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When is residency, residency?

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didds
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When is residency, residency?

#332915

Postby didds » August 13th, 2020, 2:04 pm

Following some idle curiositity I googled about gaining 2nd passports. The country this query is based on is Portugal but other than that is not in itself pertinent. So please lets not get wrapped up in PT specifically, and neither take this too seriously. This is mere idle speculation etc

PT's requirements are amongst other things:

During the first year of the residence permit you will be required to spend a minimum of four months in the country and can’t leave for more than 6 consecutive months at a time.

After the first year, your temporary residence permit renews in two-year intervals.

During each two year period you have to spend at least 16 months in the country and can’t can’t leave for more than 6 consecutive months.


Given PT shares a land border with ES, which shares a land border with FR and from theer the rest of mainland Europe onwards etc ... and PT is in Shengen...

How would PT ever know if you were resident or not? You could bugger off over the border and pretty much go anywhere within Schenegen particularly ... even probably coming to the UK where uoud be processed by UK Border people you probably wont end up on anything "obvious" to PT/have a passoport franked if you were most European countries at least etc etc etc. ?

Merely idle curiosity :-)

didds

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#332953

Postby ursaminortaur » August 13th, 2020, 4:21 pm

didds wrote:Following some idle curiositity I googled about gaining 2nd passports. The country this query is based on is Portugal but other than that is not in itself pertinent. So please lets not get wrapped up in PT specifically, and neither take this too seriously. This is mere idle speculation etc

PT's requirements are amongst other things:

During the first year of the residence permit you will be required to spend a minimum of four months in the country and can’t leave for more than 6 consecutive months at a time.

After the first year, your temporary residence permit renews in two-year intervals.

During each two year period you have to spend at least 16 months in the country and can’t can’t leave for more than 6 consecutive months.


Given PT shares a land border with ES, which shares a land border with FR and from theer the rest of mainland Europe onwards etc ... and PT is in Shengen...

How would PT ever know if you were resident or not? You could bugger off over the border and pretty much go anywhere within Schenegen particularly ... even probably coming to the UK where uoud be processed by UK Border people you probably wont end up on anything "obvious" to PT/have a passoport franked if you were most European countries at least etc etc etc. ?

Merely idle curiosity :-)

didds


Citizenship and residency are different. Just having residency does not allow you freedom to move across EU borders and although there will be no border checks within the Schengen area you might well be asked to prove your identity when booking a hotel room etc whilst in another Schengen country*. As to them not knowing I would presume that the burden of proof that you were in the country for those periods would fall on you rather than them having to prove you weren't.

* I seem to recall that there has been some argument over whether british ex-pats who obtained residency in an EU state would have freedom of movement to other EU states after the transition period ends - I'm not sure what the current position is on that.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#332958

Postby Snorvey » August 13th, 2020, 4:40 pm

Citizenship and residency are different. Just having residency does not allow you freedom to move across EU borders and although there will be no border checks within the Schengen area you might well be asked to prove your identity

yeah, I wouldn't like to get caught in, say, Spain with a Brexit British passport and a only a Portuguese Residency permit.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#332959

Postby Lootman » August 13th, 2020, 4:43 pm

ursaminortaur wrote:As to them not knowing I would presume that the burden of proof that you were in the country for those periods would fall on you rather than them having to prove you weren't.

But in practice how do you prove that you were somewhere if that place is your home, absent passport checks in and out?

I can generally prove when I am overseas by producing flight itineraries, hotel reservations, car hire details etc. But how can I reasonably be asked to prove I was at home doing nothing? (I guess my wife could testify to that but that might not be deemed probative).

So if I claimed non-residency, say for tax purposes, then I would be able to prove my periods of non-residency. But here it is the opposite - I am invited to prove my residency. It seems to me that if I claim residency then the authorities would have to disprove that claim, since nothing reasonably could count as proof that I wasn't elsewhere.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#332965

Postby ursaminortaur » August 13th, 2020, 4:58 pm

Lootman wrote:
ursaminortaur wrote:As to them not knowing I would presume that the burden of proof that you were in the country for those periods would fall on you rather than them having to prove you weren't.

But in practice how do you prove that you were somewhere if that place is your home, absent passport checks in and out?

