claims (though some people have reported difficulties getting their claims registered).

If people do not claim asylum at the port of entry, screening interviews usually take place at the Asylum Intake Unit in Croydon (south London).

In response to the Covid-19 crisis, the Home Office are now also doing some asylum screening interviews in Glasgow, Belfast (which was already a screening interview location if you arrived to the UK in Northern Ireland), Liverpool, Leeds, Solihull and Cardiff.

If you are in Belfast, the Home Office recommend contacting Migrant Help to arrange an appointment with Bryson Asylum Services.

In all other locations, the Home Office recommend first phoning the Asylum Intake Unit on 0300 123 4193 and you will be advised where you should attend your screening interview.

As before the crisis, it is possible to register your asylum claim without phoning for an appointment first, if you are street homeless (you have nowhere to stay and would otherwise have to sleep on the streets) or in some other circumstances of vulnerability. However, the Home Office strongly recommends calling the Asylum Intake Unit appointment line on 0300 123 4193 first to find out where you should travel to.

Substantive (big) asylum interview

The Home Office paused face-to-face interviews at the start of the lockdown, but have now (since July) begun doing some substantive asylum interviews by video call. The Home Office were already using video link for some asylum interviews prior to the Coronavirus crisis. The Home Office are prioritising people who live closest to the video interview facilities (to reduce the need for travel).

We have now heard of some people being invited to face-to-face interviews – we will update with any further information as we get it.

Further submissions (fresh claims)

Previously, most people who wanted to submit further evidence to be considered as a fresh claim (read more in the Right to Remain Toolkit here) had to go and do this in person in Liverpool.

This requirement has been stopped for now – there are no face-to-face appointments in Liverpool taking place.

You can submit further evidence by post or email.

The Home Office prefer evidence to be sent by email but this will not be possible for everyone.

Remember if you are sending it yourself (without the help of a lawyer), you will need to explain who you are, and what the evidence is, and how it amounts to a fresh claim – do not just send the evidence without explanation.

The details for sending the evidence are:

Postal address:

Further Submissions Unit
The Capital Building
Old Hall Street
Liverpool
L3 9PP

E-mail address:

CSUEC@homeoffice.gov.uk

You do not need to contact the Further Submissions Unit by telephone first – you can just email your evidence, along with a completed further submissions form. For an explanation of the questions the form asks, see the Right to Remain Toolkit section on fresh claims.

The maximum size of attachment (the documents you are sending) to the email is 20MB, you can send multiple emails if you will go over this amount. It would be useful to connect the multiple emails by saying in the email, for example “this is email 1 of 5”; “this is email 2 of 5.”

If you want to know about the progress of a fresh claim/further submissions you have already submitted, you can email the Home Office at csupostteam@homeoffice.gov.uk

Asylum support

On 27 March, the Home Office announced that people would not be asked to leave their asylum accommodation (as they normally would if they had received a positive decision – for example, refugee status; or if their claim had been refused by the Home Office and appeal) until at least the end of June.

The Home Office continued to pause evictions from asylum accommodation from 1 July, but have started issuing “notice to quit” letters (also called “move on” letters) from 11 August. This includes for people who have been granted Refugee Status or similar leave to remain. The process is starting first of all in England, and a similar process will begin in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland at a later date (not yet specified).

Visas

The current Home Office position on visas is that “if you have a visa or leave that was due to expire between the 24 January 2020 and 31 August 2020, you’ll be able to stay within the UK to 31 August 2020.” See the Home Office guidance here.

On 28 May, (UKVCAS) UK Visa and Citizenship Application Services announced there would be a phased reopening of some appointment centres. Priority will be given to those who already had appointments booked and those appointments were cancelled due to the Coronavirus crisis.

For more information on more technical immigration matters such as visas, see the Free Movement blog post here.

Appeals

Face-to-face appeal hearings were suspended during the lockdown but most courts and tribunals buildings are now open in line with public health advice.

If you had a hearing that was cancelled during the lockdown, the Tribunal should be in touch with you about what is happening (or you can contact them if you haven’t heard anything). You should only attend a Tribunal if you have had confirmation from them that you are having a face-to-face hearing. You should not go in person if you (or anyone accompanying you) has tested positive for Coronavirus or if you are showing symptoms. Contact the Tribunal in those circumstances to see if you are able to go ahead without attending in person.

You can find the current status and contact details of courts and tribunals using the court and tribunal finder service (type in, for example, the town/city where your hearing was due or is due to take place) here.


Reporting to the Home Office

Reporting to the Home Office was paused for several months.

The Home Office now says that:

Some reporting centres will open from 20 July for limited hours, outside of peak travel times. You’ll get a text message, email or letter when you have a new reporting date.

You may wish to make sure the Home Office has the correct mobile number for you if you are worried about missing a message about reporting. You can also find email addresses for all the reporting centres on the Home Office website here.

Detention

Detention centres are closed to visitors, apart from in exceptional circumstances.



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184 comments on “Changes to the asylum and immigration process due to Covid-19

  1. Mohamed on

    Hi , hope you are safe and fine,
    last week i did my Substantive (big) asylum interview, so i am wondering the home office will keep opening and processing their work or they stop work.

    Thanks

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Mohamed. Thanks for your message and we hope you are well too. The Home Office are still processing cases as far as we know, though they are likely to be very busy (there were already long delays at various points of the asylum process and the current situation will probably have made this worse).

      We recommend that during this time of waiting, you read and learn as much as possible about what the next steps will be.

      Here’s the information in the Right to Remain Tookit:

      https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/asylumdecision/

      Reply
      • Abu Sam on

        Hello sir/Madam
        I’ve got the same request as Mohammed’s one , you said as far as you know the home office is still working so my question is when and how you confirm that they are doing the work?
        I’ve done my big interview last 25th of February and I would love to know how long time you think it can take to have an answer?
        Thank you so much in advance and I hope you stay safe.

        Reply
          • RtR on

            Hi Meryem. The most recent statistics from the Home Office show that most people (60%) are waiting for more than six months from their substantive interview to get a decision. You may of course get a decision quicker than that, but it’s important to prepare yourself for the fact there may be quite a wait still.

          • March on

            Received notification that I had won my appeal and also received the fee which court instructed homeoffice to pay. I was asking after how many days will I be able to get a confirmation letter for my visa approval

          • RtR on

            Hi March. There is no fixed timescale for receiving your visa – if you have been waiting a long time, you should contact the Home Office and ask what is happening (through your lawyer if you have one, if you don’t have a lawyer you may be able to ask your local MP to help with contacting the Home Office https://members.parliament.uk/FindYourMP

    • Mo on

      I went to interview 6th December 2019 but I didn’t recive amy answer in ghis situation home office when can give me my answer?

      Reply
      • RtR on

        Hi Mohamed. There is no fixed time for the Home Office to make a decision after the asylum interview. In normal circumstances, it can take many months and at the moment decision-making is likely to be even slower as the Home Office adapt to the Covid-19 situation and with less staff because of sickness and caring responsibilities.

