SYRIAN FAMILY FUND
We are setting up and fundraising for a fund to support the work we do with Syrian families appealing against refusal of entry clearance.
We are now advising Syrians who have refugee status but whose families’ applications for family reunion have been refused. These individuals face the prospect of considerable expense related to the bringing of appeals at the same time as they have very limited financial resources.
The cost of an oral hearing at the First Tier Tribunal is £140 for each appellant. In some cases the family members may not qualify for the free application for family reunion and may have to pay an application fee of £378. In some cases there may be the need for DNA evidence which costs around £380 to test for the parents of one child.
The case worker will at every stage attempt to reduce costs through standard procedures. For example there is a procedure for applying for remission of appeal fees if the appellant can produce evidence of their finances which indicate that they do not have the money to pay. However this application may not be successful and the Syrian Family Fund may be used in these circumstances if the caseworker has already judged the appellant’s finances to be such that they need assistance.
The Syrian Family Fund will be administered by the advice centre manager upon application by the relevant case worker. If the case worker is unhappy with the decision there will be an appeal to the management committee.
The case worker will have to produce evidence of the appellant’s finances, will have to justify the merits of an appeal or application and will have to justify the use of DNA evidence or any other related expenses.
Accounts for the fund will be kept and will be available for inspection by the management committee and any other party with a proper interest bearing in mind that the confidentiality policy of the advice centre applies in all cases.
Fund raising will be through the organisation of events, collections and individual donation.
Although this fund will be set up in the first instance to support Syrian families, the families of refugees of other nationalities will be also be considered for support.