I can generally prove when I am overseas by producing flight itineraries, hotel reservations, car hire details etc. But how can I reasonably be asked to prove I was at home doing nothing? (I guess my wife could testify to that but that might not be deemed probative).

So if I claimed non-residency, say for tax purposes, then I would be able to prove my periods of non-residency. But here it is the opposite - I am invited to prove my residency. It seems to me that if I claim residency then the authorities would have to disprove that claim, since nothing reasonably could count as proof that I wasn't elsewhere.


Isn't that exactly the problem that EU citizens in the UK have with the settlement system where they have to prove 5 years continuous residency.

https://www.gov.uk/settled-status-eu-citizens-families/what-youll-need-to-apply

To be eligible for settled status, you usually need to have lived in the UK, the Channel Islands or the Isle of Man for at least 6 months in any 12 month period for 5 years in a row. You need to provide proof of this when you apply.

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/eu-settlement-scheme-evidence-of-uk-residence

annual bank statement or account summary, showing at least 6 months of payments received or spending in the UK
employer letter confirming employment and evidence that the employer is genuine, for example, their Companies House number
council tax bill
letter or certificate from your school, college, university or other accredited educational or training organisation showing the dates you enrolled, attended and completed your course
invoice for fees from your school, college, university or other accredited educational or training organisation and evidence of payment
document showing a UK address from a student finance body in England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland or from the Student Loans Company
residential mortgage statement or rental agreement and evidence of payment
letter from a registered care home confirming your residence there
employer pension contributions
annual business account of a self-employed person
a P60 for a 12-month period – your P60 shows the tax you’ve paid on your salary in the tax year (6 April to 5 April). We may ask you for additional evidence to confirm that you were resident here for at least 6 months of that period.
a P45 showing the length of your previous employment. You should get a P45 from your employer when you stop working for them.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#332974

Postby didds » August 13th, 2020, 5:28 pm

ursaminortaur wrote:Citizenship and residency are different..


I'll reiterate my query. PT requires residency for various periods/lengths of time to qualify for a passport yadda yadda yadda.

My query is how would they know if you are resident or not when you have free movement to other contries from where you can go almost anywhere (principally because of shengen in this case, but becasue another passport permits you to do so)


I'm not asking about citizenship. I didnt ask about citizenship.


didds

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#332979

Postby ursaminortaur » August 13th, 2020, 5:45 pm

didds wrote:
ursaminortaur wrote:Citizenship and residency are different..


I'll reiterate my query. PT requires residency for various periods/lengths of time to qualify for a passport yadda yadda yadda.

My query is how would they know if you are resident or not when you have free movement to other contries from where you can go almost anywhere (principally because of shengen in this case, but becasue another passport permits you to do so)


I'm not asking about citizenship. I didnt ask about citizenship.


didds


Sorry if my answer wasn't clear - As far as I am aware as with the UK's settlement program for EU citizens the onus would be on you to prove with documentation that you were resident for the required periods.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#332980

Postby UncleEbenezer » August 13th, 2020, 5:56 pm

ursaminortaur wrote:Sorry if my answer wasn't clear - As far as I am aware as with the UK's settlement program for EU citizens the onus would be on you to prove with documentation that you were resident for the required periods.


Gets interesting if the press get onto the case - c.f. Windrush.

Not an answer, but I expect the idea is that the vast majority can rely on evidence such as where they've paid taxes, been registered with local institutions, etc.

There's probably a clue in the EU rules, where five years legal residence under Freedom of Movement qualifies you to apply for citizenship. But freedom of movement isn't quite as portrayed in the UK: to qualify for more than three months, you need to be demonstrably self-supporting. It doesn't give you any right to, for example, just turn up and claim benefits!

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#332986

Postby Lootman » August 13th, 2020, 6:25 pm

UncleEbenezer wrote:
ursaminortaur wrote:Sorry if my answer wasn't clear - As far as I am aware as with the UK's settlement program for EU citizens the onus would be on you to prove with documentation that you were resident for the required periods.

Not an answer, but I expect the idea is that the vast majority can rely on evidence such as where they've paid taxes, been registered with local institutions, etc.

But where you paid taxes does not prove where you resided. It just proves that you had some financial activity in that country, and have an address there that you can use.

From the list that Ursa gave I could only produce two of those documents. One is a tax return, which proves nothing as above. The other thing is documentation confirming a UK address but, again, that just proves there is a location where post can be sent with my name on it.

