The Court of Appeal has granted permission to appeal against the decision of the Upper Tribunal in Celik (EU exit; marriage; human rights) [2022] UKUT 00220 (IAC).

The Appellant in Celik is one of a very large number of individuals who, due to the Covid-19 pandemic and restrictions, was unable to marry his EU citizen partner prior to the end of the Brexit transition period on 31 December 2020. He was thus refused leave to remain under the EU Settlement Scheme (Appendix EU of the Immigration Rules), and his appeal was dismissed by the First-tier Tribunal.

The Appellant’s appeal to the Upper Tribunal was heard by a panel (Lane J, then President; UTJ Hanson; UTJ McWilliam), but dismissed on 19 July 2002, the panel holding that:

(1) A person (P) in a durable relationship in the United Kingdom with an EU citizen has as such no substantive rights under the EU Withdrawal Agreement, unless P’s entry and residence were being facilitated before 11pm GMT on 31 December 2020 or P had applied for such facilitation before that time.

 (2) Where P has no such substantive right, P cannot invoke the concept of proportionality in Article 18.1(r) of the Withdrawal Agreement or the principle of fairness, in order to succeed in an appeal under the Immigration (Citizens’ Rights) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020 (“the 2020 Regulations”). That includes the situation where it is likely that P would have been able to secure a date to marry the EU citizen before the time mentioned in paragraph (1) above, but for the Covid-19 pandemic.

(3) Regulation 9(4) of the 2020 Regulations confers a power on the First-tier Tribunal to consider a human rights ground of appeal, subject to the prohibition imposed by regulation 9(5) upon the Tribunal considering a new matter without the consent of the Secretary of State.

However, the Court of Appeal has now granted permission to appeal on all grounds.

The Appellant is represented by Benjamin Hawkin.

There is also an indication that a third party intervener is seeking to intervene.

For those seeking a stay of their appeal in the Upper Tribunal, the Court is expected to hear Celik as soon as possible after Easter