Changes to UK Migration Laws for Workers: Explained
Posted on 2nd February 2024 at 11:54
Cast your mind back to December 2023. Naturally, most of us were planning for Christmas and starting to panic that all of the gifts that we had yet to order may not arrive in time (maybe that was just me?”. Whilst all of this was going on, the government made a big announcement; the biggest ever cut in net migration. In case you missed it, here is some of the information for workers moving to the UK.
The Home Secretary announced that due to a need to curb the “abuse of the immigration system”, large changes will be made to the immigration rules in the UK, meaning that approximately 300,000 people that came to the UK last year, would no longer be eligible if they are to move in 2024. The more political explanation that was given is that immigration is still too high. The UK has more control over immigration levels (since leaving the EU) and a change would result in less pressure being placed on our healthcare system and other public services.
Relocation Support Services works closely with immigration lawyers and advisers particularly when it comes to individuals and families coming to the UK for work, so we have put together a helpful guide to show you when the laws will begin to be enforced and what they could mean for you.
(Please note that we have only listed rule changes that effect workers moving to the UK to see the full Immigration Factsheet visit: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/home-secretary-unveils-plan-to-cut-net-migration).
Changes to Health and Care Worker Visa Rules for Dependents
11th March 2024
The Heath and Care Worker Visa is for qualified doctors, nurses and other health care professionals that wish to work within the NHS, an NHS supplier or in adult social care.
Currently, a dependent or a partner over the age of 18 is allowed to move with the worker but that is due to change in March. As of March 2024, anyone that is planning on working in the UK under a Health and Care Worker Visa will not be allowed to bring a dependent.
If the person is already in the process of moving to the UK before 11th March 2024, they will still be allowed to bring the dependent(s) as allowed under the previous rules.
New Immigration Salary List
14th March 2024
The Shortage Occupation List (SOL) is a list of jobs produced by the government when there is a shortage of skilled workers within the UK, for that particular occupation.
As of March 2024, the list will be replaced by the new Immigration Salary List. The Migration Advice Committee will recommend which occupations should be temporarily added to the new list. Previously if the job you were applying for was on the SOL, a 20% discount on the minimum salary required to qualify for a visa would be put into effect, under the new rules, no such discount exists.
This is likely to impact recruitment strategy for businesses within the sectors affected as well as the workers that plan to move to the UK for work.
Skilled Worker Minimum Salary Threshold Increase
4th April 2024
When applying for a Skilled Worker Visa or being sponsored for a Skilled Worker Visa, your new salary would need to exceed £26,200 (pa). Under new rules the minimum salary will need to be £38,700 (pa).
If you are already in the process of your application, you will still be eligible under the rules that are in place before April 2024.
It is important to note that this new rule does not affect Health and Care Visas or any roles within the education sector.
Removal of Sponsor License Renewals
6th April 2024
Currently, if you are sponsored by an employer to work in the UK and you wish to stay beyond the initial four-year period, you’ll have to pay for a renewal application.
Under the new rule, this will no longer be the case. Instead, anyone that is already sponsored to live and work in the UK will receive an automatic 10-year extension.
Sponsors will not have to do anything as the change will be automatic but will only effect sponsorships that are due to expire on or after 6th April 2024
Share this post: