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Adult Dependant relatives

The adult dependent relative category changed significantly as part of the changes to the family migration rules. Previously, parents or grandparents over the age of 65 could apply to come to the UK as an adult dependent relative if they could prove that they were wholly or mainly financially dependent on the UK sponsor. They would need to demonstrate that they did not have any other close relatives in their country to adequately support or care for them. They would also need to show that they could be adequately maintained and accommodated without recourse to public funds in the UK by the sponsor. Other adult relatives (such as aunts and uncles) could apply but if they could demonstrate that there were “exceptional compassionate circumstances’.

The current rules permit a non-EEA adult dependent relative of a British or settled person, or a person in the UK with refugee leave or humanitarian protection, to settle here if they can demonstrate that, as a result of age, illness or disability, that they require a level of long-term personal care that can only be provided in the UK by their relative here and without recourse to public funds. Individuals cannot switch into this category from within the UK. They must apply for entry clearance from the Entry Clearance Officer (ECO).

The individual applying to enter and remain in the UK must, as a result of age, illness or disability, require long-term personal care with performing everyday tasks (washing and cooking for instance). The individual must demonstrate that he or she cannot receive the care in his/her country of origin, even with the practical and financial help of the UK based sponsor. For instance, this could be because the care is not available in the country of origin or it is not affordable or there is no one in the country of origin that can reasonably provide the said care.

In addition, the individual must demonstrate that they will be adequately maintained and accommodated in the UK by the sponsor without recourse to public funds.  The sponsor will be required to sign an undertaking to this effect.

This effect of the changes in the immigration rules means that, healthy grandparents and elderly dependents can no longer apply.


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At Descartes Solicitors our experienced lawyers can assist you whether you are making an initial or fresh application, whether you have been refused and wish to exercise a right of appeal or even where you have been denied a right of appeal.

For further information please contact us on 0208 995 3556 or on 0844 556 9901. You can also email us at email us at or complete our enquiries box through this website.