- What Is a Fresh Asylum Claim?
- The Legal Test for a Fresh Asylum Claim
- Who Can Make a Fresh Asylum Claim in the UK?
- How to Make a Fresh Claim for Asylum?
- Required Documents for a Fresh Asylum Claim
- Home Office Decision on Your Asylum Claim
- How Manchester Immigration Lawyers Can Help You
- Frequently Asked Questions
What Is a Fresh Asylum Claim?
When an applicant seeking asylum in the UK has had their original claim refused by the Home Office, and they have subsequently exhausted all their appeal rights against that refusal decision, they can submit a fresh claim for asylum, provided they are able to submit new evidence in support of their claim.
Such evidence must not have been there when the Home Office initially reviewed your asylum claim nor presented in the court while your appeal was being heard.
It may contain new information about the original reason(s) you claimed asylum in the UK, or your circumstances may have changed since you have had your appeal heard and dismissed.
Further submissions of evidence is also possible if the situation in your home country has changed since, or the relevant case laws and rules have changed.
In all scenarios, your new evidence will have to include new information pertinent to your case to be considered as a fresh claim.
Moreover, please note that further submissions of evidence in support of your claim alone will not be sufficient to classify your asylum claim as a ‘fresh claim’ technically. You or your legal representative will have to first submit such evidence to the Home Office.
The Home Office will then review the evidence and decide whether or not it amounts to a fresh claim as per the fresh claims legal test.
Paragraph 353 of the Immigration Rules states that further submissions of evidence will amount to a fresh claim only if they are ‘significantly different’ from the evidence that have already been considered by the Home Office and the immigration tribunals.
The Home Office will consider whether the new evidence submitted by you meets the following criteria:
- The evidence has not already been considered, and
- When taken together with previously considered evidence, it creates a realistic prospect of success of your claim, notwithstanding the rejection of previous evidence by both the Home Office and the tribunals
The Home Office will conduct a two-part legal test while considering further submissions made by an asylum applicant.
Has the Evidence Already Been Considered?
If the further evidence submitted by you has already been considered by the Home Office while reviewing your original asylum claim, or heard by the tribunal during the subsequent appeal process and dismissed, then the first criterion as stated in paragraph 353 of the Immigration Rules is not met.
So, in effect, there is no fresh claim, and the Home Office may reject these further submissions by you, unless there has been a significant change in circumstances, e.g. a change in the situation of your home country or a change in the relevant case law.
If the evidence is something that has not already been considered either during the original claim review process or the appeal process, the Home Office will proceed to the second part of the legal test.
Is There a Realistic Prospect of Success?
The Home Office will assess if the new evidence, when taken together with the evidence previously submitted and considered, has a realistic prospect of success. In other words, whether the new evidence prepares the ground for a new argument in favour of the asylum applicant’s case, and can potentially result in an immigration tribunal taking a different view.
The Home Office can, however, raise a question at this stage as to why the new evidence has not been submitted sooner. A late disclosure, particularly if there is no valid reason behind the same, can very well be challenged by the Home Office and used as a reason to refuse your claim.
So, it is of utmost importance that you are able to satisfactorily explain to the Home Office, if questioned, why you did not submit the new evidence sooner.
Who Can Make a Fresh Asylum Claim in the UK?
To be able to make a fresh asylum claim, you will have to meet the following requirements:
- Your original claim has been refused by the Home Office or has been withdrawn
- You have been through every available appeal process, and your appeal has been heard and dismissed by the courts. You have no more right to appeal
- You are physically present in the UK while submitting new evidence
How to Make a Fresh Claim for Asylum?
Before you make a fresh asylum claim, please go through all the documents and evidence that have been submitted, reviewed, discussed and argued so far in your case both by the Home Office and the immigration tribunals, as well as the Home Office original refusal letter and the court orders.
Such documents may include (but not limited to):
- Copy of the form filled out by the Home Office during your screening interview
- Transcripts and audio recordings of your asylum substantive interview
- Previous documentary evidence submitted by you to the Home Office and/or in the court
- Witness statements (if any)
- The Reasons for Refusal Letter sent to you by the Home Office
- Copies of the judgement of your asylum appeal
Analysing the above will be your starting point in preparing for new evidence. Moreover, if the situation in your home country or the relevant case law has since changed, you will need to consider the same while gathering new evidence in support of your claim.
Once you have gathered the new evidence, please make sure you have a detailed explanation of the same ready with you as well as valid reasons why such evidence has not been submitted to the Home Office or in front of the immigration tribunals earlier.
You will have to submit your new evidence in person at any of the Further Submissions Unit (FSU) offices in Liverpool, Belfast, Cardiff or Glasgow, unless you have permission to send your evidence by post.
If you have any of the following conditions, you can ask FSU for permission to submit your new evidence by post:
- You are disabled or ill, and therefore unable to travel
- You are being detained or are in prison
- You are an unaccompanied minor seeking asylum
- You have been granted permission to proceed with a judicial review
- You have a judicial review ongoing, challenging a removal or enforcement decision
Additionally, you may be able to submit your submissions at your usual reporting event in case you are in the Family Returns Process. Moreover, if your further submissions are based only on Article 8 family/private life, you will have to make an application online.
Otherwise, please call the FSU to make an appointment for an in-person submission of new evidence.
