In November 2016 and April 2017 a number of changes to the Immigration Rules will come into force. They mainly affect the Tier 2 (General) and Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer) Visa categories and UK Sponsor Licence programme.
The following requirements are due to come into force on 24th November 2016:
- The salary threshold for new Tier 2 (General) recruits will increase to £25,000
- The salary threshold for new Tier 2 (Intra-company Transfer) (ICT) Short Term employees will increase to £30,000
- The Tier 2 ICT Skills transfer sub-category will be closed
- Overseas graduate hires will be more heavily weighted within the Tier 2 Certificate of Sponsorship (CoS) monthly allocation system
- The salary threshold for Tier 2 Graduate Trainees will decrease to £23,000
- Graduate Trainee places available to every sponsor will increase from five to 20 per year
- Nurses will remain on the Shortage Occupations list but a Resident Labour Market Test will now be required before a Certificate of Sponsorship can be assigned
- The 28-day grace period for overstayers is to be abolished and any application for further leave to remain by an overstayer will be refused unless ‘good cause’ is given and it is made within 14 days of the applicant’s leave expiring.
Further changes to be introduced in April 2017 include:
- Sponsor Licence holders will have to pay £1,000 per hire, per year. This will be known as the Immigration Skills Charge. Small businesses and charities will only have to pay £364 per person, per year. PhD roles, Tier 2 (ICT) Graduate Trainees Visas and Tier 4 to Tier 2 Visa switchers will be exempt from the charge
- The Tier 2 (General) Visa minimum salary will increase to £30,000 per annum
- The Tier 2 (ICT – Short Term Staff) Visa route will be closed
- The minimum salary for Tier 2 (ICT) Visa applicants who are classed as ‘high earners’ will be reduced to £120,000
- Tier 2 (ICT) Visa minimum salary requirement will rise to £41,500.
If you require further information about these upcoming changes to the Immigration Rules, find an immigration solicitor on Solicitors Guru today.