What is Section 95 Asylum Support?
The Immigration and Asylum Act (1999) provides housing and financial support to asylum seekers and is split into three. The main part is Section 95 which is for asylum seekers who need some support whilst they are awaiting a decision on their case by the Home Office.
Once approved, applicants will usually be taken to available accommodation elsewhere in the UK so that the provision of asylum support is spread out proportionally across all local councils. Because of this, you will not have a say as to where in the country you are placed.
As well as housing, Section 95 support also includes a £47.39 allowance per week in a self-catered accommodation or £9.58 per week in a catered accommodation.
This will be paid through what is called an ‘Aspen Card’ which functions the same as a debit card. This will be monitored by the government to make sure you are staying where your accommodation is based and it can be cancelled at any time, should it be necessary.
If you already have accommodation organised then you can apply for a ‘subsistence-only’ version of the support where you will receive financial assistance but not accommodation. However, only a small percentage of Asylum Support applications are for subsistence-only assistance.
Another key piece of support included with Section 95 is that your children will go to a free state school and you may get free healthcare from the National Health Service.
In order to qualify for this support, you must be considered ‘destitute’ which means that you are unable to provide for yourself. One of the following situations must also apply to you:
- Your ill health prevents you from leaving the UK
- The Home Office agrees that there is ‘no viable route of return’ to your country
- You are taking all reasonable steps to leave the UK but there are uncontrollable barriers in your way
- You have been granted permission to appeal the decision of your asylum claim
- The provision of Section 4 support is necessary
It is important to note that, because it is intended to provide Asylum Seekers with immediate assistance, people can apply for Section 95 Asylum support before their asylum screening interview takes place.
All The Benefits You Can Expect to Get From the Government
Although Section 95 support covers most asylum seekers, there are two other parts to the Act which also require the applicant to be classed as ‘destitute’.
Section 98 temporarily supports asylum seekers who have already applied for Section 95 but require immediate help in the meantime. It usually includes full boarding at a Home Office hostel or hotel. This support will stop as and when you start receiving your Section 95 support or if you receive a decision on your asylum claim from the Home Office.
Section 4 is the third and final part of the act and it provides some support for individuals whose asylum claims have been rejected and who have no option to appeal. Similar to Section 95, it involves accommodation and financial support using an Aspen card.
There is also a separate type of support that falls under the Children Act 1989 called Section 17 support. This is in place to help if you have a serious illness, physical or learning disability, mental health problems, difficulties due to old age, or if somebody else in your family qualifies for any of these. Where Sections 95, 98, and 4 are provisioned by the national government, Section 17 is instead organised by the social services department in your local government.
It is a long and complicated process to claim asylum in the UK. Because it is an overwhelming amount of information to take in, we have designed our services to make the process a lot easier. In total, we have had over 5,000 applications approved and we have offices in seven major cities across England and Scotland.
Our experienced immigration lawyers here at Birmingham Immigration Lawyers can take you through Asylum support applications to increase your chances of getting a positive outcome. If you have any other issues relating to asylum, such as applying for asylum, appealing decisions, and applying for family reunions or appealing family reunion decisions, then we can help with those processes too.
We can also assist you with any other immigration-related issues you might be having. For example, we represent clients with bail renewal cases, bail tribunals, and secrtetary of state applications to make sure they are getting the correct treatment. Additional areas we specialise in are travel documents and permission to work applications because these are vital but complicated documents that must be fully understood.
Given the importance of claiming asylum, we recommend that you get some assistance from our leading team of lawyers by getting in touch online or calling our office at 0121 667 6530 to talk through your situation and discover the opportunities that lay ahead.
Last modified on October 20th, 2023 at 10:25 am
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You can apply for asylum support by using an ASF1 form and sending this to the asylum support casework team to claim housing and cash support.
If you require financial support for other family members, then there is an additional payment per week of: £3 for a pregnant mother, £5 for babies under 1 year old, and £3 for children aged 1 to 3
Your Section 95 Asylum Support will stop when the youngest child of the house turns 18 or when the Home Office decides that the family is no longer deemed to be ‘destitute’.