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Immigration Exemption and the European Convention on Human Rights

DOI https://doi.org/10.21552/edpl/2019/1/7

Matthew White


The European Union has introduced the General Data Protection Regulation to reform and update data protection laws across Member States. To comply, the United Kingdom has introduced the Data Protection Act 2018. This article focuses on one schedule of the new Act, a data protection exemption for effective immigration control purposes. Considering that the UK Parliament has not implemented the Charter of Fundamental Rights into domestic law post-Brexit, it is therefore necessary to consider this exemption under the European Convention on Human Rights. Recital 73 of the Regulation requires any restrictions on the protection of personal data to be compatible with the Convention. In concluding that the exemption is incompatible with the Convention, this will highlight that not only would the UK be failing their existing human rights obligations but also raises concerns about the UK’s adequacy status as a third country post-Brexit.
Keywords: Immigration, Exemptions, Article 8 ECHR, Effective Remedy, Discrimination

Matthew White, PhD Candidate, Sheffield Hallam University. For correspondence: <mailto:the_m_white@outlook.com>.

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