The applicants were students from Mauritius who entered the State on student permissions in 2008 which were renewed for over four years but then expired and the applicants thereafter remained in the State without permission. The Minister made deportation orders against them which rejected their assertions that they had acquired private life rights in the State by reason of their four years of lawful residence. The Minister’s position was that the applicants permissions to remain in the State were only ever temporary and could not give rise to private life rights as they were not settled migrants. The applicants challenged the Minister’s decision to make deportation orders against them.
Humphreys J. in Rughoonauth v Minister for Justice and Equality (No.2)  IEHC 241 disagreed with the decision of O’Regan J. in WS that a student should be regarded as a settled migrant for the period in respect of which that permission was held. Humphreys J. held that a distinction must be drawn between persons present in the State unlawfully and persons present in the State on a precarious basis. Humphreys J. held that students fell into the latter category, and that it was only in exceptional circumstances that art.8 would be violated by the deportation of a person who does not have both a lawful and a settled immigration status. Accordingly, it was held that there were no substantial grounds to seek to quash the deportation orders in this case because each applicant had been in the State either unlawfully or on time-limited student permissions and it was therefore clearly open to the Minister to hold that the consequences of each applicant’s removal were not of such gravity as to require a proportionality assessment under art.8(2).
The decision in Rughoonauth is under appeal.