Based on the suggestions given so far, there is no way I can prove that I am UK resident beyond a reasonable doubt. I could produce the same documents even if I was non-resident.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#332989

Postby didds » August 13th, 2020, 6:49 pm

... and if you were fully self supporting finaincially... then there would be nop taxes to pay anyway in PT.

Which brings us back to what other proof?

A rent book equaivalenet - but that only proves you paid rent on a property - doesnt mean you were there.

etc

didds

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#332990

Postby AF62 » August 13th, 2020, 6:53 pm

Lootman wrote:Based on the suggestions given so far, there is no way I can prove that I am UK resident beyond a reasonable doubt. I could produce the same documents even if I was non-resident.


There are two sides to this coin though; you proving your are a resident of a country and the country proving you were not a resident.

For the former, if you wanted to prove you were resident in a country for a period of time I can't see it would be hard IF you thought about it in advance (which is where the Windrush people have been caught out). Simply looking at the spending on my credit card would show where I had been spending money every day (I accept not proof in itself as I could have loaned the card to a friend whilst I was elsewhere), but that type of thing all taken in the round would be good proof. And for the UK since it is the CCTV capital of the world, every day I would appear on dozens of recordings in shops, banks, the High Street, driving my car, etc.

Now if I wanted to avoid a country proving I was not a resident then it would be doing the opposite. Not leaving a paper trail where I could be proved to be a liar; so cash everywhere, not taking my car out of the country so it doesn't appear on any ANPR cameras elsewhere, not staying in hotels that need a passport or ID, etc. Not easy but not impossible.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#333003

Postby Lootman » August 13th, 2020, 8:13 pm

AF62 wrote:
Lootman wrote:Based on the suggestions given so far, there is no way I can prove that I am UK resident beyond a reasonable doubt. I could produce the same documents even if I was non-resident.

There are two sides to this coin though; you proving your are a resident of a country and the country proving you were not a resident.

For the former, if you wanted to prove you were resident in a country for a period of time I can't see it would be hard IF you thought about it in advance (which is where the Windrush people have been caught out). Simply looking at the spending on my credit card would show where I had been spending money every day (I accept not proof in itself as I could have loaned the card to a friend whilst I was elsewhere), but that type of thing all taken in the round would be good proof. And for the UK since it is the CCTV capital of the world, every day I would appear on dozens of recordings in shops, banks, the High Street, driving my car, etc.

Yes, I had thought about credit cards although, as you note, you might have loaned or given your card to someone else. In fact I have done that in the past.

Likewise your mobile phone records should provide a record of where you were, or at least where your phone was. The problem with that is that it hard for an individual to get that data; rather easier for the authorities. And again someone else might have your phone - i have two and one of them is not registered in my name.

CCTV images are also hard to get as an individual.

Funnily enough I have had no problem opening a new financial account. Their AML procedures and "know your customer" rules are satisfied fairly easily with passports, driving licenses and tax returns. They are more interested in who you are rather than where you are. Where I had the biggest problem so far was getting my senior bus pass, as my council was more interested in ensuring that I lived in their jurisdiction and I found that qute hard to do.

AF62 wrote:Now if I wanted to avoid a country proving I was not a resident then it would be doing the opposite. Not leaving a paper trail where I could be proved to be a liar; so cash everywhere, not taking my car out of the country so it doesn't appear on any ANPR cameras elsewhere, not staying in hotels that need a passport or ID, etc. Not easy but not impossible.

I believe that a history of your movements would be possible to get from passport data, given that your passport is checked every time you leave or enter the UK. The OP's point was more about within Schengen where there are no passport checks.

But even then, what about people with two passports, like my wife? If she wanted to she could be judicious about which passport she uses to create a false image of where she was.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#333074

Postby AF62 » August 14th, 2020, 7:54 am

Lootman wrote:
AF62 wrote:Now if I wanted to avoid a country proving I was not a resident then it would be doing the opposite. Not leaving a paper trail where I could be proved to be a liar; so cash everywhere, not taking my car out of the country so it doesn't appear on any ANPR cameras elsewhere, not staying in hotels that need a passport or ID, etc. Not easy but not impossible.

I believe that a history of your movements would be possible to get from passport data, given that your passport is checked every time you leave or enter the UK. The OP's point was more about within Schengen where there are no passport checks.