        Reply
        • Abdullah ibn Yusuf on

          I have submitted an application for FLR FP but dont know how to submit documents as the visa centres are closed. Could you advise on this please?

          Reply
          • RtR on

            Hi there. In some cases, people are being asked to email copies of supporting documents if the visa centres are closed. If you have any contact details for who is processing your application, you should use those to ask if they will accept an email, or if they are saying you will need to wait until the centres reopen (it may depend on the type of application, and the type of documents required).

    • Ahmad on

      Hey dear sir or madam
      Hope everyone doing well
      I got a question to ask
      On the 22nd October I went Liverpool for further submission
      And that time that they should reply back were 6 months now I got 6 days left to the time scale of the home office
      And still have not heard back from the home office which really stresses me out sometime
      I want to know what the next stage be

      Reply
      • RtR on

        Hi Mohamed. Unfortunately, a lot of people have to wait more than six months for a decision on further submissions. That is in normal circumstances, and there are even more delays because the Home Office are having to adapt to the Covid-19 crisis and probably have staff shortages due to illness and caring responsibilities. It is important to prepare for a negative decision from the Home Office however.

        If the Home Office reject your fresh claim, you may want to consider if finding more, stronger submissions is possible. Have a look at our Fresh Claims section in the Right to Remain Toolkit: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/freshclaim/

        There is the possibility of challenging the Home Office rejection with a judicial review, but this won’t be possible for everyone. You can find out more in the Judicial Reviews section of our Toolkit: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/jr/

        It is also important to prepare for the scary things that might happen after a Home Office rejection of further submissions. At that point, you may be at risk of detention. Make sure you know how to be prepared by reading our information here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/detention/

        You should also be prepared for the Home Office saying they are going to remove you to the UK (it is more difficult for them at the moment because of the Covid-19 travel restrictions, but it’s important to prepare in case you get a refusal when things have returned to normal). There’s more information about that here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/removal/

        Reply
        • Nijen on

          Hello sir/mam
          I send e-mail to further submissions because I didn’t got reply after my fresh submission which is already 9month
          I got reply from further submission where they said
          Having looked at the case we are unable to give a timescale as to when a decision will be made on the case. Once a decision has been made you will be notified by post to the address listed on our systems.
          Is it possible to know what is next step
          Will be really appreciate

          Reply
          • RtR on

            Hi Nijen. In this situation, you generally have to wait until the Home Office make a decision. If you are waiting a very long time, you can ask your lawyer if you have one, to chase it up with the Home Office. If you don’t have a lawyer, often your local MP can help with following this up.

            It is important to prepare for a negative decision from the Home Office however – and asking them to hurry up and make a decision may be hurrying up a negative decision.

            If the Home Office reject your fresh claim, you may want to consider if finding more, stronger submissions is possible. Have a look at our Fresh Claims section in the Right to Remain Toolkit: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/freshclaim/

            There is the possibility of challenging the Home Office rejection with a judicial review, but this won’t be possible for everyone. You can find out more in the Judicial Reviews section of our Toolkit: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/jr/

            It is also important to prepare for the scary things that might happen after a Home Office rejection of further submissions. At that point, you may be at risk of detention. Make sure you know how to be prepared by reading our information here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/detention/

            You should also be prepared for the Home Office saying they are going to remove you to the UK (it is more difficult for them at the moment because of the Covid-19 travel restrictions, but it’s important to prepare in case you get a refusal when things have returned to normal). There’s more information about that here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/removal/

          • Ermi on

            Hi Nijen
            I wanted to ask you did you recived ani decision from Home Oficce?
            If you recived can you please tell me how long it takes., because few days ago they i recived the same answer like you.
            Thank you

    • Abasin Azad on

      Greetings.
      I had given my initial interview in Oct 2019 in the airport. Since then have not heard anything regarding my substantial interview. Is there any point of contact for follow up ?

      Regards
      Abasin

      Reply
      • RtR on

        Hi Abasin. Hopefully you have a lawyer representing you? If not, it’s really important to consider finding one. You can look for a lawyer using the directories here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/lawyers/

        A lawyer could contact the Home Office on your behalf and find out what is happening regarding your substantive interview.

        You can look yourself for any contact details on any letters/documents you may have received from the Home Office.

        It’s also important to remember to prepare for the asylum substantive interview – you can use our guide to help with that: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/asylumiv/

        Reply
  2. Joy on

    First and foremost, thanks for all the great work you are doing. All your tools are very informative and easily to comprehend.

    Would it be okay if you please clarify to me, can a new fresh application be made or submit? I am wondering because of the COVID-19.

    The application is Leave to remain on parental route, thinking about social distancing and lock down in UK. Can you please advise how to go about it e.g Biometric enrollment and documents scanning to Home Office. Thanks so much .

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Thank you for your very kind comments Joy.

      The application for leave to remain as a parent is an online form anyway (more information in our Toolkit here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/children/)

      We saw some caseworkers saying yesterday that some people had been told to still attend appointments to submit biometric information. But at the moment, information being given out is quite inconsistent and it may depend on where your appointment is (eg some appointment venues are in buildings that are currently closed, so people can’t attend). If you have any contact details on documentation about the appointment, you may need to contact them directly to ask.

      Reply
      • RtR on

        The Home Office have now announced that all Service and Support Centres (SSCs) are closed and that “Your immigration status in the UK will not change as a result of you not being able to attend an appointment.” It’s still possible there may be some variation between the different companies that run different types of centres so still check when possible.

        Reply
  3. Quyen Phan on

    Hi,
    Hope you are safe and fine. My baby have an appointment for photograph and finger print next week and I have not received any message saying that the appointment will be cancelled, so I am wondering that the Home Office is still open next week or is there any changes or cancelling about it.

    Thanks

    Reply
    • RtR on

      We saw some caseworkers saying yesterday that some people had been told to still attend appointments to submit biometric information. But at the moment, information being given out is quite inconsistent and it may depend on where your appointment is (eg some appointment venues are in buildings that are currently closed, so people can’t attend). If you have any contact details on documentation about the appointment, you may need to contact them directly to ask.

      Reply
      • RtR on

        The Home Office have now announced that all Service and Support Centres (SSCs) are closed and that “Your immigration status in the UK will not change as a result of you not being able to attend an appointment.” It’s still possible there may be some variation between the different companies that run different types of centres so still check when possible.

        Reply
  4. Jackie Fearnley on

    I was told by a lawyer yesterday that Home Office are asking in most cases for fresh claims to be submitted by email rather than by post. But am wondering how people without access to internet, possibly not represented, are going to be able to do this.

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Yes, this is an issue which we are keenly interested in (also because we want to interact with as many as people as possible online for the foreseeable future.) In our recent community research, many people in the asylum process were very aware of how to access free wifi but so many of these places are now not open/functioning. There are calls for wifi to be introduced into asylum accommodation but this hasn’t happened yet and wouldn’t benefit many people wanting to submit a fresh claim.

