Man born in Britain to EU expat parents refused British passport

Published:  6 Jan at 6 PM
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A 32-year old man born to German parents living in London has been refused a British passport and will have to take a UK citizenship test in order to stay. Given recent media revelations about Home Office chaos over EU citizens’ permanent residency applications, the present plight of Dom Wolf perhaps should not come as a surprise, even although the Passport Office is the culprit.

Wolf’s parents arrived in the UK in 1974, and his mother worked as a lecturer at the University of London. His father was self-employed, and the family have lived permanently in the UK to the present day. To remind him of his German heritage, Wolf’s father got his son a EU German passport and, as EU citizens, the family didn't need to carry UK passports as well.

However, once the result of the Brexit referendum was announced, Wolf decided it would be best to apply for a British passport. As he’d been born in the UK and had his birth certificate as proof, he expected the process would be straightforward.

However, the reply from the Passport Office was anything but straightforward, as he was told his birth certificate was insufficient evidence of his entitlement. His mother’s tax and employment records were demanded in order to prove she was in the UK legally, even although his parents were EU citizens and entitled to free movement.

The letter made it clear that, should he not be able to provide the records demanded, he must take a UK citizenship test in order to be allowed to stay. By now, Wolf was feeling betrayed by the country of his birth, especially when his mother found out London University did not keep employee records from before 1982. Her request to HMRC for proof of tax and National Insurance contributions was met with the same story.

As a result, Wolf was told he would be regarded as an immigrant applying for naturalisation. In desperation, he wrote to Theresa May outlining his situation and the fact that he is faced with a £1,121 bill for proving he can speak English, is aware of the Queen and can sing a song in the local lingo. He’s saddled with a £30,000 student loan, works and pays tax, but is now considering becoming an expat and finding another country in which to pay his dues. As yet, no reply has been received from the PM.

Source – The Guardian
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