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Skenäktenskap i teori och praktik. Ett undantag från rätten till familjeåterförening

Månsson, Johan LU (2013) JURM02 20132
Department of Law
Abstract (Swedish)
Sedan EU-direktivet om rätt till familjeåterförening införlivades i svensk rätt har makar rätt till familjeåterförening i Sverige. Denna rättighet är dock inte absolut, utan bortfaller om äktenskapet med lagtextens ord ingåtts uteslutande för att den ena maken ska få rätt till uppehållstillstånd (s.k. skenäktenskap). Till stöd för bedömningen av vad som är ett skenäktenskap finns kriterier i en EU-resolution och i svenska propositioner, t.ex. att förhållandet ska ha varat en tid och att makarna förväntas ha kännedom om varandras personliga förhållanden. Det finns dock ingen uttömmande lista över de kriterier som får användas vid bedömningen, vilket kan antas inverka menligt på förutsebarheten till den enskildes nackdel. I en proposition... (More)
Sedan EU-direktivet om rätt till familjeåterförening införlivades i svensk rätt har makar rätt till familjeåterförening i Sverige. Denna rättighet är dock inte absolut, utan bortfaller om äktenskapet med lagtextens ord ingåtts uteslutande för att den ena maken ska få rätt till uppehållstillstånd (s.k. skenäktenskap). Till stöd för bedömningen av vad som är ett skenäktenskap finns kriterier i en EU-resolution och i svenska propositioner, t.ex. att förhållandet ska ha varat en tid och att makarna förväntas ha kännedom om varandras personliga förhållanden. Det finns dock ingen uttömmande lista över de kriterier som får användas vid bedömningen, vilket kan antas inverka menligt på förutsebarheten till den enskildes nackdel. I en proposition anges att de kriterier som listas i källorna ovan är objektiva.

Uppsatsen har tre delsyften, varav det första är att undersöka gällande svensk rätt: Vilket är lagtextens förhållande till skenäktenskapskriterierna? Är kriterierna objektiva, i betydelsen värderingsfria? Om de inte är det, vilka värderingar kan då antas ligga bakom dem? Det andra delsyftet är att undersöka skenäktenskapsbedömningen i praktiken (vilket i denna uppsats främst innebär beslut och domar från Migrationsverket och migrationsdomstolen i Malmö): Vilka kriterier används vid bedömningen, såväl av de kriterier som finns listade i ovan nämnda källor som de som inte återfinns där (”nya” kriterier)? Hur används kriterierna? Leder den icke-uttömmande listan över kriterier till godtycklig bedömning? Om de nya kriterierna inte är värderingsfria, vilka värderingar kan antas ligga bakom dem? Analysen av värderingarna sker till viss del med hjälp av sociologiska teorier om parförhållanden, t.ex. Anthony Giddens ”rena relation”. Uppsatsens tredje delsyfte är att undersöka alternativ till skenäktenskapsreglernas nuvarande utformning.

En analys av gällande rätt angående skenäktenskap ger vid handen att lagtexten tolkas subjektivteleologiskt: skenäktenskapskriterierna ges i praktiken företräde framför lagtextens ordalydelse. Inga kriterier för att bedöma skenäktenskap, varken de som finns listade eller de som författas vid tillämpningen, kan vara fria från värderingar, eftersom begreppet ”skenäktenskap” bygger på värderingar. De listade skenäktenskapskriterierna har dock den egenskapen att de i stort behandlar relationens yttre egenskaper och inte den ”inre kärnan” (t.ex. gemensamma värderingar mellan makarna).

Det kriterium som tillämpades mest i det undersökta materialet var det som anger att makarna ska lämna samstämmiga uppgifter om varandras personliga förhållanden m.m. Detta kriterium stämmer ihop med vissa sociologiska teorier om parrelationer, men det riskerar att missgynna vissa grupper av personer. Även många nya, icke-listade kriterier användes vid bedömningen. Värderingarna bakom de nya kriterier som tillämpades av migrationsdomstolen tycks i allmänhet ha mer gemensamt med värderingarna bakom de listade kriterierna och de övriga avslagsgrunderna inom familjeåterförening, än de nya kriterier som tillämpades endast av Migrationsverket. I det undersökta materialet finns det inga exempel som tydligt visar att relevant lika fall behandlats olika i samma instans. Dock finns det några exempel på att en och samma omständighet tillmätts helt olika betydelse av Migrationsverket och migrationsdomstolen.

