The Government of the Russian Federation has developed and submitted to the State Duma of the Russian Federation a bill suggesting the possibility of non-application by courts of such a form of administrative punishment as expulsion from the country in respect of foreigners and stateless persons who violated the rules of entry or stay (residence) in the Russian Federation (in particular, the rules of migration registration, movement or the procedure for choosing a place of stay or residence transit through the territory of the Russian Federation, as well as non-fulfillment of the obligation to notify about the confirmation of their residence in the Russian Federation).
But it should be noted that it is proposed to apply this rule to a foreign citizen or a stateless person only in cases when the following conditions are met in aggregate:
-availability of a residence permit;
-availability of registration at the place of residence in the federal cities of Moscow, St. Petersburg or the corresponding regions;
-the presence of no more than one (within a year) violation of migration legislation.
In other cases, expulsion from the country is proposed to be applied on a general basis.
As follows from the explanatory note, the bill was developed in compliance with the Resolution of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation (hereinafter – the "Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation") Dated February 17, 2016, No. 5-P in the case of M. Tsurkan. The Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation considered the case and declared unconstitutional the provisions of the Code of Administrative Offences of the Russian Federation (hereinafter referred to as the "Administrative Code of the Russian Federation") on the application of punishment in the form of administrative expulsion in relation to foreign citizens who violated the obligation to notify the authorized bodies of the confirmation of their place of residence, but at the same time having a residence permit and registered at the place of residence in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Moscow or Leningrad region.
The Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation pointed out the need for courts to take into account mitigating circumstances (duration of residence in the Russian Federation, marital status, income level, housing security, law-abiding behavior, payment of Russian taxes, applying for Russian citizenship and other circumstances), taking into account which the issue of proportionality of a person's violation of migration legislation and the application of punishment to him in the form of expulsions outside the Russian Federation.
Please note that with respect to the above-mentioned foreign citizens and stateless persons, the bill simultaneously assumes the introduction of a new part (Part 5) in Article 18.8 of the Administrative Code of the Russian Federation, which provides for mandatory expulsion from the country in case of repeated violation of the rules of entry or the regime of stay (residence) in the Russian Federation within one year.;
Thus, on the one hand, the amendments can be called softening the migration legislation, but, on the other hand, it is obvious that the tightening of norms in relation to foreign persons and stateless persons who have committed repeated violations.
At the moment, the bill is at the stage of preliminary consideration by the State Duma of the Russian Federation.
1 Draft Law No. 1134866-6 "On Amendments to the Code of Administrative Offences of the Russian Federation (in Terms of Clarifying Administrative Responsibility for Violation by a Foreign Citizen or a Stateless Person of the Rules of Entry into the Russian Federation or the Regime of Stay (Residence) in the Russian Federation)