Required Documents for a Fresh Asylum Claim
You will be required to submit the following documents to FSU while making a fresh asylum claim:
- Completed and signed further submissions form, as downloaded from the Home Office website
- Documents proving your identity (if you have them available with you):
- Your valid passport
- IS96 or Bail 201 with your photo
- Your previous immigration status document, e.g. your Application Registration Card (ARC)
- Your driving licence
- Documents supporting the new evidence on which your fresh asylum claim is based, such as:
- Evidence proving that the individuals responsible for your persecution in your home country are still active in your pursuit
- Evidence that establishes your credibility
- Evidence proving that there has been a change in the situation of your home country
- Evidence proving that there has been an amendment in your relevant case law
- Evidence showing your involvement with UK-based groups relevant to your asylum claim, e.g. LGBTQ+ groups if your persecution in your home country was due to your sexual preference
- Any other information pertinent to your case
- You may also consider submitting a letter explaining in detail the following:
- That these documents constitute your further submissions
- The nature of the new evidence you are submitting
- How you have obtained this new evidence
- Why you believe your further submissions amount to a fresh asylum claim
- How this new evidence demonstrates that you are eligible to be granted permission to remain in the UK
If you have received your documentary evidence by post, please keep the envelope in which the evidence has arrived, showing receipt and/or date of delivery. This may help in proving why you were not able to submit this evidence previously.
Applicants submitting false evidence can be prosecuted and forced to leave the UK.
Usually, the Home Office makes a decision quickly after receiving further submissions if they believe such submissions do not amount to a fresh claim, and intend to remove you from the UK.
However, they may take several months or even more than a year for claims with more merit. You may email the Home Office to check the status of your further submissions, and whether or not such submissions are being considered as a fresh claim.
The Home Office Agrees That Your Further Submissions Are a Fresh Claim
If the Home Office agrees with you that your further submissions meet the fresh claim criteria, they will go on reviewing your evidence. They may make a decision solely based on your evidence.
In some cases, the Home Office may also reach out to the applicant to arrange for an interview, asking questions like they did during the initial asylum substantive interview.
If after reviewing your further submissions and/or interviewing you the Home Office is convinced that you will face persecution if you return to your home country or you meet the human rights rules to stay in the UK, they will grant you permission to remain in the country with a refugee status or on humanitarian protection grounds. You can also be granted any other leave to remain based on your human rights claim.
However, if the Home Office decides that although your further submissions meet the criteria of a fresh claim, you still do not need to be given protection/the right to stay in the UK, they will refuse your fresh claim. You will have the right to appeal this decision, similar to your original asylum claim process.
The Home Office Decides Your Evidence Fails the Legal Test
In case the Home Office decides that your further submissions do not meet the legal test requirements and subsequently cannot be called a fresh claim, they will reject your submissions, and you will run the risk of being detained and removed from the country.
No appeal is possible in such a scenario. However, you may be able to seek a judicial review of this decision by the Home Office.
Making a fresh asylum claim in the UK is a challenging affair from many perspectives. Firstly, you will have to ensure that your further submissions have the merit to meet the Home Office criteria to be acknowledged as a fresh claim.
You will have to be very attentive and careful while submitting the documentary evidence, since any incomplete or incorrect submission will put your asylum claim in the UK in jeopardy.
A fresh claim can only be made when you have exhausted all your rights of appeal, meaning your case has been heard at length by the immigration tribunals and superior courts and dismissed.
Unless the situation in your home country has since changed significantly or there is a considerable subsequent amendment in your relevant case law, it may be quite difficult to prove that you are making further submissions because of new evidence that you did not possess while submitting your original asylum claim or during the appeal process.
The Home Office will definitely challenge your evidence if they find a case of late disclosure without valid reasons, and use the same as a ground to refuse your claim.
A fresh asylum claim is thus, understandably, a complex legal matter, and calls for specialist knowledge and experience in immigration law. It is advisable that you seek legal representation once you have exhausted your rights to appeal, and/or as soon as you have decided to submit a fresh claim on the strength of new evidence you have gathered.
At Manchester Immigration Lawyers, our expert immigration lawyers can advise and assist you with your fresh claim application and further submissions, even if your circumstances are particularly complicated.
We can also offer emergency support in case the Home Office has refused your further submissions and is taking steps to detain you or have you removed from the UK.
Dial +44 (0)161 826 9783 today to consult with one of our legal team members.
Last modified on November 9th, 2023 at 10:17 am
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Yes, you can stay in the UK while the Home Office reviews your fresh asylum claim. As per the Immigration Rules, an asylum seeker who has made further submissions shall not be removed from the UK before the Secretary of State has considered such submissions under paragraph 353 of the said rules or otherwise.
However, please note that making further submissions does not automatically mean that you can remain in the UK.
Upon receiving your further submissions, the Home Office may inform you that such submissions will not be considered to be a fresh claim. They can also detain you at the same time and/or attempt removal if you fail to prove that you have submitted a fresh claim.
After receiving your asylum claim, the Home Office may either agree on the validity of your claim and grant you leave to remain in the UK, or refuse your claim and ask you to leave the country.
A decision of inadmissibility from the Home Office, however, is not a decision on your asylum claim. It rather means that the Home Office believes you do not qualify to even claim asylum in the UK.
In effect, you will not be eligible to make further submissions for a fresh claim if a decision of inadmissibility is issued by the Home Office while refusing your original asylum claim.