Tag Archives: 180

Changes to Tier 2 and ILR rules Dec 2017

Tier 2 (General)

The following changes are being made to the Tier 2 scheme:

• Flexibility is being introduced to enable students to apply to switch to Tier 2 after their studies as soon as they have completed their courses. Currently non PhD students cannot apply to switch within the UK until they have received their final results.

• Exemptions from the Resident Labour Market Test are being added for posts to be held by researcher applicants who are recipients of supernumerary research Awards and Fellowships, and for established research team members sponsored by either a Higher Education Institution or a Research Council.

• Pay rates for health sector workers are being brought into line with pay scales in England and each of the devolved administrations, and consolidated in a new table.

• Provision is being made to allow nurses to be sponsored under Tier 2 if they are undertaking an approved programme with a view to returning to practice.

• A provision that is currently set out in the Sponsor Guidance is being incorporated, which restricts how far a migrant’s start date may be put back before it becomes a prohibited change (ie 4 weeks). The restriction now applies only to Tier 2 (General) Migrants, and only to any changes to start date which occur after leave has been granted.

Changes to indefinite leave to remain in work categories

The requirement to have had absences from the UK of no more than 180 days per year in order to qualify for settlement, which currently applies to main applicants, is being extended to partners of Points-Based System Migrants. To ensure that this requirement does not have retrospective effect, only absences from the UK during periods of leave granted under the rules in place from 11 January 2018 will count towards the 180 days.

If you need Immigration legal assistance with your Tier 2 sponsorship licence application or your permanent residency application, please contact us.

January 2015: ILR missing records of absences..counting the days

Migrants who travel extensively may have trouble compiling an accurate schedule of absences to support their application for ILR, especially those who used IRIS in the past or those who are using the ePassport gates under the Registered Traveller Scheme. This is due to the fact that their passports will not have been stamped on entry.

Migrants who have no or very few records of their travels because they have lost their previous passports or have a large number of their trips that were not recorded by the Immigration Officer at the port, can always approach the Home Office by filing a subject access request (SAR) to get a copy of their immigration files.

However it would appear that this strategy may not always pay up if we are to rely on a recent Home Office’s letter responding to a (SAR) which stated: ‘You should be aware that not all Landing Cards are retained by the Home Office – for example, those cards for foreign nationals who are simply re-entering on their existing long-term permission to remain are not retained. This will explain why we do not hold card copies or records for every time you have traveled. Furthermore, nor do we hold all data electronically for entries/exits to/from the United Kingdom. Although you may have seen reference to the Home Office’s e-Borders system, you should be aware that this, so far, only covers 55% of all passenger movements in and out of the United Kingdom and some routes are not yet covered. You may therefore have undertaken a journey not currently covered by e-Borders.’,

Whilst the Home Office may have kept records of some migrants’ comings and goings, they will not have any evidence of re-entries via IRIS. It is understood that these data were destroyed when the IRIS scheme was closed.

It would appear that in most cases, when considering an ILR application, the Home Office has to rely on the migrant’s passport and schedule of absences to decide whether the continuous residence requirement has been met.

To avoid any undue complications when applying for ILR, migrants should keep a record of all their travels and ensure that their passport and BRP are kept safe at all times.

For further information on how to calculate your absences and find out whether you have broken your continuous residence click here.