Gay married couple to launch immigration appeal for the right to live together in Milton Keynes

Ben and Brian Page
Ben and Brian Page

A gay married couple who face being forced to live 4,000 miles apart have been given fresh hope in their battle against immigration authorities.

British-born Ben Page wed American architect Brian four years ago.

But in September an immigration tribunal judge insisted Brian, 41, must leave their Oldbrook home and return to the States.

Yet, say the couple, the judge’s ruling did not once mention the fact that they were married.

“It’s crazy, because this government voted to recognise gay marriage. Yet they are forbidding Brian, my legal husband, to have a spouse’s right to stay here,” said Ben.

This week he and Brian finally had some good news in that one of the top immigration judges has granted them the right to appeal the September decision.

The Upper Tribunal’s Judge Gibb said the first judge may have “erred in law” in not conducting an assessment to balance factors such as statutory public interest.

Ben and Brian, who have spent all their savings battling their case so far, have launched a fundraising page to finance the costly appeal.

“All we want is to live as any other married couple, support ourselves and fulfil our dream of adopting children together,” said Ben.

You can donate to their appeal via www.gofundme.com/help-us-fight-the-home-office

Brian is not allowed to work in the UK due to immigration restrictions.

Ben said: “ Neither of us have ever claimed a penny from the UK or US government and never would. We are both educated people who want to get on with our careers.

The couple appealed to city MPs for help. MK South MP Iain Stewart, who is gay himself, said it seems “very strange” that their marriage has not been recognised.

He told the Citizen: “I would have hoped that this would not be an issue these days. I can fully understand why they feel hurt and upset. I hope something can be done so they are not split up.”

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