      It seems that on the fresh claim matter, the Home Office will just have to deal with people without internet access sending submissions by post, but there is a bigger issue here as so many support and information services revert to online only.

      Reply
    • RtR on

      The Home Office has stopped doing the big interviews for now (they are still doing the first, small screening interview for some people).

      Reply
      • Kelly on

        I received a letter saying that I there is a “delay in asylum claim” and they will get back to me within 6 months and that I am required to go to the immigration reporting centre. I am confused as to what all this means, can someone clarify it for me please.

        Reply
        • RtR on

          Hi Kelly. I’ve just replied to your email about this, but posting my reply here in case it’s useful to others reading this page:

          Right to Remain Contact

          2:08 PM (5 minutes ago)

          to riihanga98
          Hi Karipama

          There are always a lot of delays in the asylum process and the situation has got even worse because of the Coronavirus crisis – the Home Office are still making some decisions, but much less because of having to adapt to the situation and I think also because of staff sickness/caring responsibilities.

          Even before the crisis, MOST people had to wait more than 6 months for a decision on their claim, and this will definitely have increased.

          If the Home Office are wanting you to report, they will send you details of where/when this will be. This is a quite normal part of the asylum process – they don’t ask everyone to do it because they don’t have the staff to cope with it, but they do ask a lot/most of people to. It will be a regular appointment at your nearest Home Office branch, and usually only involves having to sign your name and not much else. You can read a bit about it in our guide to the asylum process here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/claimasylum/

          However, at the moment, the Home Office have stopped reporting because of travel/lockdown restrictions, so you may not hear anything from them for some time. You should make sure they have a current phone number for you, as they appear to be informing people of when reporting will start again by text message. You can check the webpage above to find out if this has changed (we update it whenever there is a new announcement).

          Reply
  5. D.Twine on

    Hello
    thank you in advance for listening
    I received the email regarding the cancellation of my husbands immigration appeal case. I could not afford representation so I am the representative (as this is an appeal from outside the UK).
    I am very confused about what I should do.
    I had a date for the 16th April. I have not submitted my bundle of documents or skeletal argument and not sure if sending it 15 days before the appointment still stands?
    I also have read that without representation from a lawyer it would be unlikely I would have a Case management hearing or prehearing telephone call.
    I am so confused as to what I should do. Please can anyone advise

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi there – were there contact details on the notification of hearing (the document that said when the hearing date was)? If so, you could try and contact the Tribunal, because at the moment there is some different information being given about the procedure depending on which Tribunal is dealing with it.

      Reply
  6. Ibrahim on

    Hi Sir, hope all is fine and thanks fro Right to Remain effort.

    Do you have an idea if the Home Office has suspended DECISION MAKING on cases which have substantively been interviewed recently. Any announcement or measure will important to know

    Many thanks

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Ibrahim. As far as we have heard, the Home Office have not suspended decision making. I think though, that all the changes there are having to make because of Covid-19 might slow this down (and there were already some delays in this).

      Reply
      • Ibrahim on

        Hi RTR, hope all is fine,

        Could you please advise me in any way I could update my email address to the Home Office, in case, they make a decision on my asylum case? This is because I have no legal representative nor home address since I live in an emergency accommodation which just recently provide by HO.
        I was interviewed 3 months ago after waiting 11 months and most cases interviewed after me have received their decisions via email to their lawyers. Therefore, please if you have any information, only advice me

        Please stay safe and many thanks

        Reply
  7. Bayrak on

    First time I read your newsletter service and it really amazed me. I appreciate your hard work to being helpful for people.

    I just wonder whether the Home Office will proceed for an online substantive interview or they cancelled all interview. Since in my city, they only conducted online interviews via skype not face to face any time. It has been 8 months I am expecting an interview schedule and now I don’t even want to think that they are not going to proceed.

    I am asking since the sound in your post like they may schedule online interviews. I just want to be clear. Thank you very much again.

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Bayrak. Thank you for your kind words. I have double checked the wording of the Home Office announcement, and it was that face-to-face interviews are paused. There may still be a problem in conducting online interviews as in the past this has required Home Office staff, interpreters and of course the interviewee to be present in an office somewhere. It sounds like they are trying to find a way of doing the interviews without requiring people to go the Home Office building itself. We will update the blog post if we hear any more about this.

      Reply
  8. alex on

    Hello ! could you precise what happens to people freshly arrived in UK who want to claim asylum ? Is the situation different in London/Croydon compared to in other cities ? can they have a first screening interview and receive settlement and support ? thx

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Alex – do you mean in normal circumstances? In normal circumstances, everyone (adults) apart from people who arrive to the UK in Northern Ireland have to travel to Croydon to claim asylum/have the screening interview. Last week, there were still screening interviews taking place in Croydon (if the Home Office has accommodated someone when they claimed asylum, they are likely to be near Croydon anyway). We haven’t heard about any change to this. It is usually at your screening interview that you would say you need accommodation/financial support – the Home Office should still be providing this. If screening interviews are being cancelled, the person should contact Migrant Help to see what the current process is for telling the Home Office they need support.

      Reply
  9. mazin on

    Hi, hope All you are fine and in safe place,
    How can I know my asylum case status, already I did my big interview? is there any mail or other way to know?

    Thanks

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Mazin. Usually if you wanted to contact the Home Office about this, you would do this via your lawyer. But you do also need to be careful – although it is difficult to be waiting a long time, asking the Home Office to make a decision more quickly could mean you get a *negative* decision more quickly. There’s more info here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/asylumdecision/

      Reply
      • Shahtaj on

        Hello hope u are fine. My main interview was conducted on 24th of December and 6 months have been passed for my asylum claim. I got letter from home office mention that 6 months have been passed and they are unable to make decision and I hear from them within eight to ten weeks. So this means they give me decision within this time frame or it take more time.

        Reply
        • RtR on

          Hi Shahtaj. The Home Office often miss their timeframes for their decisions anyway, and now they are exceptionally busy due to the Coronavirus crisis, they may take even longer. It’s impossible to say for certain though – there’s a possibility they could decide within that time. If you are waiting many many months more, you may wish to ask your lawyer to contact them to find out what is happening. You must be prepared in case it’s a negative decision though – read more here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/refusal/

          Reply
  10. iffat on

    Hello,

    I am just wondering my friend has submitted his further application and its been 8 months HO hasnt reponded,in this case what shall he do? He needs right to work in the country do u know where he can send his letter for asking the right to work and any update of his further submission date.Are they taking any postage?Any help would be really appreciated.He has 2 kids and really in bad situation.

    Reply
  11. Amer on

    Hello,

    I hope this will find you well and safe.

    I applied for asylum over a year ago and I’m still waiting for my substansive interview. I’m not allowed to work, and I know that i can do an appeal to get work permit. However, I don’t know how. I’ve been looking on the internet, and all I found was that i need to contact the relevant asylum team dealing with my claim. I have no idea how to reach that team. Any help on that will be highly appreciated.

