Members of Parliament handle a high volume of immigration, nationality and asylum enquiries from constituents.
The Commons Library has produced a briefing which provides a brief overview of the UK’s immigration and asylum system and basic British nationality law.
It also outlines the legal restrictions on giving immigration advice, gives some suggestions on handling constituents’ enquiries, refers to some sources of information that may be helpful for straightforward questions, and highlights training courses available to Members’ staff.
Parliament has been recalled on Wednesday 18 August 2021 to debate the situation in Afghanistan.
You can find relevant Commons Library research and analysis on the Commons Library website here: https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/type/research-briefing/
Please note that the situation in Afghanistan is fast moving and briefings should be read as correct at the time of publication.
House of Commons Library Briefing
The Commons Library has produced a briefing on gift vouchers and insolvency, relating to what happens to consumers’ gift vouchers and other prepayments when a retailer becomes insolvent.
You can read the summary and download the full briefing here: https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/research-briefings/sn06540/
This briefing paper explains the status of directly-elected mayors in English and Welsh local government, and the routes to establishing them, including the use of local referendums. It also includes an up-to-date list of elected mayors and statistics on previous referendums.
Find the briefing here: https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/research-briefings/sn05000/
The Commons Library has published a new research briefing looking at online scams. In addition to looking at the scale of the problem, it considers the different types of scams, who are the targeted victims, and what is being done to combat them.
You can find it here: https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/research-briefings/cbp-9214/
The Commons Library has published a new research briefing looking at the results of the local elections that took place in England on 6 May 2021.
You can find it here: https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/research-briefings/cbp-9228/
The number of couples choosing to live together (cohabit) without getting married or entering a civil partnership, in what is often called “a common law marriage”, increased by 137% between 1996 and 2020.
Although cohabitating couples do have legal protection in several areas, such as under the law relating to domestic abuse, cohabitation gives no general legal status to a couple, unlike marriage and civil partnership from which many legal rights and responsibilities flow. Many people are unaware this is the case.
This briefing provides information about the number of cohabiting couples, how the law applies to them, the Law Commission’s proposals for reform, and other calls for reform.
You can find the briefing here: “Common law marriage” and cohabitation
The House of Commons Library has published a briefing paper which provides answers to frequently asked questions about international travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Coronavirus: International Travel FAQs for England
This paper is a compilation of frequently asked questions about international travel from and to England, and how it is affected by current restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
The paper addresses the following questions:
- What is the international travel ban?
- What are the reasonable excuses for travel?
- Who is exempt from the international travel ban and travel requirements?
- What are the penalties for international travel offences?
- I’m travelling to the UK, what do I need to do?
- What COVID-19 testing is required after arrival in England?
- What is the “test to release” scheme?
- What is hotel quarantine for travel from “red list” countries?
- Are there any exemptions from Hotel quarantine?
- What if I cannot afford to pay for Hotel Quarantine?
- When can I go on holiday?
- I can’t fly because of lockdown, but my flight wasn’t cancelled, what are my options?
The Commons Library has produced a Universal Credit reading list covering the new benefit from its development more than a decade ago through to April 2020.
What is the Privy Council?
The Privy Council is an advisory body to the Monarch; its members are known as Privy Counsellors. It is one of the oldest parts of the UK’s constitutional arrangements, with its origins dating back to at least the thirteenth century.
Find out more in this Commons Library Research Briefing which looks at the role and powers of the Privy Council: https://commonslibrary.parliament.uk/research-briefings/cbp-7460/