My experience is your passport is only checked when you enter the UK, and although the Advance Passenger Information for flights could fill that gap, then leaving on a ferry would seem to mean you could exit without being seen (although you would have to risk the Calais, etc. officials not being very thorough - but then they never have been when I have passed through).

Lootman wrote:But even then, what about people with two passports, like my wife? If she wanted to she could be judicious about which passport she uses to create a false image of where she was.


Do governments link up the data for multiple passport holders, so if you fly out of the UK and enter France with an Irish passport but then use a UK passport to return, then do they 'join the dots' - I would guess not regularly unless you were of interest to them. But if you were I cannot imagine it would be hard for them to do.

And that comes back to the leaving a paper trail that proved you to be a liar about leaving a country when you were not permitted to for residency.

Use any official document, drive any registered car, pay on any card in your name, etc. and although it wouldn't be easy for the authorities to find it, it lurks there waiting to be found if you have irked them enough - Jonathan Aitken and the Ritz hotel bill springs to mind. And then you are on the defensive needing to argue that you had used your other passport, loaned your car and your credit card to a friend, etc. against the authorities with all the time and resources they need to prove you wrong.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#333190

Postby Lootman » August 14th, 2020, 1:44 pm

AF62 wrote:
Lootman wrote:But even then, what about people with two passports, like my wife? If she wanted to she could be judicious about which passport she uses to create a false image of where she was.

Do governments link up the data for multiple passport holders, so if you fly out of the UK and enter France with an Irish passport but then use a UK passport to return, then do they 'join the dots' - I would guess not regularly unless you were of interest to them. But if you were I cannot imagine it would be hard for them to do.

The simple answer is that governments do not link up the data for multiple passport owners because a government does not have any way of knowing which other passports you have. So as an example neither of the two countries that my wife has a passport from know about the other passport. There is no process in applying for those passports that notifies another government. There is no requirement to declare another passport (at least in the countries she is likely to visit). And since only one passport is used at a time no airport checks reveal the existence of the passport not being used.

Now, there are some restrictions. The US requires that my wife use only her US passport to enter the US. The UK prefers you to use your UK passport when entering the UK.

Then there are some common sense rules. When my wife goes to Israel she uses a different passport from the one she would use to visit an Arab state. She would use a non-US passport to enter Cuba or, if she ever went, somewhere like Iran. She also has no problem entering the UK on one passport and leaving on another.

Where there are checks, I believe, is entering and leaving the Schengen area. I have been told that you should leave Schengen on the same passport that you entered it with. Otherwise they may infer that you didn't leave within the timespan specified (say, 6 months). This can cause some odd behaviours. Say you enter Schengen on a EU passport. Then you might check in to your return flight from Paris to New York with a US passport, then show your EU passport at the Schengen checkpoint, then use the US passport to board the plane and when arriving in the US.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#333217

Postby servodude » August 14th, 2020, 3:19 pm

Lootman wrote:The simple answer is that governments do not link up the data for multiple passport owners because a government does not have any way of knowing which other passports you have


They don't know you've got the passport but normally citizenship is required for a passport, which is a bit of a close proxy, and a bit more visible (at least in one direction)
Granted you get your first citizenship for free; but each subsequent application I've seen has required you to declare your others. Sometimes your existing country require you to relinquish citizenship if you take another so you need to tell that one too (or should tell them I suppose ;) )
Obviously there's not necessarily a 1:1 relationship between citizenship and having a passport, but as you point out the "home" state expects its passport to be used by its citizens where it is concerned.
This also confuses some airlines (in addition to the Schengen zone) that don't join the dots if you're travelling between the two places that you have passports for; you leave on one and arrive on the other, changing identity in mid air, so you're a surprise when you turn up for your return flight!
It's probably going to be the same on the Belfast-Stranraer ferry soon enough.

-sd

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#333266

Postby AF62 » August 14th, 2020, 6:04 pm

Lootman wrote:The simple answer is that governments do not link up the data for multiple passport owners because a government does not have any way of knowing which other passports you have.


Are you sure of that?

Lootman wrote:So as an example neither of the two countries that my wife has a passport from know about the other passport. There is no process in applying for those passports that notifies another government. There is no requirement to declare another passport (at least in the countries she is likely to visit). And since only one passport is used at a time no airport checks reveal the existence of the passport not being used.


Now all that may be true, but that doesn't mean that behind the scenes the UK is not exchanging data with other countries for the prevention of crime and then doing a cross match.

And even without doing that then simply knowing that someone has for example dual nationality, would mean that they are quite likely to have two passports.

Then there is the API when you fly.

Lootman wrote:Now, there are some restrictions. The US requires that my wife use only her US passport to enter the US. The UK prefers you to use your UK passport when entering the UK.


So presumably your wife completes the API with her US passport details when she travels from the UK to the US and completes it with the UK passport details when she returns. It doesn't take Sherlock Holmes to identify that mismatch and conclude that your wife has two passports.

All I am suggesting is that there is a lot of data floating out there and you cannot be certain what the government is or is not doing with it.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#333271

Postby Lootman » August 14th, 2020, 6:28 pm

AF62 wrote:
Lootman wrote:The simple answer is that governments do not link up the data for multiple passport owners because a government does not have any way of knowing which other passports you have.

Are you sure of that?

No, I'm not 100% certain since I am not on the inside. And proving a negative is never easy. But my wife has had dual passports since 1998 and there has never been any sign that either country knows about the passport from the other.

AF62 wrote:
Lootman wrote:Now, there are some restrictions. The US requires that my wife use only her US passport to enter the US. The UK prefers you to use your UK passport when entering the UK.

So presumably your wife completes the API with her US passport details when she travels from the UK to the US and completes it with the UK passport details when she returns. It doesn't take Sherlock Holmes to identify that mismatch and conclude that your wife has two passports.

All I am suggesting is that there is a lot of data floating out there and you cannot be certain what the government is or is not doing with it.

Actually no. The personal data she uses for every flight is the same. It is automatically drawn from her profile on her airline frequent flyer account. So when she enters the UK she has flown using her US data but is admitted under her UK passport. That has not caused a problem to date and I did read somewhere that the UK is not overly picky about matching the two up (whereas the US is).

But yes, you are correct that some sleuthing would probably reveal all. If MI5 or the CIA wanted to investigate I feel sure they could pull together enough data to see the full picture. It just seems that for everyday purposes, as long as you are not doing anything that would likely lead to a serious criminal investigation, then using different passports in and out of the UK does not flag anything or cause a problem.

Whereas as noted earlier it can cause a problem if you do that in and out of Schengen, or the US.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#333322

Postby JamesMuenchen » August 14th, 2020, 11:03 pm

didds wrote:Following some idle curiositity I googled about gaining 2nd passports. The country this query is based on is Portugal but other than that is not in itself pertinent. So please lets not get wrapped up in PT specifically, and neither take this too seriously. This is mere idle speculation etc

PT's requirements are amongst other things:

During the first year of the residence permit you will be required to spend a minimum of four months in the country and can’t leave for more than 6 consecutive months at a time.

After the first year, your temporary residence permit renews in two-year intervals.

During each two year period you have to spend at least 16 months in the country and can’t can’t leave for more than 6 consecutive months.


Given PT shares a land border with ES, which shares a land border with FR and from theer the rest of mainland Europe onwards etc ... and PT is in Shengen...

How would PT ever know if you were resident or not? You could bugger off over the border and pretty much go anywhere within Schenegen particularly ... even probably coming to the UK where uoud be processed by UK Border people you probably wont end up on anything "obvious" to PT/have a passoport franked if you were most European countries at least etc etc etc. ?

Merely idle curiosity :-)

didds

In many countries everyone is required to officially register/deregister at an address. So this would be a good evidence if you follow the rules.

Of course, in practice you may choose not to deregister, but if you are renting then your landlord or the next tenant may do it for you (as happens in Germany).

Consequently, in Germany anyway, there is a small cottage industry where property owners will register people who don't live there. We have been approached to do this, but didn't fancy it.

Just checked. EU citizens are required to register after 3 months in PT, and can even do it earlier.
https://europa.eu/youreurope/citizens/r ... dex_en.htm
So pretty clear there will be some official registration process for non-EU. Still may not prevent you doing one once you're registered, I suppose.