    Best,
    Amer

    Reply
      • Wesam on

        Hi , I’m an Asylum Seekers for Syria, I don’t have a lawyer and I was not entitled to the Sec 95 support as I have savings when applied to asylum 3 months ago, and I conducted my main substantive interview 2 months ago.

        Can I contact by email the asylum team responsible for my case in order to get an update on the decision as I don’t have a lawyer, would they respond?

        However, how the decision could be served in my case, could they use my email address as I don’t have a legal representative?

        I’m very confused and under huge pressures as I have a wife and three kids came with me here in UK.

        Many thanks..

        Reply
        • RtR on

          Hi Wesam. Yes you can contact the asylum team yourself – the Home Office aren’t always good at replying, or replying quickly, but it’s definitely worth a try. Just to note, many people wait many months for a decision after their interview even in normal times, and things will be even more delayed now due to the coronavirus crisis.

          The Home Office have started sending asylum decisions by email because of the current crisis – so if possible you need to check the Home Office have the correct contact details for you.

          Reply
          • Wesam on

            Thank you very much, how can I check that the Home Office have my email address, or just send to my asylum team my detalis?
            I highly appreciate your valuable support..
            Wesam..

          • RtR on

            Hi Wesam. It’s a good idea to send your details to the Asylum Team just in case – when you do so you can ask them to confirm they have these details for you on record, though there’s no guarantee they will reply (unfortunately).

  12. Naomi on

    Hi there

    I had my screening interview over a year ago and i still haven’t been called for my substantive interview which is already worrying me. I have already submitted application to request permission to work and wanted to find out if Home Office has paused that too considering the big interviews have been paused. Roughly do you know how long it will take to receive a decision on permission to work. This might sound like a frivolous question but does the home office ever give asylum decision without having to attend the big interview and make decision based on evidence?

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Naomi. I’m not sure how long right to work decisions usually take (bear in mind that all decision-making is likely to be much slower at the moment as the Home Office adapt to the current situation and will presumably have a lot of staff off for sickness/caring leave). On the asylum decision – the Home Office do occasionally make a decision without a substantive interview but in normal times that is very unusual (it is usually only if they say the person “has not complied” by eg missing a scheduled asylum interview). If you have a lawyer you should ask them for help finding out what is happening.

      Reply
  13. Clara on

    Hello, I am under section 4 since early last year. My fresh claim was sent in around Mai last year by solicitor. Shouldn’t a decision be made within 6 months? What should I do? Thank you

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Clara. There is no set time for the Home Office making a decision on a fresh claim. In 2018, the average waiting time for a decision on further submissions was around two months but this is because some people receive a decision very quickly. Other people wait for a year or more. If you have a lawyer, you can ask them to contact the Home Office to find out what is happening. If you don’t have a lawyer, sometimes your local MP can help with this but MPs are likely to be very very busy with Covid-19 crisis work at the moment. Either way, if you contact the Home Office, you need to be aware that that could speed up a *negative* decision from the Home Office. After a negative decision, you are at risk of being detained and could face removal from the UK. Please see the detention and removal sections of the Right to Remain Toolkit to be prepared in case this happens: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/

      Reply
  14. Fabby on

    Hi, just asking out of curiosity. I had my asylum substantive interview on February 11 and haven’t received a decision. A friend advised me to keep an eye on my email as the office could/might decide to send their decision in soft copy to my email. So it is possible that Home Office decisions can be mailed to asylum claimants?

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Fabby. In normal circumstances, the Home Office usually notify you of the decision by a letter, but in these times it is very possible (and perhaps sensible) for the Home Office to use email instead (as they sometimes do for other kinds of immigration decisions), so it would be worth checking your email yes. If you have a lawyer, you should also be contacting them as the Home Office may send the decision straight to them instead of/as well as you.

      Reply
  15. IBRAHIM on

    Hi my name is Ibrahim and I received letter in 17 of March 2020 fr home office it’s said grand of support under section 95 and it’s said I must wait to transfer to my new dispersal location but now in covid-19 I will get transferred or wait??

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Ibrahim. It seems like dispersal is still happening though there may be delays while accommodation is found. You can try and contact Migrant Help for more information on what is happening with your situation (I know it can be difficult to get through but it is worth trying). You can also contact a local asylum organisation if you need help.

      Reply
  16. John on

    Hi there, thanks for the info.

    Is the Home Office still following up on positive decisions made by the first tier tribunal, by sending out a letter confirming status and then the biometric card? Many thanks

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi John. We haven’t heard that this has stopped, though there have often been delays in them doing this even in normal times and as noted in other replies to comments, the Home Office will likely be much slower at actioning things at the moment as they adapt to Covid-19 working (with less staff).

      Reply
  17. Verbe James Fanso on

    Good day sir and hope you are safe!

    Its been 5 months today i had my screening interview and i have not yet receive a card. I was informed that the home office is closed till further notice due to the on going pandemic. Can you please advise me what to do?

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi there. The Home Office is still functioning, though many offices are closed to the public and most staff. There will be lots of extra delays because of the current circumstances, but you could try and contact Migrant Help about the situation with your card. The phone number is 0808 8010 503 but if you can’t get through to them via phone, you may be able to try their web chat, details here: https://www.migranthelpuk.org/contact

      Reply
  18. Randy A Olsen on

    Goodmorning sir/madam
    We are aware of the current pademic situation now in UK, which has caused a total lockdown. My problem is can someone make an asylum now at the moment between 20 April to May?

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Randy. The Home Office have said that they are still registering asylum claims. You can find the contact details for the Asylum Intake Unit here: https://www.gov.uk/asylum-intake-unit

      This is normally so you can be booked in for a face-to-face appointment (your screening interview) but it may be that the Home Office change the process for this due to the current circumstances.

      Reply
  19. Saibou on

    Hello sir can asylum seeker apply for work now I’m suffering a lot the £5 a day can’t help me at all during covid 19

    Reply
  20. achala on

    Hi , I have done my further submission 19 month ago and didn’t hear anything from home office then I have sent an email for complaint regarding then received response from home office on 9th of March 2020 which state they are aiming to make decision within six month. can I still expect this timeframe or will be affect it again because of covid 19 situation
    Thank you

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Achala. Even in normal times, the Home Office often missed that deadline, but yes Home Office decisions are likely to be even more delayed because of the current situation. You could see if your MP could contact the Home Office and ask what is happening. You can find your MP contact details here: https://www.theyworkforyou.com/

      It is important to prepare for a negative decision from the Home Office however.

