Sunday, 26 December 2010

Tier 2 Certificates of Sponsorship Interm Limit Until 23 April 2011

The UKBA announced a temporary limit of the number of Certificates of Sponsorship that UK sponsors can issue under TIER 2 up until 5 April 2011.

The temporary limit has been set to 10,382 certificates both initial and extension applications are included in the Temporary Limit.
Any sponsor that issues a Certificate to a potential worker will be considered as 'USED' and will be removed from any allocation given to the sponsor, even if the certificate was assigned in error or is not used by the Potential Tier 2 Migrant

All applications Under Tier 2 (Intra Co Transfer), Tier 2 (Ministers of Religion) and Tier2 (sportsperson) have not been included in the Temporary Limit.

The total number of Certificates of Sponsorship include any that have been allocated to a Tier 2 Sponsors BUT The UKBA has set aside a small number of certificates for exceptional circumstances.

You may request more certificates from this small number set aside if:

You are an existing sponsor that needs additional certificates in exceptional circumstances during the temporary limit

OR

You are a new sponsor licensed in the process of the temporary limit.

For more on the procedure of applying to be a UK Tier 2 Sponsor click HERE

Thursday, 23 December 2010

UK Tier 1 Applications from Outside UK Now Closed

From 23 December 2010 the UKBA has stopped accepting Tier 1 (General) applications from outside the UK.

TIER 1 applications submitted up until the end of 22 December 2010 are being processed as normal (or meant to be) taking into account the monthly limit which the UKBA has already announced will only open in January 2011.

Tuesday, 21 December 2010

UKBA announces Closure of Tier 1 and New Limit for Tier 2

In the next chapter of the Tier 1 (General) Saga the UKBA has just announced that from 23 December 2010 they will no longer be accepting Tier 1 (General) applications from outside the UK.

This step is meant to ensure that they will not exceed the Limit set for Tier 1 applications between 19 July 2010 and April 2011. Any applications submitted up until the 22 December 2010 will be processed as usual however the UKBA has previously announced that they will only start issuing Tier 1 applications in January 2011.

The UKBA has announced that they will not reopen the Tier 1 for overseas applications and Tier 1 applications inside the UK will still be open until 5 April 2011.

Also the UKBA today announced that it has set up a limit of numbers for Certificates of Sponsorship available for Tier 2 sponsors to 10832.

Stay posted as I am certain there will be more to follow on this.

2010: Look back at Year in UK Politics

Monday, 20 December 2010

UK Courts Rules Interim Cap unlawful

The temporary Cap on non-EU workers entering the UK was introduced "unlawfully" according to High Court on 17th December 2010.

The temporary cap was challenged on the basis that ministers had not gone through the proper parliamentary procedures and "sidestepping" parliamentary approval.

The JCWI (Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants) and English Community Care Association were responsible for the challenge that was upheld by the Judges on Friday.

The Home Office stated that the ruling did not affect the permanent cap meant to be introduced in April next year.

What this means then is that the temporary cap is no longer meant to be in place although I have still not seen anything about this on the UKBA web site yet besides for the announcement itself.

Again the main points to be taken from this is that if you are looking to submit a Tier 1 or Tier 2 application that you do so as soon as possible.

Immigration Minister Damian Green was reported to have said "we will do all in our power to continue to prevent a rush of applications before our more permanent...."

Thursday, 16 December 2010

New UK Bio Metric Resident Permits introduced for Tier 1 and Tier 5 of the Points Based System

The UKBA has announced that from 14 December 2010 any applicant applying for Further Leave to Remain in the UK under Tier 1 or Tier 5 will HAVE TO submit their biometrics with the application.

Successful applicants are meant to be issued a Bio Metric Residence Permit and this will serve as evidence as of the holder's permission to stay in the UK and conditions of the stay, it also will be able to verify the holder's identity, rights/permission to work and access to public services.

Postal applications as well as applications in person will be allowed. With the postal application the UKBA will send a letter once they have received the application and applicants will be able to submit their BIOMETRIC DATA at one of the 17 Post Offices or at one of the 11 Home Office Biometric Data Centers - these are by appointment only.

For more info and to check whether you possibly need a BioMetric Resident Permit click HERE

Monday, 13 December 2010

English Language Requirement for visa applicants applying to join Partners in the United Kingdom Further explanation

From the 29th November 2010 any non-EU migrant who is looking to enter or remain in the United Kingdom as the partner/spouse/unmarried partner of a British Citizen or a person settled in the UK HAS to demonstrate that they can speak English by taking one of the approved English Language Tests

Any applicant will need to meet the requirement if:

You are a national of a country NOT INSIDE the EU and Switzerland
You are in a relationship with a British Citizen or person settled here
You intend on applying to enter or remain in the UK as a husband/wife/civil partner/proposed civil partner same sex partner, Fiance unmarried partner


Any application type of the above needs to be submitted with proof that they hold at least level A1 in English which is the same as the SKILLED WORKER (TIER2)

With the current rules applicants already have to satisfy various criteria when applying for the permission to enter the UK and have to demonstrate that the marriage is indeed genuine and that applicants can financially support themselves inside the UK.

UK Student Visitor For English Language Students

From the 10th January 2011 English Language Students who are to attend English Language Courses only in the UK will be able to apply for an extended student visitor for up to 11 Months.

The extended Student Visitor Visa will be only for applicants outside the UK and student wanting to study non-English language courses in the UK for longer than six months will still require a Tier 4 visa. Non-Visa Nationals who would under normal circumstances need a visa to study longer than six months NEED TO APPLY for the Extended Visa.

