29 June 2018
The UK Government has announced changes to the immigration rules that will come into effect on 6 July 2018. Many of the changes are positive and will bring welcome news to those looking to work or invest in the UK.
Below is a summary of the main changes.
Changes to Tier 2 General skilled worker cap
In response to shortages and pressures currently facing the NHS, changes will be made to exempt doctors and nurses from the Tier 2 General limit. Health sector employers will be able to sponsor doctors and nurses without requiring restricted certificates of sponsorship. This will free up places within the limit for other key roles.
Other changes to Tier 2
A change is being made to expand the restriction on Tier 2 workers holding more than 10% of shares in their sponsor so as also to restrict such ownership being held indirectly, such as via another corporate entity.
Tier 2 applicants applying for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) after 6 July 2018, who have been absent from work on maternity, paternity, shared parental or adoption leave will need to submit documentary evidence of the birth or adoption.
The Tier 2 & 5 guidance for sponsors will also be amended to reflect Universal Jobmatch service has been replaced by Find a Job.
Tier 1 Exceptional Talent visa route open for fashion designers
The endorsement of arts applicants is being widened to include those in the fashion industry who are operating leading designer fashion businesses. These applicants will be assessed by the British Fashion Council operating within the endorsement remit of Arts Council England.
New route to settlement for Turkish businesspersons
The new ILR provision will recognise time spent as either an ECAA business person or as a worker, as long as the most recent period of leave was under the ECAA.
The eligibility criteria for main applicants include:
For dependants, children will be granted ILR in line with the main applicant where the relevant criteria are met, whilst spouses, civil partners and unmarried partners will require five years residency, in line with other Points Based System routes, and to meet associated eligibility requirements.