      If the Home Office reject your fresh claim, you may want to consider if finding more, stronger submissions is possible. Have a look at our Fresh Claims section in the Right to Remain Toolkit: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/freshclaim/

      There is the possibility of challenging the Home Office rejection with a judicial review, but this won’t be possible for everyone. You can find out more in the Judicial Reviews section of our Toolkit: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/jr/

      It is also important to prepare for the scary things that might happen after a Home Office rejection of further submissions. At that point, you may be at risk of detention. Make sure you know how to be prepared by reading our information here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/detention/

      You should also be prepared for the Home Office saying they are going to remove you to the UK (it is more difficult for them at the moment because of the Covid-19 travel restrictions, but it’s important to prepare in case you get a refusal when things have returned to normal). There’s more information about that here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/removal/

      Reply
  21. Robin Samson on

    Dear Right to Remain,

    Firstly, thank you for all the amazing work you do.

    My partner had an appeal hearing in the Upper Tribunal 5 weeks ago, and a judgement in his favour was promulgated by the judge 3.5 weeks ago. His lawyers have heard nothing indicating that the Home Office have applied for leave to appeal, and the deadline for that is normally 14 days. Do you know (a) whether deadlines of that kind are being adhered to in this period and (b) whether they are still working on processing leave to remain and cards? How long would you normally expect that process to take?
    Many thanks,
    Robin

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Robin. Thank you for your kind words. The Home Office do sometimes miss the 14 day appeal deadline even in normal circumstances, but it might be an idea to contact the Tribunal to find out if they have heard anything from the Home Office about intention to apply for permission to appeal the decision. Here are the contact details (I believe that there isn’t anyone handling the phone line at the moment so probably best to email: https://www.gov.uk/courts-tribunals/upper-tribunal-immigration-and-asylum-chamber)

      Regarding issuing the leave to remain/cards, yes it does seem the Home Office are still doing this so I have heard of lots of delays (there are often delays to this in normal times, so we can expect there to even more at the moment). If you have been waiting a long time, you can either ask your lawyer to contact the Home Office about this, or if you don’t have a lawyer, this is an area when contacting your MP can be helpful (they can contact the Home Office on your behalf).

      Reply
  22. Yusef Torabi on

    Hello.On February 18, I went to Homa Office and made a new claim. On March 10, 2020, a letter was sent to me guaranteeing your support. But I was not contacted. I understand that the current situation is very difficult due to the coronavirus. I can still live in this place with friends, but I have financial problems. Is it possible to get financial support from me?

    Reply
  23. RtR on

    Thank you to everyone who is commenting and asking questions. Please note we will not publish comments that contain personal information (for your own protection). We cannot give advice on individual circumstances.

    We are receiving a lot of comments on this page, and so there may be some delay in us working through them. We are prioritising comments where we can give definite information.

    Reply
  24. Yusef on

    Hello . On February 18, I went to Homa Office and made a new claim. On March 10, 2020, a letter was sent to me guaranteeing your support. But I was not contacted. I understand that the current situation is very difficult due to the coronavirus. I can still live in this place with friends, but I have financial problems. Is it possible to get financial support from me?

    Reply
  25. Ahmed on

    Dear Sir/ Madam
    I have done my hearing court and my case has been allowed. I received the decision 1 month ago, shall i wait more or what i have to do?

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Ahmed. If the Home Office aren’t appealing the decision, they should be taking steps to issue you with the immigration status you applied for. You can ask your lawyer to contact them to find out what is happening (there is likely to be lots of delays at the moment). If you no longer have a lawyer and have been waiting a long time, you could ask your MP to help out. You can find your MP’s details here: https://www.theyworkforyou.com/

      Reply
  26. Randy A Olsen on

    The Home Office have said that they are still registering asylum claims, how about the screeening procedure. How will i carryout the screening at the home office after the registering for asylum during this corona virus pandemic

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Randy. If you contact the Asylum Intake Unit (phone 0300 123 4193) they will advise you which location you will do your screening interview at.

      Reply
  27. Alla on

    Hi

    I am wondering how to claim asylum. I am on Tier 4 visa and would like to claim asylum. Do I have to go in person or to call? if so can you give me the phone numbers? Thanks

    Reply
    • RtR on

      To register an asylum claim, you can call the Asylum Intake Unit on 0300 123 4193, and they should book an appointment for an asylum screening interview for you.

      Reply
  28. Hussain on

    Dear sir or madam. I submitted fresh claim on June 2019 on 11 March 2020 I get letter from home office ask me to fill preliminary questionnaire and sent them back from Liverpool team. I would like to know how long I have to wait for the interview appointment after I fill preliminary questions ? I would like to know if the home office start doing again asylum interview ? I hear someone that home office doing asylum interview by video link or Skype is that true ? Thank you

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Many people do not have an interview after submitting a fresh claim – once the evidence is submitted, the Home Office often make a decision on the papers. This is the case normally, and would even more so now that they are trying to minimise face-to-face contact.

      The Home Office had already been doing some asylum interviews by video link/Skype, but we have not heard about them doing this during the crisis because it still requires people to travel to a Home Office location, and staff to be there, which they are trying to minimise.

      Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Ndu. Yes, it is possible to submit video and photo evidence as part of an asylum claim, but you should always speak to your lawyer first to check if they think the evidence is helpful, and how to submit it in the right format to the Home Office.

      Reply
      • Yusuf Hussain on

        Dear sir or madam I would like to ask if the home office start doing asylum interview? I heard from my friend that the home office doing asylum interview by video link or Skype if that is true I would like to ask how they doing by video link or Skype? Going to the home office place or doing by home can you explain that more please how they doing video link orSkype? Thank you. Yusuf Hussain

        Reply
        • RtR on

          Hi Yusuf. The Home Office had already been doing some asylum interviews by video link/Skype before the crisis, but we have not heard about them doing this during the crisis because it still requires people to travel to a Home Office location, and staff to be there, which they are trying to minimise.

          Reply
  29. Waseem gilani on

    Please i am waiting for first screening interview it,s taking time i month ago i call to home office and get registration number but they did,nt call me back now my health is going down i need immediate check up by doctor please i need help how to contact for screening interview so that i could get in touch with doctor i am.also.low on reserves please help needed i am a diabetic patience please home office how to make it possible to.check doctor in thus sotuation

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Waseem. You could try to contact the Home Office again as screening interviews are definitely taking place at the moment, and a month is a long time to wait since registering your claim. You could try phoning the Asylum Intake Unit and see if they have any information on your claim.

      Reply
  30. Ste on

    Hi, it would be great if you highlight updates because it’s very hard to understand what you’re actually updating on this specific page. Thanks

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Ste. Thanks for the comment – we’ve added in more date references now, and have also specified at top of the page where we give the date of the update, what has been updated.

      Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Randy. The Home Office is still open, in the sense that it is still doing casework and making some decisions. As to when their offices will reopen, we do not have any information on this at the moment.

      Reply
      • Karimi on

        Hi dear I com to I’m 2008 I apply for asylum i get refused cace I 2014 I’m going out uk my self I com back 2020 so I apply agen to asylum my cousin is I haf to going to intervie agin or I haf to do fresh clam ?

        Reply
  31. Kelly on

    Dear Sir/Madam thanking you in advance.

    I have 3 question.

