The Bill is a draft published on 14 July 2008 to facilitate consultation. Some parts of it are still missing. The government’s intention is that a Bill be tabled in Parliament in the autumn of 2008. The draft Bill is the next stage in a process initiated by the Border and Immigration Agency (now the UK Border Agency) in June 2007 when it issued a consultative paper “Simplifying Immigration Law. The emphasis in that paper was on simplification rather than consolidation (as explained later) and on the introduction of the points based system for the issue of work permits…….
The object of asylum and immigration appeals is very different from that of civil litigation. In the latter the judge should properly remain aloof and simply pass judgment on the basis of evidence and legal submissions. But these appeals are concerned with the rights and duties of individuals as against the state and the obligations of the towards foreign nationals who wish to visit, settle, claim asylum or whatever and in large measure to enjoy the same state benefits as its citizens. The immigration judge should be concerned to elicit the truth in proceedings before him, having regard to the public interest in every appeal. Migrationwatch made a similar statement in proceedings before the House of Commons Constitutional Affairs Committee in 2003 and 2004. (See Second Report of the Session 2003-04, Volume II, page 60). In our view this Bill is an opportunity to make this significant improvement to the system.