I have been found at port in the UK, what are my options?



Without a passport or legitimate travel documents, your only option is to claim asylum. It will be in your favour to claim asylum as soon as possible. 


When you arrive at the port, make yourself known to a worker there. If you are in the back of a lorry, and you want to claim at the port, the safest thing to do is call the police. Explain to a worker that you need to claim asylum. You have a right to do this. You will then have an asylum screening interview at the port with an immigration officer. The interview can take up to four hours. 


Try to stay calm, don’t raise your voice and be polite to the staff.  Everything you are doing is legal.


The Home Office interviewer will take notes on a screening interview form during the interview. It is very important that you get a copy of this screening interview record.


Right to Remain have good advice page on what the screening interview will entail, https://righttoremain.org.uk/toolkit/screening/ it is available in a variety of languages. It is important to keep your story consistent between this screening interview and further discussions with the Home Office. 


Your request to claim asylum may be rejected at the port if:


- You have previously been deported/forcibly removed from the UK

- You have an NHS debt exceeding £500

- An immigration officer feels you have not supplied sufficient reasoning to support your right to leave to enter 


Appealing a rejection of entry 


KNOW YOUR RIGHTS: Don’t be hesitant to claim asylum if you have used a false passport. Article 31 of the Refugee Convention acknowledges the need for people to use a false identification in order to leave their country of origin.   This is especially important for people to remember who arrive to the UK via an airport.  



Migrant Help is a good number to keep handy. They can be of assistance to you in the UK. 


Migrant Help: 0808 8000 630 / ah@migranthelpuk.org 


Let any friend, family member or Refugee Info Bus Facebook page know that you are about to arrive in the UK and that you have arrived. If you are then at risk of detention, they will know of your rough whereabouts and if they do not hear you for 48 hours are more likely to be able to raise an alarm and try to get legal assistance for you.


Good luck, we send you strength and good wishes, and we hope you find the safety and security that you deserve.

This page is run by the UK registered charity, Refugee Info Bus - for more info on our work, check out our website. 

PO BOX:  Po Box 28652, Edinburgh, EH4 9EX

Registered UK Charity Number: 1168538

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