    1. When the home office sent SMS text message stated Reporting is now pause due to the current COVID-19 situation can home office still arrest and lock someone up?? a friend got the text message and 2 days after no way to be find
    2. Do immigration enforcement still working?
    3. Can I still submit application for EEA application?

    Many thanks
    Kelly

    Reply
  32. Shriya on

    Hi,
    We did our screening interview on 4th it may and till now we haven’t received our arc card can you please tell me how long it will take as I am pregnant and I want to register to go as soon as possible but due to not receiving card I am not able to register

    Reply
  33. Mathew Akanmu on

    I’m Mathew. I had my big interview on 31-January-2019. However, I was contacted on 6th – March- 2020, someone with an anonymous phone contact ranged me asking me if my circumstance has changed apart from what I have said on my big interview and I said no. Then he said because he wanted to make his decision, that if he doesn’t receive any change in circumstance he will go ahead and make his decision based on what I said earlier on my big interview and the documents I have tendered. So I told nothing changes then he said goodbye after the call

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Mathew. We have heard quite a lot of people are receiving calls from an anonymous contact – this is likely to be the Home Office as their staff will be using their personal mobiles because they are working at home during the crisis, and it is a way of shielding their number. In which case, it sounds like you now need to wait for the person to make their decision.

      Reply
  34. Ayman on

    Hello. I have a really complicated case so can i talk to someone to help me please please thank you all for all thet great work

    Reply
  35. achala weerakoon on

    Dear Sir / Madam ,

    I have two things to know. first do you know when the biometric service open again ? second I have pending further submission currently ,could you tell me having a British child and child who lived in UK for nearly 8 years ( born UK ) will benefit for my case to get positive outcome. I have submitted all evidences regarding them recently.
    Thank you.

    Reply
    • Char on

      Hi I need some assurance I applied for ilr in January went to the biometric appointment in feb how long does it usually take for them to make a decision they don’t update you on the progress of your application so I’m stuck feeling anxious about what stage my application is at

      Reply
      • RtR on

        Hi Char. There are lots of extra delays at the moment because of the Covid-19 crisis so the usual decision-making timescales won’t apply. If you have a lawyer, you should ask them to contact the Home Office to see what is happening. If you don’t have a lawyer, you can contact the Home Office yourself (you should have some contact details on correspondence with the Home Office).

        Reply
  36. Khashayar nemati on

    Hello , I have question for you I would be appreciated if you answer me , I went poland from iran in 2015 and claimed asylum there and after three years in 2018 I was granted refugee status , as there it was not safe for me at all and I had lots of troubles and difficulties there after two years in 2020 means 4 month ago I came to the UK and I claimed asylum here , as my case is about poland and not my country of origin and I came to the UK directly from poland , am I under dublin or not ? Obviously I ran away from poland and the situation there , is there any chance that I get deported there ??

    Reply
  37. furqan on

    hi i want to apply for assylum in uk canyou please guide me the steps and how much time will it take for processing.

    Reply
  38. Ali on

    Dear Sir/Madam,
    I’m from Yemen. My screening was in September 2018, I had been waiting for the Interview till November 2019. Until now I haven’t received A decision on my case. Is this normal? Can it take a year more to receive a decision?

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Ali. Unfortunately some people are waiting a very long time for a decision. The most recent statistics from the Home Office show that most people (60%) are waiting for more than 6 months for an asylum decision – and this is six months from your substantive (big) interview.

      Reply
  39. pradeep on

    Hi i really liked your page which gives ample of information.I had one question. i applied for appeal on firt tier on feb 2020 i havent heard from them except the have approved m appeal what is the procedure now and how long do i have to wait can you advice me please. thank you.

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Pradeep. After been told that your appeal has been allowed, you normally need to wait two weeks to find out if the Home Office intend to appeal that decision. If a long time has passed since you were informed of the judge’s/Tribunal’s decision, it’s likely that the Home Office aren’t appealing it and should be issuing you with immigration status (eg your documents to say you have refugee status or humanitarian protection, if this was an asylum case). If they are taking a long time doing this, you can ask your lawyer to contact the Home Office to find out what is happening. If you no longer have a lawyer, you may be able to ask your local MP to help with this (you can find out who your local MP is here: https://www.theyworkforyou.com/

      Reply
  40. Salim on

    Dear,

    I hope you are fine, I am wondering that is the Home office start working normally and making decisions or not? I did my Substantive interview last February and I have not received any decision? and I heard that some people got their papers and ID.
    and should I contact them?

    Thanks

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Salim. The Home Office are still making decisions, but there are considerable delays because of the current crisis. Even in normal circumstances, most people (60%) are waiting for more than six months from the substantive interview for a decision. You are welcome to contact them (you could ask your lawyer to do this) but there is no guarantee that they will respond.

      Reply
  41. Kamrul Munna on

    Hi I have applied asylum seeker application in 2014 and I have done interviews and they refused my application based I can go back to my country and live..(they didn’t believe me that going back Bangladesh is not safe for me )after that i have made another fresh application in 2017 and still home office haven’t contacted me back.i have no idea now what are they doing with my fresh application….any advice I can get from here would be appreciated

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Kamrul. That is a long time to be waiting to hear about a fresh claim. You do have the option of asking the Home Office what is happening – through your lawyer if you have one. If you don’t have a lawyer, often your local MP can help with following this up. It is important to prepare for a negative decision from the Home Office however – and asking them to hurry up and make a decision may be hurrying up a negative decision.

      If the Home Office reject your fresh claim, you may want to consider if finding more, stronger submissions is possible. Have a look at our Fresh Claims section in the Right to Remain Toolkit: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/freshclaim/

      There is the possibility of challenging the Home Office rejection with a judicial review, but this won’t be possible for everyone. You can find out more in the Judicial Reviews section of our Toolkit: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/jr/

      It is also important to prepare for the scary things that might happen after a Home Office rejection of further submissions. At that point, you may be at risk of detention. Make sure you know how to be prepared by reading our information here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/detention/

      You should also be prepared for the Home Office saying they are going to remove you to the UK (it is more difficult for them at the moment because of the Covid-19 travel restrictions, but it’s important to prepare in case you get a refusal when things have returned to normal). There’s more information about that here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/removal/

      Reply
  42. Endurance on

    Hi

    Just a quick question is there anyone out there waiting for a decision 8 years on asylum claim because I’ve been waiting?..

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Endurance. That is a very very long time to wait and I think you need to be careful that there hasn’t been a decision that your haven’t been informed of you. You can ask a lawyer (or your local MP) to contact the Home Office to find out what is the current status of your application. You need to be prepared, however, that this will be alerting the Home Office to your presence that they may say you have no right to be in the UK. It’s possible that, if you have had a refusal that you haven’t been informed of, you would have the option of an “out of time” appeal. Take a look at our guide to the asylum process for more information on this: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/refusal/

      Reply
    • Mona on

      Hi Sir. Home office requested me for second big interview which i don’t know why, then it has been cancelled due to Covid19. Please when is Home Office back for interview? What does second big interview mean please with thanks

      Reply
      • RtR on

        Hi Mona. The Home Office have now started invited people to big interviews BUT ONLY BY VIDEO CALL. They are still not doing face-to-face interviews. There are a lot of people now waiting for interviews, so there could be a long wait until you are contacted. Most people only have one big interview, but if the Home Office feel that they did not get all the information they needed, or want to clarify something, they can do further interviews. You should ask your lawyer to ask if there is a particular reason this is happening in your case.

        Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Randy. You can submit further evidence to be considered as a fresh asylum claim at any time after you are “Appeal Rights Exhausted”. See the section on Fresh claims in the blog post above for the current procedure for submitting evidence.

      For more detailed information about how to prepare a fresh claim, have a look at our guide here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/freshclaim/

      Reply
  43. Sindie on

    Hi my name is Sindie , i am living in London for 4 years now. Since my last big interview it has been 1 year that i am not getting a respond from the homeoffice for my case and still waiting very stressed cause i do not know what is going on and what is the next step i can do . My solicitor keeps writing email to them but we did not get any response to know cause i have a son and living with other people and is not easy nothing to take it in every aspect of life cause we are human we are here because we fear of something and we need help to be eligible and to work and study and do everything good for ourself and for the country we live aswell!
    Hopefully i will get a respond.
    Thank you

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Sindie. Sorry to hear about the long delay in your case – we are sadly hearing from many people who are having to wait far too long for a decision.

      You may want to ask your lawyer if they are ok with you asking your local MP to contact the Home Office – sometimes the Home Office respond more quickly to MPs. You can find out who your local MP is here: https://www.theyworkforyou.com/

      It is important, while you are waiting, that you prepare yourself in case you get a negative decision from the Home Office. Find out what you can do here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/refusal/

      Reply
  44. e91 on

    Hi

    Thank you so much for your efforts

    When asylum interview will be resumed ?

    It’s mean now more than 3 months of delay, How it would be compensated ?

    And what if there is another peak of this pandemic ?

    Indeed, I hope if you can do something in regard of this matter.

    Thank you

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi there. We still don’t have information about when the asylum interviews will be resumed – the Home Office are getting ready for this, but haven’t said when this will take place.

      Because the delay is not the fault of the Home Office, there won’t be a legal argument for compensation.

      If there is another peak, it is likely another strict lockdown will be enforced – it may be that the Home Office is better set up to continue things in those circumstances, but this is another thing we do not know for sure.

      Best wishes in these difficult times.

      Reply
  45. Mahmood on

    I have done my screening interview a few days ago and I have given work permit. In the letter which indicates the restrictions, there is a box which says you must report to immigration officials on “ to be advised”. There is not any time or date given. Do you think they will notify me later for this?

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Mahmood. The Home Office should be in touch with you a later point about when they want you to report (though not everyone is required to – they don’t have the staffing numbers to ask everyone to do this). But at the moment, reporting has been suspended because of the Coronavirus crisis so I don’t imagine you will hear anything for the moment.

      Reply
  46. Mahmood on

    Hi,
    Thanks for your reply.
    They gave me PIQ right after the interview. Is it usual? I have heard after submitting the PIQ, they will make an appointment after 3-4 weeks for the big interview. Is that true?

    Reply
  47. Hussain on

    Dear sir or madam. I hope you are well. I would like to know did home office start doing asylum interview again? Thank you. Hussain

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Hussain. There has been no news yet about restarting the asylum interviews – we’ll update the website above as soon as the Home Office starts doing them again.

      Reply
  48. Jad on

    Hi,

    Can I ask you please if the Home office has started sending PIQ to all asylum seeker who have claimed asylum already before, As It’s has been mandatory (since 27/May) on the home office website within 20 days from the date they claim of asylum.

    Thank you
    Regards

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Jad.

      The Home Office don’t send the PIQs to everyone. Their website says: “You might also be sent a ‘preliminary information questionnaire’.” https://www.gov.uk/claim-asylum/after-your-screening

      The Home Office are meant to be amending the forms to say they are not mandatory, however it seems most forms still say they are mandatory. Some lawyers have reported that the Home Office are saying in their emails with the forms that they are not attaching a deadline to complete them because of the Coronavirus situation, but again not all emails are saying this. A very confusing situation! But you shouldn’t necessarily worry if you haven’t received one.

      Reply
  49. Ndu on

    Hello, Please i want to know if home office can decide someone Case and give decision without substantive interviews.
    Thanks

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Ndu. It is possible for the Home Office to make a decision without a substantive interview, though before the Coronavirus crisis it was unusual for this to happen. We have heard of this happening more often recently (presumably because the interviews were suspended and the Home Office wanted to be able to carry on making some decisions). Lawyers have reported that this has tended to happen for people from countries that have a high recognition rate (a lot of people from that country are granted refugee status).

      Reply
      • Omar on

        Hi. How are you? I hope you are all fine and safe.
        I am really worrying about my case. I came here on February 2019 with my brother. I was given alot of letters with questions at my arrival. I answered all the questions and returned the letters to the home office by postal. Then I got no response till now. No one called me to interview. I have been here about a year and half. I don’t have the permission to work. I can’t do nothing. I can’t move. I am really worrying. So, please can you tell me what can I do?

        Reply
        • RtR on

          Hi Omar. Although there are lots of delays in the asylum process, that is a long time to wait without hearing anything from the Home Office. If you have a lawyer, you should ask them to contact the Home Office to find out what is happening. If you don’t have a lawyer, your MP might be able to contact the MP on your behalf (the Home Office often respond more quickly when an MP is contacting them). You can find out who your local MP is here: https://members.parliament.uk/FindYourMP

          Reply
        • Ali on

          Does the home office process the applications faster and give a decision earlier for asylum seekers who come from countries that have ongoing war and conflicts?

          Reply
          • RtR on

            Hi Ali. If the Home Office’s own guidance on a country says that that country is generally unsafe (perhaps because of war, or unsafe for particular groups of people who are being persecuted) that might lead to quicker decisions. However, that relies on the Home Office accepting the person is from that country (they often dispute that), and that there aren’t other complications in the case. There are lots of delays for lots of people in the asylum process at the moment.

  50. Hussain on

    Dear sir or madam. I hope you are well. I heard from refugee council that home office start resume substantive interview from the end of June 2020 using existing Video Conferencing facilities. I would to ask you if is true or you hear? Thank you. Ibrahim Hussain

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Hussain. This is correct – we’ve now updated the webpage with this new information. The Home Office will be starting by asking those who live closest to the Video Conferencing facilities. They will eventually resume face-to-face interviews but there is no date for this yet.

      Reply
      • Sania on

        Hello dear sir/madam
        Could I please kindly request to answer my questions that it’s been more than 16 th months that I haven’t received my big interview,how long does it take ?is the H.O working at the moment or not ?suffering very difficulties.

