BRIAN PAGE, a 41-year-old man from North Carolina and his 36-year-old English husband Ben face having their family torn apart just in time for Christmas. The couple of nearly 7 years live in Milton Keynes and were married in New York in June 2014 before moving to England to provide support to Ben’s terminally ill mother.
Ben’s mother lost her battle with cancer in 2016 and shortly after, Ben’s father was subsequently diagnosed with lung cancer in 2017. The couple provide emotional and practical support to Ben’s father while he undergoes a range of treatments including radiotherapy and a course of chemotherapy which is planned for the new year.
Brian and Ben envisaged a very different life together and after Ben’s mother passed away and his father was diagnosed with lung cancer, they hoped to make the UK their home before adopting a child and completing their family. The Home Office claim that having entered the UK as a visitor, Brian cannot expect to remain and settle in the UK despite his being married to a British citizen and their having laid down shared roots in Milton Keynes. The government have said the couple could move to a third country such as Canada despite neither having any connections there or any rights of abode. Brian returning to the US to apply for the necessary paperwork would involve significant further costs and could take up to two years.
The couple have a final appeal at the Upper Tribunal in December. Just days after Brian’s 42nd birthday, the couple will face the Home Office again and due to the £16,000 already spent in legal fees, the couple face the prospect of representing themselves again.
Rob McDowall a human rights advocate and member of the Equality Council shared his scathing criticism of the Home Office in this case.