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New Hong Kong British National (Overseas) Visa Route

July 28th, 2020

New Hong Kong British National (Overseas) Visa Route The UK Government has published a policy statement on the new Hong Kong British National (Overseas) (BN(O) Visa route for Hong Kong residents with British National (Overseas) status and their immediate family members, including non-BN(O) citizens. The UK Government’s decision to introduce a new Hong Kong BN(O)…

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COVID-19 No Further UK Visa Extensions

July 20th, 2020

The Home Office does not intend to extend the Coronavirus Policy to automatically extend visas beyond 31 July 2020. The Home Office will instead make case-by-case assessments. Until now, those with visas or leave expiring between 24 January 2020 and 31 July 2020 could apply to have their visas extended without any additional cost by…

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UK HOUSE PRICES

July 15th, 2020

The housing market, as with the rest of the economy, has been hit hard by the coronavirus pandemic. The lockdown meant activity slowed sharply, with sales at half the levels of a year earlier. Viewings, sales and moves have now resumed in much of the UK, but buyers and sellers face fresh unease about job…

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Stamp duty holiday: How will it work?

July 9th, 2020

The government has temporarily increased the stamp duty threshold to £500,000 for property sales in England and Northern Ireland, until 31 March 2021, to boost the property market and help buyers struggling because of the coronavirus crisis. Anyone completing on a main residence costing up to £500,000 between 8 July 2020 and 31 March 2021…

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Stamp Duty ‘Holiday’ To Be Introduced To Help Rebuild Economy And Revive The Housing Market

July 6th, 2020

The Government is considering introducing a six-month stamp duty (SDLT) holiday to revive the housing market later this year.The temporary measure would remove tax on the purchase of homes at the lower end of the housing market. Treasury officials are said to be looking at raising the threshold at which homebuyers start paying SDLT. Rishi…

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Flexible Furlough Scheme

July 6th, 2020

Businesses have the flexibility to bring furloughed employees back to work part time from 1 July as part of the government’s plan to re-open the UK and kick-start our economy.   From 1 July, businesses can bring furloughed employees back to work on a part-time basis. ⠀ Firms will be given the flexibility to decide…

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Graduate Route To Be Extended As Part Of A Global Talent Drive

July 6th, 2020

The UK government has set up a new cross-departmental unit called the “Office for Talent” to make it easier for international scientists, researchers and innovators to obtain a UK visa to live and work in the UK in the post-Brexit immigration system. ⠀ This announcement follows the recent publication of the UK Research and Development…

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The 14-Day Quarantine Period For UK Arrivals

June 26th, 2020

Currently, people arriving in the UK from outside the Common Travel Area (the UK, Republic of Ireland, Channel Islands and the Isle of Man) must self-isolate for a period of 14 days. Any person arriving into the UK must fill out an online locator contact form – providing details of where they will spend their…

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UKVCAS Service Status Update – Visa Appointments

June 24th, 2020

From 22 June 2020 UKVCAS is adding new service points and opening the booking system to more customers based on registration dates, including those in Belfast, Cardiff Bay, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Manchester. All applicants who had been given access to the booking system would be able to book an appointment until 26 July 2020. It…

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UK says it will extend Hongkongers’ visa rights if China pursues security laws

June 5th, 2020

The foreign secretary, Dominic Raab, stated that UK will extend visa rights for as many as 300,000 Hong Kong British National Overseas (BN(O) passport holders if China continues down the path of imposing repressive security laws. This would allow them to visit the UK without a visa for an extendable period of 12 months and…

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Richmond Upon Thames Is London’s Happiest Place To Live Fifth Year In A Row

April 28th, 2020

For the fifth year in a row, Richmond upon Thames has been voted the happiest place to live in London. The riverside town is the capital’s home of rugby and has great sports facilities. The town itself has a mix of boutiques, independents and high street brands with bars and pubs on the riverbank. This…

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House Prices After Coronavirus

April 27th, 2020

The rapid and complete shutdown of the property market resulting from coronavirus lockdown could cause UK house prices to fall by as much as 10% this year. However, according to the research from Savills, while we can expect a severe economic shock in the immediate term, a robust recovery is expected by 2022 and a…

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Coronavirus: Home Office Immigration Status Update

April 21st, 2020

The Home Office guidance published on 24 March 2020 confirmed that if you are currently in the UK and unable to return home due to the COVID-19 crisis and your current visa expires between 24 January 2020 – 31 May 2020, then your leave will be extended until 31 May 2020. However, this is extension…

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Coronavirus (COVID 19): If you are on a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa and your business has been disrupted

April 21st, 2020

If you are on a Tier 1 Entrepreneur visa and your business has been disrupted you no longer need to employ at least 2 people for 12 consecutive months each. The 12 month period you are required to employ someone for can be made up of multiple jobs across different months. Time when your employees…

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Financial support for businesses during COVID-19 – Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

April 14th, 2020

If you cannot maintain your current workforce because your operations have been severely affected by coronavirus (COVID-19), you can furlough employees and apply for a grant that covers 80% of their usual monthly wage costs, up to £2,500 a month, plus the associated Employer National Insurance contributions and pension contributions  on that subsidised furlough pay.…

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UK House Prices Projected To Fall By 3% in 2020

April 7th, 2020

House sales in the UK are expected to fall this year, as the Covid-19 pandemic put the property market into deep freeze. According to Knight Frank, if the current lockdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic continues in the UK for the next couple of months, the number of residential sales across the U.K. is estimated…

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(COVID-19): guidance for Tier 2 sponsors

April 2nd, 2020

Guidance has been issued by the Home Office concerning Tier 2 visa sponsor licence responsibilities. With an increasing number of non-UK employees likely to be absent from work or working remotely, the Home Office has instructed Tier 2 visa sponsors to follow certain steps to remain compliant with their duties as a sponsor. Any employee…

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Coronavirus (COVID-19): UK Visa Applications

April 1st, 2020

If you are in the UK and your leave expires between 24 January 2020 and 31 May 2020, you can apply to switch to a long-term UK visa from within the UK. This includes those who would not normally be able to switch to a visa from within the UK, and would normally need to…

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Deferral of VAT payments due to coronavirus (COVID-19)

March 30th, 2020

The government announced temporary changes to the VAT payments to help businesses manage their cash flow. If you’re a UK VAT registered business and have any VAT payments due between 20 March 2020 and 30 June 2020, you have the option to defer the VAT payment until a later date or you can pay the…

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COVID-19 IMMIGRATION UPDATE: Temporary Closures Of Visa And Citizenship Application Centres Across The UK

March 30th, 2020

Sopra Steria, the third party consultancy responsible for managing the UK Visa and Citizenship Application Service Centres (“UKVACS”) on behalf of the Home Office, released a list of the centres which are temporarily closing until further notice due to coronavirus outbreak. The following Sopra Steria locations will be closed: First day of closure Aberdeen –…

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