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Scotland Act 1998

Section B6: Immigration and Nationality
Purpose and Effect

This Section reserves immigration and nationality.


Immigration and nationality covers a range of matters, including: entry to the UK; the granting of political or other forms of asylum; the status and capacity in the UK of non-British citizens, the grant of work permits and their regulation; free movement of persons within the European Economic Area; and the issue of passports and other travel documents.

Immigration control is now largely a matter of statute, the principal controlling statute being the Immigration Act 1971 (which has been amended by a number of subsequent Immigration Acts) together with the British Nationality Act 1981 and the Immigration (Carriers’ Liability) Act 1987.  Passports and other travel documents are not subject to statutory provision, but are issued under the Royal Prerogative.

Parliamentary Consideration
Details of Provisions

The reservation includes the exercise of functions under the legislation described above; asylum and the status and capacity of persons in the United Kingdom who are not British citizens; free movement of persons within the European Economic Area; and the issue of travel documents.

Executive Devolution

The following functions have been included in the Scotland Act 1998 (Transfer of Functions to the Scottish Ministers etc.) Order 1999 (S.I. 1999/1750).

The Immigration Act 1971 (c.77):


Schedule 2, paragraph 1(2); and

The function conferred on the Secretary of State to appoint medical inspectors for the purposes of that Act.


Schedule 2, paragraph 1(3).

The function of the Secretary of State to give instructions to medical inspectors in relation to their functions under the Act.

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