I uppsatsen föreslås två alternativ till den nuvarande ordningen: lagtolkning i enlighet med lagens ordalydelse eller lagtolkning med hjälp av något ändrade skenäktenskapskriterier. Det senare alternativet bedöms ha flest fördelar. (Less)
Abstract
Since the incorporation in Swedish law of the EU directive on family reunification, spouses have a right to family reunification. This right, however, is subject to limitations, e.g. for marriages which were contracted for the sole purpose of enabling the person concerned to obtain a residence permit (“marriages of convenience”). Criteria in aid of assessing which marriages are marriages of convenience can be found in an EU resolution on the subject as well as in Swedish travaux préparatoires, e.g., the relationship must have endured a certain amount of time, and the spouses must be consistent about their respective personal details. The lists of critera, however, are non-exhaustive. This may affect negatively the foreseeability of the... (More)
Since the incorporation in Swedish law of the EU directive on family reunification, spouses have a right to family reunification. This right, however, is subject to limitations, e.g. for marriages which were contracted for the sole purpose of enabling the person concerned to obtain a residence permit (“marriages of convenience”). Criteria in aid of assessing which marriages are marriages of convenience can be found in an EU resolution on the subject as well as in Swedish travaux préparatoires, e.g., the relationship must have endured a certain amount of time, and the spouses must be consistent about their respective personal details. The lists of critera, however, are non-exhaustive. This may affect negatively the foreseeability of the decisions, to the disadvantage of the applicants. In one of the travaux préparatoires, the criteria are claimed to be objective.

This thesis has three main purposes, the first of which is to examine the Swedish law and its practice concerning marriages of convenience: What is the relation between the text of the statute and the criteria for assessing marriages of convenience? Are these criteria objective, meaning “free from values”? If they are not, what values can be assumed to have inspired them? The second main purpose is to examine the assessment of marriages in practice, that is, at the Swedish Migration Board (Migrationsverket) and the Migration Court in Malmö (migrationsdomstolen): What criteria are used in the assessment, as well of the criteria in the sources mentioned above as the criteria which are not mentioned in those sources (“new” criteria)? How are these criteria interpreted and used? Are there signs of arbitrary decisions, given the non-exhaustive character of the lists of criteria? If the “new” criteria are not free from values, what values could have inspired them? In analyzing the criteria, this thesis makes use of sociological theories on partner relationships, such as Anthony Giddens’s “pure relationship.” The third main purpose of the thesis is to examine alternative ways to model the assessment of suspected marriages of convenience.

The analysis of the law in practice shows that the text of the statute is interpreted in a way suited to its purpose as shown in the travaux préparatoires: the criteria for assessing marriages of convenience are given dominance over the wording of the statute. No criteria for assessing marriages of convenience could be objective, since the term “marriage of convenience” is a subjective judgment. One quality, however, of the criteria listed in the sources mentioned above, is that they mainly concern exterior aspects, not the “inner core” of the relationship (e.g., values shared by the spouses).

The one criterion which was applied most often in the investigated decisions and judgments was the criterion demanding consistent information regarding personal information of the spouses. This criterion harmonizes well with certain sociological theories on partner relationships, but may cause unfair treatment of certain categories of people. Many “new” criteria were used in the assessments. The values behind the new criteria applied by the Migration Court seem to harmonize better with the values behind the listed criteria and other grounds of rejection in family reunification, than do those new criteria applied solely by the Migration Board. There is no evidence in the material of this thesis that relevantly similar cases have been treated differently in the same instance. There are, however, a few examples of circumstances being awarded significantly different weight by the Migration Board and the Migration Court.