        Reply
        • RtR on

          Hi Sania. That is a long time to wait for the big interview. The Home Office stopped doing face-to-face big interviews during the lockdown – they are starting to prepare to restart interviews using video calls but it’s very likely there will lots more delays. Because you have been waiting such a long time, it might be worth asking your lawyer to contact the Home Office to ask that your case is prioritised for an interview once they restart them.

          Reply
          • King on

            Hi, how are you doing? Hope you keeping safe. I have a question for you please. I won my court appeal against the home office in February and up till now am still waiting to hear from the home office. Sent a letter to the home office but still haven’t heard anything from them yet. Please advise. Many thanks.

          • RtR on

            Hi King. If you have a lawyer, you can ask them to chase this up with the Home Office as well. You may be able to ask your local MP to help with contacting the Home Office (you can find out who your MP is here: https://members.parliament.uk/FindYourMP ) because the Home Office are sometimes more responsive to MPs than members of the public

  51. Nana on

    Hi, I claimed asylum on 01/07/2019 and it’s been exactly a year and for some reason I haven’t been called for my substantive interview. Do you think the home office will start calling people who like me haven’t got their interview or they will just carry on with people who have claimed just recently? This has really given me anxiety as I don’t really lnow what’s waiting for me. I don’t understand how their system works.
    PS: I was pregnant when I claimed asylum and gave birth after 3 months so that might be the reason why but it’s really been a long time now. Any answers are appreciated.
    Thanks!

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Nana. Unfortunately we are hearing from lots and lots of people who have been waiting a very long time for their substantive interviews, and the Coronavirus crisis has only delayed things further. The only information we have from the Home Office on who they will be prioritising for the restarted interviews (these are just video call interviews for the moment, they have still paused face-to-face interviews) is that they will be asking people who live close to the video call facilities they will be using. This is reduce travel/the use of public transport while the infection rate is still relatively high. If you have a lawyer, you could ask them to contact the Home Office to ask that your case is prioritised because you’ve been waiting such a long time.

      Reply
  52. John on

    FYI, regarding accommodation, I noticed this update on the Refugee Council’s information page:

    “Following the review in June, the Home Office have confirmed their intention to resume evictions for people granted status, however, all evictions remain paused from 1st July, pending a decision from the Immigration Minister as to when evictions will resume.”

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Thanks for this John – we’ve been waiting for clearer information from the Home Office about when evictions might start/who they may apply to (as their communications on this so far haven’t been clear) but have done an interim update for now.

      Reply
  53. mani on

    hi,

    i have applied asylum case in 2018 but unfortunately my asylum has been refused and after that i went through court still reject but in 5 march i submitted my further submission so how long i have to wait for that as i seen home office website its says 6 months but i seen lot of comments in which they mention that they are waiting for more then year is that true!!!!

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Mani. Unfortunately yes some people are waiting a very long time for a decision on their further submissions. In 2018, the average waiting time for a decision on further submissions was only two months but that is because some people receive a decision very quickly (eg if you have been told by the Home Office that they are going to remove you from the UK, and then give further submissions, the Home Office tends to reject these in a matter of days) – this therefore makes the average waiting time very different from what a lot of people experience. Some people will be waiting much longer – many months, maybe a year or more.

      Reply
      • suhayb on

        Hi, I have applied my asylum claim 22nd of june 2018 and I’m still waiting for my substantive interview it’s been 2 years and 1 month haven’t got any updates from HO will my long waiting period be taken into account or prioritised coz haven’t seen people waiting for 2 years and a month their substantive interviews please if you could tell me anything about this

        Reply
        • RtR on

          Unfortunately a lot of people are waiting many many months for their substantive (big) interview at the moment, and this will have been delayed even further because the Home Office stopped doing interviews for nearly 4 months. However, you have been waiting for a very very long time and should ask your lawyer to contact the Home Office to find out what is happening, and to prioritise your case for an interview.

          Reply
  54. Vahid on

    Hi,

    I had my asylum screening interview on December 2019, and still have not received any information about my case worker and my actual interview. would be possible that i will receive it soon ? it’s been 8 months

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Vahid. Unfortunately a lot of people are waiting many many months for their substantive (big) interview at the moment, and this will have been delayed even further because the Home Office stopped doing interviews for nearly 4 months. However, you can ask your lawyer to contact the Home Office to find out what is happening, and if it possible to prioritise your case for an interview.

      Reply
  55. Fay on

    Hi,
    I’ve had my screening interview already, now just waiting to be called for the next interview. I want to ask how they normally send invitation for the second interview (by post or phone). Also, I need to contact them to notify about my change of address. Do you know the best way to contact them now?
    Thank you

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Fay. In the past, the Home Office usually contacted people with a letter (often they will write to your lawyer, if you have one) about their substantive interview by post. During the lockdown, they have been doing more communicating by email as well.

      You can use this online form to notify about your change of address: https://visa-address-update.service.gov.uk/

      Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Ndu. Yes, the Home Office have restarted *some* substantive interviews – by video only. They are starting with people who live near their video call facilities (to reduce the need for travel). There will be quite a delay still for a lot of people.

      Reply
  56. Drack on

    Hello, I submitted my further submission since December 2018 now is about 19 months, and still I did not receive anything from the home office. I’m asking myself if they forget my case or not. I contacted my local mp in January this year and they said to my Mp that they will make a decision as soon as possible, but still nothing happens. Why do you think about that?

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Unfortunately very long delays in decisions on further submissions are quite common – I am sorry to hear you are one of the people who has been waiting such a long time.

      It’s really good that you got your MP involved to ask – as it’s been about six months since you last asked, you might want to try asking the MP to chase this once more with the Home Office.

      Reply
  57. Ozil No on

    Hi There,
    Hope you are well,

    Thanks for your valuable help
    I have applied with my family for asylum last year in London and still waiting for the main (big) interview.
    Now we have a newborn baby. My question is:

    How can I inform the home office and adding my new baby to the claim? To let you know that I have no solicitor.
    Can you please send me an address or email address so I can contact them and what should the post include apart from the baby birth certificate?

    Regards,

    Reply
    • RtR on

      Hi Ozil. It would definitely be advisable to speak to a solicitor if you can (you can search for a local lawyer using our directories here: https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/lawyers/ ) especially if you do not have current contact details for the Home Office. Make sure the Home Office are aware of your current address in case they try to contact you about the substantive (big) interview, although there are very long delays for many people at the moment. You can update your address with the Home Office here: https://visa-address-update.service.gov.uk

      You can also use this form to update your dependants’ details (which would now include your baby), but we do recommend speaking to a lawyer first if you are able.

      Reply
  58. John on

    Thank you for these updates, they’re really helpful.

    I noticed your latest update that “some local councils have been informed that the Home Office intends to start issuing “notice to quit” letters from the middle of August”. Do you know if Glasgow is one of these areas?

    Reply
      • RtR on

        Hi John. We’ve just heard from Refugee Council that: “Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland will follow a similar process but will start at a later date”

        Reply

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