On June 15th, the UK Immigration agencies announced several changes to the immigration rules and laws. The changes will go into effect on July 6th, 2018 and affect Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 4 visas and other categories of immigrants. Caroline Nokes, UK Immigration Minister discussed the changes and stated that:
“Today’s changes show that we are able to adapt to meet the demands of our frontline services and ensure we are able to attract people who can bring real benefits to our creative industries. At the same time, we are confirming our commitment to those children in need with our ongoing support while demonstrating our recognition for people who have risked their lives by serving with our armed forces”.
Nurses and Doctors
Until now, the Tier 2 (General) Visa included doctors and nurses in their monthly Certificate of Sponsorship (COS) limit; however, with the new rules, these professionals are now excluded from it. This change is suggested to free up to 40% of Tier 2 places according to the Home Office, which can reduce the long wait time for processing.
Despite this change, companies will still have to prove that they were unable to find a UK worker for the position, but the visas will be allocated from the company’s unrestricted COS allocation.
Even though this move may make processing faster, it could create some problems, especially for those employers which hire short-term foreign employees for seasonal jobs. Instead of immediately getting the visas from their allocation of restricted COS, they now have to wait until they have enough unrestricted COS to start the sponsorship process.