Two alternative ways to design the assessment of marriages of convenience are proposed in this thesis: interpretation of the law in accordance with its wording, or interpretation of the law with the aid of somewhat modified criteria for the assessment of marriages of convenience. The latter alternative is found to have more advantages than the former. (Less)
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author
Månsson, Johan LU
supervisor
organization
alternative title
Marriages of convenience in theory and in practice. An exception from the right to family reunification
course
JURM02 20132
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Folkrätt, EU-rätt, förvaltningsrätt, migrationsrätt, mänskliga rättigheter, uppehållstillstånd på grund av anknytning, familjeåterförening, skenäktenskap, public international law, EU law, administrative law, migration law, human rights law, family reunification, marriages of convenience
language
Swedish
id
4231045
date added to LUP
2014-01-23 08:15:23
date last changed
2014-01-23 08:15:23
@misc{4231045,
  abstract     = {Since the incorporation in Swedish law of the EU directive on family reunification, spouses have a right to family reunification. This right, however, is subject to limitations, e.g. for marriages which were contracted for the sole purpose of enabling the person concerned to obtain a residence permit (“marriages of convenience”). Criteria in aid of assessing which marriages are marriages of convenience can be found in an EU resolution on the subject as well as in Swedish travaux préparatoires, e.g., the relationship must have endured a certain amount of time, and the spouses must be consistent about their respective personal details. The lists of critera, however, are non-exhaustive. This may affect negatively the foreseeability of the decisions, to the disadvantage of the applicants. In one of the travaux préparatoires, the criteria are claimed to be objective.

This thesis has three main purposes, the first of which is to examine the Swedish law and its practice concerning marriages of convenience: What is the relation between the text of the statute and the criteria for assessing marriages of convenience? Are these criteria objective, meaning “free from values”? If they are not, what values can be assumed to have inspired them? The second main purpose is to examine the assessment of marriages in practice, that is, at the Swedish Migration Board (Migrationsverket) and the Migration Court in Malmö (migrationsdomstolen): What criteria are used in the assessment, as well of the criteria in the sources mentioned above as the criteria which are not mentioned in those sources (“new” criteria)? How are these criteria interpreted and used? Are there signs of arbitrary decisions, given the non-exhaustive character of the lists of criteria? If the “new” criteria are not free from values, what values could have inspired them? In analyzing the criteria, this thesis makes use of sociological theories on partner relationships, such as Anthony Giddens’s “pure relationship.” The third main purpose of the thesis is to examine alternative ways to model the assessment of suspected marriages of convenience. 

The analysis of the law in practice shows that the text of the statute is interpreted in a way suited to its purpose as shown in the travaux préparatoires: the criteria for assessing marriages of convenience are given dominance over the wording of the statute. No criteria for assessing marriages of convenience could be objective, since the term “marriage of convenience” is a subjective judgment. One quality, however, of the criteria listed in the sources mentioned above, is that they mainly concern exterior aspects, not the “inner core” of the relationship (e.g., values shared by the spouses).

The one criterion which was applied most often in the investigated decisions and judgments was the criterion demanding consistent information regarding personal information of the spouses. This criterion harmonizes well with certain sociological theories on partner relationships, but may cause unfair treatment of certain categories of people. Many “new” criteria were used in the assessments. The values behind the new criteria applied by the Migration Court seem to harmonize better with the values behind the listed criteria and other grounds of rejection in family reunification, than do those new criteria applied solely by the Migration Board. There is no evidence in the material of this thesis that relevantly similar cases have been treated differently in the same instance. There are, however, a few examples of circumstances being awarded significantly different weight by the Migration Board and the Migration Court.

Two alternative ways to design the assessment of marriages of convenience are proposed in this thesis: interpretation of the law in accordance with its wording, or interpretation of the law with the aid of somewhat modified criteria for the assessment of marriages of convenience. The latter alternative is found to have more advantages than the former.},
  author       = {Månsson, Johan},
  keyword      = {Folkrätt,EU-rätt,förvaltningsrätt,migrationsrätt,mänskliga rättigheter,uppehållstillstånd på grund av anknytning,familjeåterförening,skenäktenskap,public international law,EU law,administrative law,migration law,human rights law,family reunification,marriages of convenience},
  language     = {swe},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {Skenäktenskap i teori och praktik. Ett undantag från rätten till familjeåterförening},
  year         = {2013},
}