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Domestic abuse victims increasingly refused right to remain in UK

FOI request reveals doubling of refusals between 2012 and 2016

The refusal rate for people applying to stay in the UK after suffering domestic violence more than doubled between 2012 and 2016.

In 2002, the Government introduced the domestic violence Rule, which allows women on spousal visas to apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain in the UK if they can prove that domestic violence is the cause of a breakdown of the relationship with their spouse. In 2012 The Destitution Domestic Violence Concession (DDVC) was introduced to support women who do not have recourse to public funds. Provided that certain criteria are satisfied, the DDVC helps such women to leave their partner safely and secure their immigration status in the UK.

However, a Freedom of Information (FOI) request by The Guardian has revealed that the refusal rate for applications under the domestic violence rule rose from 12 per cent in 2012 to 30 per cent in 2016, the last year for which full-year data were available. The figures show that 1,325 people were refused out of a total of 5,820 applications made between 2012 and 2016.

For the article in The Guardian, click here.