Most migrants to the UK from outside of the European Economic Area (EEA) will be aware that the 'No Recourse to Public Funds' (NPRF) restriction prohibits access to forms of public funding. Public funds include benefits such as Universal Credit, child benefit, housing benefits, and tax credits. EU and EEA citizens are subject to similar restrictions on benefits in the UK, however those with the 'right to reside' (i.e. Settled Status under the EU Settlement Scheme) and who are 'habitually resident' will have full access to public funds.
Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has significantly exacerbated any financial difficulties that migrants to the UK who were unable to claim public financial help were already experiencing.
At the end of March 2020, the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) published a short briefing on the economic risks of the pandemic for migrant workers, and how the Government could and should implement a 'social safety net'. Specifically, it confirms that based on the Government's own labour data, migrants are likely to be disproportionately affected by COVID-19; Drawing on data from the Labour Force Survey, we find that migrants are more likely to be working in industries affected by the crisis, including accommodation and food services. Moreover, migrants are more likely to be self-employed and in temporary work, putting them at particular risk of losing their livelihoods as a result of the crisis. Finally, migrants are far less likely to own their own home and more likely to be in private rented accommodation, placing their households in a financially precarious situation as the coronavirus emergency develops. As such, there is a 'double whammy' effect being experienced by many migrants as a result of less secure working and living arrangements.
As the IPPR goes on to say, there is a third risk factor, that being the lack of a 'social safety net'. As they state, despite these risks, many migrants in the UK have only a limited social safety net, given that visa conditions often include barriers to accessing public funds. This means that migrants face the unenviable choice of continuing to work in spite of the health risks of losing their livelihoods. This poses a significant danger to both individual workers and to efforts to minimise the transmission of the virus. We, therefore, propose emergency measures to lift restrictions on access to benefits and public services, in order to limit the economic fallout of coronavirus and protect public health.
Several weeks have now passed this the IPPR published their recommendation that restrictions on access to benefits and public services for migrants should be lifted due to COVID-19, and as yet, the Government does not seem to have heeded this advice in the form of a blanket policy. It has, however, made some individual and limited concessions.
In limited circumstances, there are some public funding options available to migrants who are subject to NPRF restrictions, including :
There are other public funding sources which may be considered by migrants in the UK - these are typically exceptions which apply in very specific circumstances, including:
And according to a House of Commons briefing paper, there are a number of COVID-19 related policy concessions now available to some migrants with the NPRF restriction, including:
The Government has made available additional funding to local authorities to help vulnerable groups, including migrants subject to NPRF. According to the Home Office, the Government has made over £3.2 billion available to local authorities in England and devolved administrations to support vulnerable groups. They say that this funding will assist local authorities across the UK with providing accommodation and support to vulnerable people who are at risk of, or who have been diagnosed with, Covid-19. We will continue to work closely with local authorities to ensure that they have the resource they need to protect people who are currently, or at risk of, sleeping rough. As such, any migrant struggling with housing should contact their local authority immediately to discuss how they can assist.
For any migrant in the UK on a partner visa who is currently being affected by domestic violence and will be eligible for indefinite leave to remain (ILR), the Destitution Domestic Violence Concession (DDVC) is available. This provides leave for three months' leave independent from their sponsoring partner, as well as recourse to public funds to find safe accommodation while applying for ILR.
The NPRF restriction is added to the financial difficulties already being felt by thousands of migrants in the UK as a result of COVID-19. The Government has made some concessions and migrants with NPRF can utilise very limited forms of public funding, but it will likely fall to charities and non-public funding providers to fill the gap left behind by the state.
It's a shame that you dont have an 'Excellent' star rating on here, as my experience with Reiss Edwards is nothing short of an excellent rating. They handled my application for an Indefinite Leave to remain in April 2014 and did my husband's one very recently including my daughter. Every time i have approached them, they have continued to treat me with courtesy, respect and patience. Amar was indeed a very thorough and professional gentleman. He is very knowledgeable, corporative and engaging. He responded to my emails, calls and enquiries promptly. He was always reassuring. I could not have asked for a better Immigration service. I would recommend them over and over again for anyone looking for an immigration advice. They gave me a free immigration advice when i called them, and the quality of the advice was something other charge thousands for. If you need a particular, name, Amar would be it. He exemplifies, for me, the true, professional gentleman. He is a valuable asset to Reiss Edwards.
