Yesterday the government announced a number of new changes to the Immigration Rules, which will come into effect on or after 19th November of this year.

The Home Office have addressed various matters within Asylum, Family Life and Settlement legislation. Notably, regarding the latter, it is imperative that those relying on an English language qualification for ILR and Naturalisation take a ‘secure’ test, while the £35,000 minimum earnings threshold for Tier 2 Settlement applications is set to be introduced on 6th April 2016.

With regards to business immigration, there have been several amendments to the Points-Based System:

  • Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent)
    • The endorsement criteria used by Tech City UK has been modified in order to ‘better reflect the skills and experience of target applicants who are most likely to add value to the UK digital technology sector’.
  • Tier 1 Entrepreneur
    • Confirmation of what supporting documents are eligible for illustrating continuous trading and demonstrating job creations when extending leave.
    • Additional eligibility criteria to test the genuineness of applications, focusing on any potential previous investments made in a UK business by applicants
  • Tiers 2 and 5
    • Four digital technology jobs and nurses have been added to the Tier 2 Shortage Occupation List. Concerning the latter, there was widespread criticism of legislation preventing the recruitment of migrant nurses, at a time when the demand was outweighing the supply. Senior figures, such as NHS England’s chief executive Simon Stevens, were contributing factors to the Home Office fixing what was undoubtedly, a misjudgement.
    • An increase in annual allocations for places available under the Youth Mobility Scheme for 2016.

For further advice on any of the above, do not hesitate to contact the team