Big Changes To The Law On Foreigners In Store

Published June 29, 2012

The Ministry of the Interior will be making sweeping changes to the law on foreigners, pertaining to both immigrants and refugees alike.
Halla Gunnarsdóttir, the chairperson of the committee which put together the bill and the assistant to Minister of the Interior Ögmundur Jónasson, announced the bill formally yesterday, the ministry reports. It is expected to be submitted to parliament this fall.
Some of the proposed changes to the law focused on practical matters. For example, if the bill should pass, a single law on foreigners will be under the administration of the Ministry of the Interior. As it is now, work permits are administered by the Ministry of Welfare, while the Ministry of the Interior takes care of residence permits.
However, other changes make advances that could come as a relief to many foreigners in Iceland. Those who receive residence permits, for example, will receive a work permit automatically. Top priority will also be given to allowing foreigners in Iceland to bring their families to live with them.
Greater changes have also been proposed with regard to asylum seekers. Should the bill pass, coming to Iceland with falsified papers will no longer be a criminally punishable offence. The first interview for seeking asylum will be conducted at the Directorate of Immigration; not at the police station, as is the case now. Also, refugees will be allowed to decide where in Iceland they will live, without it affecting what level of service they receive. The bill proposes furthermore that child refugees be given special treatment.
The committee report in its entirety can be read here (.pdf file).



News
Afghan Family Who Fled Taliban To Be Deported

Afghan Family Who Fled Taliban To Be Deported

by

A family of seven, who fled persecution from the Taliban for a better life in Iceland, will be deported to

News
Election 2016: Pirate Party Receives Mandate To Form Coalition Government

Election 2016: Pirate Party Receives Mandate To Form Coalition Government

by

President Guðni Th. Jóhannesson announced just moments ago that he gave Pirate Party captain Birgitta Jónsdóttir the mandate to form

News
Sushi Samba Cannot Call Itself Sushi Samba Anymore

Sushi Samba Cannot Call Itself Sushi Samba Anymore

by

The Supreme Court has ruled that the Icelandic restaurant Sushi Samba can no longer use this name, as the owners

News
Refugees & Asylum Seekers To March On Parliament Tomorrow

Refugees & Asylum Seekers To March On Parliament Tomorrow

by

Refugees and asylum seekers alike will converge on Parliament tomorrow afternoon to convey three demands: the right to work, the

News
Reykjavík Will Close Some Streets To Car Traffic For The Holidays

Reykjavík Will Close Some Streets To Car Traffic For The Holidays

by

In order to make downtown Reykjavík a more pleasant experience this holiday season, the city will be closing parts of

News
Election 2016: 5-Party Coalition Back On The Table

Election 2016: 5-Party Coalition Back On The Table

by

Talks between the Independence Party and the Left-Greens broke down today, with the latter now entering talks with the Pirate

Show Me More!