The Home Office routinely lost thousands of documents which could prove the right of immigrants to stay in the UK, a former official has claimed.
The department mislaid passports, letters and other correspondence leaving immigrants 'destitute' as they were unable to prove they were allowed to work.
The claims have renewed calls for the crisis-hit department to be fully overhauled in the wake of the Windrush scandal.
Up to 63 Windrush migrants may have been deported wrongfully in the fiasco - but the department has not been able to track most of them down, Home Secretary Sajid Javid revealed.
And thousands of landing cards which could have proved their right to stay in Britain were destroyed by officials in 2010, it emerged.
In the latest slew of damaging claims to hit the Home Office, a former senior immigration official told The Guardian that at its height the department was routinely mislaying vital documents.
The revelation that Windrush immigrants may have been deported because of a Home Office failure has sparked calls to overhaul the Government's immigration policy. Amber Rudd (pictured right) resigned after she wrongly claimed the department did not have immigration deportation targets. Her replacement, Sajid Javid (pictured left) has vowed to improve the department
Birth certificates, children's passports and education documents have all vanished, the newspaper reports.
A woman, 36, from a former Communist state, told how her passport was lost by the Home Office leaving her destitute for 10 years.
June 22, 1948 - The Empire Windrush passenger ship docked at Tilbury from Jamaica.
The 492 passengers were temporarily housed near Brixton in London. Over the following decades some 500,000 came to the UK.
Many arrived on their parents' passports and were not formally naturalised as British citizens.
1973 - A new immigration Act comes into force putting the onus on individuals to prove they have previously been resident in the UK.
2010 - The Home Office destroyed thousands of landing card slips recording Windrush immigrants’ arrival dates in the UK.
The move came despite staff warnings that the move would make it harder to check the records of older Caribbean-born residents experiencing residency difficulties, it was claimed
2014 - A protection that exempted Commonwealth residents from enforced removal was removed under a new law. Theresa May was Home Secretary at the time.
Under a crackdown on illegals, Windrush immigrants are obliged to provide proof they were resident in the UK before 1973.
July 2016 - Mrs May becomes Prime Minister.
April 2018 - Allegations that Windrush immigrants are being threatened with deportation break. Theresa May issued a grovelling apology to Caribbean leaders after major backlash
April 29 - Amber Rudd resigns after inadvertently misleading Parliament by wrongly claiming there were no deportation targets
Another woman who has lived in the UK for 21 years had her application to stay turned down and the documents she sent were never returned - harming her ability to work and get paid.