One of the more surprising features of the 2002 Act was its precipitate arrival.
Only three years earlier, the lengthy and cumbersome Immigration and Asylum
Act 1999 had come into law after extensive discussion and debate.
Act’s overhaul of UK legislation, the Government published a White Paper in
February 2002 entitled Secure Borders, Safe Haven ^ Integration with Diversity in Mod-
ern Br itain.
This laid out yet further changes to UK immigration and asylum law
and o¡ered, accordingto Home SecretaryBlunkett, a holistic approachto nation-
ality, managed immigration and asylum.
The White Paper considered a broad
range of important issues: citizenship and nationality, working in the UK, asy-
lum, people tra⁄cking, illegal entry and illegal working, border controls, mar-
riage and family visits, and war criminals.
The subsequent Bill and ¢nal version of the 2002 Act incorporated the major-
ity of theWhite Paper proposals and re£ected the high pro¢le given to asylum
and immigration during the 1990s.
Whereas the ¢rst asylum-speci¢c statute
passed in 1993, the Asylumand Immigration Appeals Act, containedonly 16 short
sections and two schedules, the 2002 Act extended to164 sections and nine sche-
dules. There are eight Parts: 1 (Nationality),
2 (Accommodation Centres), 3
(Other Support and Assistance), 4 (Detention and Removal), 5 (Immigration
and Asylum Appeals), 6 (Immigration Procedure), 7 (O¡ences) and 8 (General).
Many provisions are dependent on secondary legislation for their further clari¢-
cation and implementation. At the time of writing, in March 2004, six com-
mencement orders have been published, bringing numerous sections into force,
though many remain outstanding.
This reviewwill address the following areas: thesupport o f asylum seekers, the
regulation of asylum seekers, and appeals.
5 Se e D. Stevens, ‘The Immigration and Asylum Act 1999: A missed opportunity?’ (2001) 64:3
ML R 413.
7 HC Deb vol 379 col1027 7 February 2002.
8 For discussion of the developments in asylum law in the UK, see D.Stevens, UK Asylum Law &
Policy:Historical an d ContemporaryPerspectives (London: Sweet & Maxwell, 2004);P.Shah, Refugees,
Racea ndthe L egalConcept of Asylum in Britain (London: Cavendish, 2000); C. Harvey, SeekingAsy-
lum in the UK (London: Butterworths,20 00).See for the practitioner’s viewpoint M. Symesa ndP.
Jorro,Asylum Law & Practice(London: LexisNexis/Butterworths, 2003).
9 For a discussion of changes to nationality law see R. Shah,‘Being British: rites of passage’(2003)
17:4 IANL, 250^254.
, Immigration and AsylumAct 2002 (Commencement No.1)Order SI 2002/2811
, Immigration and Asylum A
ct 2002 (Commencement No. 2) Or
der SI 2003/1
, Immigration and AsylumAct 2002 (Commencement No.3) Order SI 2003/249
The Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 20 02 (Commencement No. 4)(Amendment of
Transitional Provisions) Order SI 2003/1040; The Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act
2002 (Commencement No. 4)(Amendment)(No. 2) Order SI 2003/1339;The Nationality, Immi-
gration and AsylumAct 2002 (Commencement No.4)(Amendment)(No.3) Order SI 2003/2993
The Nationality, Immigrationa ndAsylum Act 2002 (Commencement No.4) Order SI 2003/754;
The Nationality, Immigrationa ndAsylum Act 2002 (Commencement No.5) Order SI 2003/1747;
Nationality, Immigration and AsylumAct 2002 (Commencement No.6) Order SI 2003/3156.
617rThe Modern LawReview Limited 2004