25.07.2018 The Latest Changes to the Immigration Rules

25.07.2018 The Latest Changes to the Immigration Rules

An immigration route for highly-skilled individuals with ‘exceptional talent’ is to be widened to include fashion designers.
Tier 1 ‘exceptional talent’ visas are awarded to leading talent in the arts, medicine, science, engineering, humanities and digital technology, who demonstrated that they have made or have the potential to make significant contribution as a leader in their field.

The scheme will now be open to leading fashion designers. They will have their application assessed by the British Fashion Council under the endorsement remit of Arts Council England (ACE), which is one of five existing endorsing bodies.

The scheme has also been opened up to a wider pool of TV and film applicants, under the remit of ACE, thanks to changes to the list of eligible industry awards and how recently applicants must have won or been nominated for them. The route already covers leading talent in the fields of science, humanities, engineering, medicine, digital technology or the arts and is open to 2,000 people a year.

The Home Office confirmed that doctors and nurses are to be removed from the Tier 2 visa cap.
After the decision to prevent over 2,000 foreign doctors and other essential workers from entering the UK was met with criticism, the UK decided to review its visa system for highly skilled professionals.

The Home Office confirmed previously announced measures to remove doctors and nurses from the Tier 2 visa cap. Such workers will be exempt from the cap on Tier 2 visas, which has been exceeded for six consecutive months.

Under the new plans there will be no restriction on the number of doctors and nurses granted visas through the Tier 2 route.

A new settlement category for Turkish business people, workers and their families who are in the UK under the EU-Turkey European Communities Association Agreement (ECAA)
The Home Office has announced new Immigration Rules to enable Turkish nationals who are in the UK as either European Communities Association Agreement (ECAA) business persons or ECAA workers, as well as their family members, to apply for indefinite leave to remain (ILR) after five years as either an ECAA businessperson or ECAA worker (or equivalent points based system routes), as long as the most recent period of leave was under the ECAA.

Digital Electronic Visa Waiver (EVW) holders will be able to present the document in a digital format for the first time.
From 6th of July 2018 Electronic Visa Waivers (EVW) can be presented in a digital format for the first time, allowing for a smoother journey to the UK.

This means that holders will be permitted to present their EVW in an electronic or printed format to carriers upon departure and a Border Force Officer upon arrival, allowing for a smoother journey to the UK.

Afghan interpreters who served with British army, and their families, and relocated to the UK can apply for permanent residence free of charge
More than 150 interpreters who served on the front line in Helmand Province were granted sanctuary in the UK in 2012 under a five-year visa set to expire next year. Thereby, they faced being sent back to Afghanistan unless they paid the £2,389 fee to apply for indefinite right to remain in the UK. 

After it emerged that Afghan interpreters could face deportation, Home Secretary Sajid Javid confirmed that those Afghan interpreters, who worked with British troops fighting the Taliban, will be allowed to stay in the UK free of charge. 

A new form of leave is to be introduced for children who don’t qualify for Asylum or humanitarian protection under the UK’s existing immigration regime.
This new form of leave will be introduced under section 67 of the immigration Act 2016 – the so called ‘Dubs amendment’ – to help unaccompanied Asylum-seeking children who did not qualify to come to the UK under Dublin III because they did not have family here.

A new form of leave for children who arrived under the Dubs amendment will ensure that those children who do not qualify for refugee or humanitarian protection leave can still remain in the UK long term. Those who qualify for this new form of leave will be able to study, work, access public funds and healthcare. They will be able to apply for settlement after 5 years – without paying a fee. 

UK relaxes visa rules for students from list of 11 countries
The Home Office has added 11 countries, including China, to the list of 28 nations whose students will be able to benefit from a streamlined British visa application process. The Home Office said: “Students from an additional 11 countries, including China, will be able to provide a reduced level of documentation when applying for their Tier 4 visa.” The listed countries are considered “low risk” for issuing Tier 4 student visas.

“All students from these countries still need to meet all requirements under Tier 4 and UK Visas and Immigration reserves the right to request this evidence in full and will do so for a random sample of applications.”

The immigration minister Caroline Nokes said that the change “demonstrates the continued focus on improving the UK’s offer to international students”.

Caroline Nokes added: “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.”

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