Most persons subject to immigration control are not eligible. However, there are 5 classes of such persons who are expressly made eligible (or "re-included") by order of the Secretary of State.
Class A - Refugees within the definition in the Refugee Convention article 1 who have leave to enter or remain in the UK, i.e. successful asylum seekers.
Class B - a person who has been granted exceptional leave to enter or remain in the UK outside the provisions of the immigration rules, whose leave is not subject to a condition requiring him to maintain and accommodate himself (and any person dependent on him) without recourse to public funds.
Exceptional leave to enter or remain in the UK was abolished from 1 April 2003. It used to describe leave granted to asylum seekers who were not found to be refugees but who the Home Office, for humanitarian or compassionate reasons, determined that it would not be right to return to their county of origin. Since discretionary leave is also a form of leave granted outside the immigration rules it may also come within the ambit of Class B
[This may need to be updated now that all decisions are treated as being made within the rules]
Class C - a person who has current leave to enter or remain which is not subject to any limitation or condition and who is habitually resident in the UK, the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man and the Republic of Ireland other than a person:
(i) who has been given leave to enter or remain upon an undertaking given by another person (his sponsor) to be responsible for his maintenance and accommodation;
(ii) who has been resident in the UK for less than five years beginning on the date of entry or the date on which the undertaking was given in respect of him, whichever is the later; and
(iii) whose sponsor or, where there is more than one sponsor, at least one of whose sponsors, is still alive.
Introduced 1 April 2003. Humanitarian Protection is leave granted to a person who, if removed, would face a serious risk to life or person arising from capital punishment, unlawful killing or torture or inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment in the country of return. While they do not satisfy the criteria laid down in Article 1 (A)2 of the Refugee Convention
, they would be at risk of treatment in violation of Article 2
or Article 3
of the ECHR.
Even if a person is able to establish that there is a real risk of a breach of his human rights, he will not be granted Humanitarian Protection if he comes within various exclusion criteria. These include those whose presence in the UK is considered not to be conducive to the public good and/or they are considered a threat to security. Those who would have been granted humanitarian protection but are subject to the exclusion criteria are normally granted a limited period of discretionary leave to remain. Where the risk of treatment in violation of Article 3
arises owing to a medical condition Humanitarian Protection is not given but the person will be considered for Discretionary Leave instead.
Class E - a person who is an asylum-seeker whose claim for asylum is recorded by the Secretary of State as having been made before 3 April 200o within the circumstances mentioned in one of the following paragraphs -
(a) on arrival (other than on his re-entry) in the United Kingston from a country outside the United Kingdom, the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man or the Republic of Ireland;
(b) within three months from the day on which the Secretary of State made a relevant declaration, and the applicant was in Great Britain on the day on which the declaration was made; or
(c) on or before 4th February 1996 by an applicant who was on that date entitled to benefit under regulation 7A of the Housing Benefit (General)Regulations 1987 (persons from abroad).
For the purposes of Class E, asylum seeker means a person who is at least 18 years old, who is in the UK and who has made a claim for asylum. A claim for asylum means a claim that it would be contrary to the UK's obligations under the Refugee Convention for the claimant to be removed from, or required to leave, the UK. A person ceases to be an asylum-seeker when his claim for asylum is recorded by the Secretary of State as having been decided (other than on appeal) or abandoned.
A relevant declaration means a declaration to the effect that the country of which the applicant is a national is subject to such a fundamental change of circumstances that the secretary of state would not normally order the return of a person to that country. The only claims for asylum currently affected are those by Sierra Leone nationals from 16 May to 16 August 1997, and those made by Democratic Republic of Congo nationals between 1 July and 1 October 1997.
The significance of 3 April 2000 is that a person who claimed asylum on arrival in the UK, on or after that date was no longer supported by local authorities but by the National Asylum Support Service ("NASS"). In July 2006 the Home Office announced that NASS no longer existed as a separate department. Asylum support is now administered by two separate routes. Those who made their first asylum claim on or after 5 March 2007 have their support processed under the New Asylum Model ("NAM") case owner who is processing their asylum claim. Applicants who claimed asylum before 5 March 2007, known as legacy cases, should have their asylum and support claims dealt with by the Casework Resolution Directorate ("CRD).
Applicants who come within Class E are not automatically eligible for assistance. Section 186 of the Housing Act 1996
states that such a person or his dependant is not eligible if he has any accommodation in the UK, however temporary, available for his accommodation.
For the purposes of this section a person becomes an asylum seeker at the time when his claim is recorded by the secretary of state as having been made and ceases to be an asylum seeker when is claim is recorded as having been finally determined or abandoned.
A dependent means a spouse or child under 18 and becomes such when the secretary of state records him as being a dependent of the asylum seeker and ceases to be a dependent wen the claimant ceases to be an asylum seeker, or, if earlier when he is recorded by the secretary of state as ceasing to be a dependent. The section defines a claim for asylum as one made pursuant to the Refugee Convention
- a person who is habitually resident in the United Kingdom, the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man or the Republic of Ireland and who has limited leave to enter the UK as a relevant Afghan Citizen under paragraph 276BA1 of the Immigration Rules. This class was introduced by the Allocation of Housing and Homelessness (Eligibility) (England) (Amendment) Regulations
2014 SI No 435 regulation 2 with effect from 31 March 2014. It applies to certain Afghan citizens who were locally employed by the UK government in Afghanistan and have since been granted limited leave to remain in the UK.