Other Visa Requirements and restrictions of the Extended Student Visitor will be the same as the Student Visitor already in place.

The Student Visitor does not allow:

Students to work in the UK
Take up employment in the UK
Bring any dependents in the UK
extend the visa or switch into another category


The fee for the new extended student visitor will be the same as the current fee for the Student Visitor.

Thursday, 9 December 2010

More on UK Student Fee Increase

University and College Union member Sally Hunt speaks about the increase and how the new proposals could adversely affect UK Universities.

UK Students March to Parliament

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Tougher UK Student Visa rules are coming.....

7 December 2010

As part of the UK Govt's efforts to reduce the numbers of immigration a new consultation on the entry requirements of Tier4 Student Visa route.

The UK Home Office recently reported that 41% of all students entering the UK through the Tier 4 Student category were studying at below degree level courses.

Some of the changes proposed by Damian Green are harder entry criteria, limitations on the work that Tier 4 Students can do and an end to students staying in the UK looking for work after their graduations.

These changes further indicate the level of the Govt's commitment to keeping their promise of reducing immigration numbers, recently we have seen the introduction of Highly Trusted Sponsors and the A and B sponsors list, which in my opinion did little to help.

Some of the proposals mentioned are:

reducing numbers of below degree level foreign students
introducing a more difficult English language requirement
imposing limitations to student's ability to work in the UK and bring dependents
confirming any student visa extensions are in line with academic progression


If you would like to read the written ministerial statement on TIER 4 STUDENT CLICK HERE

Tier 1 Limit for December 2010 has been reached

The UKBA has just announced that the monthly limit for Tier 1 applications for December has been reached.

The monthly limit of 600 applications has been reached and the UK will not be processing any more applications for the month of December 2010.

As explained in previous posts you may still submit an application during the month even if the limit has been reached.

I suggest that anyone looking to make an application of this type submit their forms and documents as soon as possible.

Monday, 6 December 2010

UK Sports Visitor Visa Explained

Sport Visitor Visa for the UK:

The intention behind this type of visa is to allow a method for sportspeople coming into the UK to do one of the below without having to apply under the points based system.

What type of people and sports qualify for the Visa?

Anyone coming to the UK for a specific event, tournament, competition or series of events or as a member of an international overseas team. This also includes people coming for type events and exhibition matches.

This type of Visa is also for people entering the UK for personal appearances and promotions like Television Interview, book signings, negotiating contracts or to arrange sponsorship deals.

Also people that are looking to enter the UK to undertake a trial as long as the trial is not in front of an audience either paying or non paying.

Tuition Fees For Poorest

Under the new scheme from the Govt which was unveiled recently, could see the poorest, disadvantaged youth receiving up to two years tuition fees paid for them.
This plan intends to increase the number of children from poorer families that will study at universities in the UK.

It has been estimated that about 18,000 students per year could benefit from the Govt's new plan saving them up to 18,000 GBP.

Any student that has been eligible for free school meals and is accepted to University for studies would have one year's tuition fees paid by the Govt.

The funding is intended to come from a 150 Million Pound National Scholarship Programme announced by Vince Cable.


TIER 2 ANNUAL LIMIT EXPLAINED

The annual limit for the Tier 2 (General) category will be set at 20,700 applications for 2011/12.

The limit will not apply to in country applications from people inside the UK, Dependents of Tier 2 applicants, Tier 2 (General) applications where the salary to be received is more than 150,000 GBP, Tier 2 (Sportsperson),Tier 2 (Ministers Of religion), Tier 2 (Intra company Transfers.

Tier 2 (General) applications will be only for graduate level job offers

The shortage occupation will be revised to reflect what the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) considers graduate level jobs. Any existing Tier 2 (General) migrants in the UK will be able to extend their stay provided they now meet the new requirements.

The English Level required for Tier 2 (General) applicant's will be increased from the current basic to intermediate level (B1 on the CEFR)

Certificates of Sponsorship will be considered on a monthly basis and if the monthly quota has been reached then all TIER 2 (General) applications will be ranked in accordance with:

shortage occupations
does the post require higher academic qualifications
salary


All potential Tier 2 workers granted a Certificate of Sponsorship will have 3 months to apply for the Tier 2 Visa

Thursday, 2 December 2010

UK Permit Free Employment Explained

With the announcement recent rule changes to the UK Immigration System meant to be implemented in April 2011, I have been receiving a large number of questions about PERMIT FREE EMPLOYMENT and the rules attached.

Permit free employment means work that does not require permission IE: Certificate of Sponsorship etc.

Some existing types of permit free employment are:

Sole Representative of an overseas company
Overseas newspaper representatives, news agencies and some broadcasting agencies

Dependents of any of the above types of Visas

SOLE REPRESENTATIVE QUALIFYING CRITERIA


Applicants must have been employed outside the UK as a member of an overseas company that has its base and conducts most of its business overseas.

The company cannot have another branch or subsidiary in the UK.

Must be considered a senior employee with full permission to make decisions without consulting the mother company

Must intend to be employed on a full time basis in the UK and not undertake any other employment with another company

Cannot hold a majority of the shares in the overseas company

Must be able to accommodate and support any family members without public funding

Must satisfy the English Language Requirement (Click here for more info on the English Language Requirement)

CAN MY FAMILY MEMBERS JOIN ME IN THE UK?


Applicants are able to bring their family members to the UK in any of the above categories

This includes Husbands, wives, civil partners, or eligible partner and of course any children under the age of 18