Today sees the new Ley de Extranjería (Aliens Act) come into force after having been published in the Official Gazette for the requisite period of time.
This is the fourth amendment to the act in the past decade and increases the maximum time that an immigrant can be detained before being deported to sixty days.
The law also requires that after admission to an ICE by order of a judge, another judge shall be responsible for ensuring the fundamental human rights of the detainee.
Immigrants who have renewed their initial residency permit will be allowed to bring over their spouse/partner and children under 18 years of age, those over 16 years of age automatically receiving a work permit. However, it will take five years of legal residence before an immigrant can bring over parents and other relatives and the only if those relatives are over 65 years of age and there is good reason.
The new law also allows for the transfer of children to the custody of various bodies within the autonomous communities, a measure designed to alleviate overcrowding in the reception centres. This will also reduce some of the administrative problems involved with, for example, transferring immigrants from the Canary Islands to the mainland.