But on that score, you would need to be careful how much they really need to prove it. It's likely they could just reject your application, and the onus is on you to prove beyond doubt that you hadn't been sneaking out.

ursaminortaur wrote:Citizenship and residency are different. Just having residency does not allow you freedom to move across EU borders

When I met my GF in Germany, she had residency for another EU country so was allowed 3 months in, 3 months out in Germany. Required to register/deregister at the Auslandersamt and stiff fines and other penalties if caught in violation. I don't know rules in other countries but at least in my experience what you say ain't so.

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#333820

Postby didds » August 17th, 2020, 11:46 am

JamesMuenchen wrote:Just checked. EU citizens are required to register after 3 months in PT, and can even do it earlier.
https://europa.eu/youreurope/citizens/r ... dex_en.htm
So pretty clear there will be some official registration process for non-EU. Still may not prevent you doing one once you're registered, I suppose.

But on that score, you would need to be careful how much they really need to prove it. It's likely they could just reject your application, and the onus is on you to prove beyond doubt that you hadn't been sneaking out..


Indeed. So you register, cross to Spain and do whatever with your life and return via Spain ie land borders within Shengen instead of being resident IN Portugal.

good call on the reverse thing - but its the same question in reverse I suppose... how do you PROVE you HAVE been resident. you've paid your rent and taxes on time or whatever. A fistful of receipts for 3 years showing youve bought bread from the local bakery and fuel from the local fuel station and newspapers from the local newsagent? Which could be anybody's receipts in reality!


didds

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Re: When is residency, residency?

#334363

Postby spasmodicus » August 19th, 2020, 11:42 am

An interesting question,which my wife and I have been pondering for some time. Although we have been married for 9 years, Mrs S, a Ukrainian citizen does not yet have permanent leave to remain in the UK, for various reasons related to the Home Office's famously hostile attitude towards all foreigners together with their staggeringly inefficient and unfair bureaucracy. In particular, she fell foul of a regulation requiring would-be permanent residents to spend at least 90 days out of every 180 in this country. However, we are not at all convinced that the Home Office itself has access to records that could prove an applicant's assertions on this topic to be true or false. They rely on their assessment of the veracity of the information provided by the applicant during the application process, which is of labyrinthine complexity. The assessment is carried out by private contractor companies hired by the Home Office to preprocess the online application forms. The procedure has changed over the years, from one in which the application was made manually to a consulate in Kiev who then passed it for processing to an Indian owned subcontractor in Warsaw. I cannot imagine that the poorly paid minions in such offices had access to the kind of records that would enable them to decide one way or another whether the information supplied by the client was accurate or not.

Another requirement for a British citizen's foreign spouse to gain citizenship is that the British side of the partnership has to prove that their income is above about £18.5k/annum, irrespective of the income or wealth of their spouse. This rule was introduced about 10 years ago as a political ploy to prevent arranged marriages being used to gain residency for citizens of commonwealth countries. One might think that in most cases NI or HMRC records could simply be used to verify such income, but instead applicants are required to provide certified bank statements that show the income arriving in their account. This is presumably because the private agencies doing the checking are not allowed access to HMRC records. The general rules about how all categories of information are presented are both complex and strict, giving plenty of scope for rejection of applications which do not follow the regulations to the letter.

We also have a property in Spain. A few years ago we decided to apply there for residency for my wife. In order to do this, I had to apply for Spanish residency first, which I could do as a European citizen, however not wanting to be subject to Spanish taxation rules, I have to make sure that I do not spend more than 180 days a year in Spain. Mrs S subsequently applied for and got Spanish residency as the wife of an EU citizen with residency. It is interesting to note that her residency card has a biometric photo ID and a definite expiry date, whereas mine does not. Will it still be valid after Dec 31st when the UK is completely out of the EU, I ask myself? This is potentially complicated further by our property being in Catalonia. Further, we were stuck in Spain earlier this year by COVID19 travel restrictions, which will have caused my wife to have been outside the UK for more than 90 days in the last 180, possibly affecting her upcoming re-application for permanent leave to remain/citizenship in the UK.

I used to be a bit paranoid about all this, but I have come to believe that, although huge amounts of detailed personal information are held by various agencies in all countries, this information is not freely exchanged between them, if at all. The reason is not as one may have hoped because of citizen's rights to data protection, but because nearly all such government agencies are stupendously bureaucratic and obstructive and control the access to the data they hold as a way of preserving the staus quo and their own jobs and power. Imagine the fun to be had if Scotland gains its independence!

regards,
S


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