In August alone, more than 6,000 migrants took the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) to the administrative courts over its decision to grant them "subsidiary protection" — a qualified for of asylum — rather than full refugee status, bringing the total to more than 17,000 applications, the majority of which are upheld.
The German authorities have struggled to deal with more than a million migrants who made their way into the country in 2015, initially being overwhelmed by the sheer volume arriving in the country.
Many had not been "processed" in their original country of arrival — in breach of the Dublin convention under the Schengen agreement. Moreover, thousands of the migrants have been found to have given the authorities false ID papers, exacerbating the situation.
The Die Welt newspaper said that more than 210,000 people had received orders to leave Germany in August, but 158,190 had waivers of some kind that allowed them to stay temporarily. The proposed legislation also allows for the authorities to inform migrants refused asylum only 30 days before the deportation date in an effort to give them less chance to move or evade the authorities.
The German Government is now drafting new legislation to obviate the issue. The draft legislation states:
"If deportation is not possible because the foreigner has, for example, misled authorities about identity or nationality, or is not cooperating with efforts to secure a replacement passport, then he will no longer receive exceptional leave to stay."
The recent court decisions over refugee status will pile more pressure on German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who faced severe criticism over her 'open doors' policy on refugees and who has refused repeated requests to set a cap on the number of refugees granted asylum in 2016.
The fact that thousands of asylum seekers have now been granted full refugee status — conferring on them considerable rights under the Geneva Convention — will mean that the authorities will have more work to do to integrate them into the community.