I am glad that i instructed Reiss Edwards on my visa matter. It started with a 20 minutes free immigration advice. I met with Amar to discuss my ILR refusal. He gave me a great deal of quality advice and decided to take on my messy case. I had doubts on the merits of my case by he was relatively convinced he could win it. That made me quite secure. To be honest, things did not start as quick as I would have wanted, but they kept on communicating the process and state of things to me.A big thank you to Verusha and Foram. They were also very helpful. Brilliant and informative. Their fee was fair and reasonable, especially if you compare them to other law firms and immigration law firms in London; some of whom even told me that i would not be able to get an indefinte leave to remain in this country. The process was long but was worth it. In the end, a big thank you to Reiss Edwards.
Investing over 2 million pounds is defintely not a routine decision. We had to make sure that the Tier 1 investor immigration lawyers that we'd be picking has to be one of the best within the Tier 1 investor category. We contacted Reiss Edwards and they were able to get us not only the Tier 1 investor visa but also suggested profitable investment portfolios in addition to what we already had in mind.
TI have just had British Citizenship application approved. Prior to making the application, i was not sure which law firm i should hire to facilitate the paperwork. After a few hours of research, i decided to go with Reiss Edwards and i must confess that i wasnt disappointed. The immigration lawyers at Reiss Edwards handled my case well and they really knew what they were doing. They were fully aware of what documents I needed and it was easy for them to tell if my case was going to be easy or not. At the end of the day, I have not received my British citizenship within 3 months. If anyone is looking for a good immigration lawyer to handle thier case, contact Reiss Edwards.
My wife's spouse visa extension application was refused by the Home Office and they gave her 14 days to leave the country. We contacted Reiss Edwards and they said "OK don't worry we will sort this out". They put together the list of documents for me to obtain and they prepared a bundle which was as thick as the printer it came out from.We followed everything they asked us to do and in the end we won our appeal and got our spouse visa. We can't recommend them enough and we have promised ourselves never to make any more UK visa applications without them.
The team of lawyers at Reiss Edwards are very professional and friendly people. Their experience in and around UK immigration law is quite extensive; be sure that you application is in safe and competent hands. My immigration matter was an indefinite leave to remain application based on Tier 1 on a self-employment basis. The immigration lawyers at Reiss Edwards made sure that the application was perfect and ready to be accepted. I got a positive decision and I recommend them highly for anyone who needs a UK immigration help.
I contacted Reiss Edwards to help me with my wife's UK settlement visa. They acted with utmost professionalism throughout the entire application. I spoke with Joe Dinh, he is an immigration solicitor and he is one of the best solicitors out there. He ensured that there was little to no room for error. At some point I thought he was over cautious. He remained calmed and continued to assure us on our immigration matter. Most people in his position would have panicked but he was calmed and continued to assure us. We received out positive outcome very quickly.
I have been using Reiss Edwards for three years now for my family's immigration application. Both for my initial application and extension. They are really affordable. The team of solicitors at this firm are probably one of the most efficient and economical in terms of cost. They offered free advice over the phone and spent good time with us before inviting us for consultation.
Reiss Edwards is a top notch immigration service company. The way they handled our documentation and also the list of documents they sent was efficient and top quality. They helped us professionally throughout the process. We are very happy with the immigration advice we received from the team. We highly recommend them.
I used Reiss Edwards immigration lawyers to assist with my immigration matter and that of my family. It was an EX1 application. They dealt with the matter properly and even when complications were coming up from the Home Office, they helped resolve the issue properly. They are very professional and are very popular in London. I am happy to have worked with them.
This is the only firm that i spoke with that didn't ask for money before listening to me, will be using them again.
I used Reiss Edwards for my Tier 2 visa application and it was successful. The team was ever present and happy to answer my question. The caseworker that dealing with my case went on holiday yet by case did not suffer one bit. Another lawyer stepped and took over the case without any hassle.
My Tier 1 Investor Visa was dealt with quickly and without issue. Would recommend Reiss Edwards as an Immigration law firm in London. Thank you to the team.
530 ReviewsREAD ALL REVIEWS