On 1 December 2020, the UK’s new points-based system was finally launched. It has been described as “simple, effective and flexible system” which reflects the advice from MAC and the Law Commission. From 1 January 2021, this new immigration system will also be open to EEA national applicants as the Brexit transition period would have ended. This also signifies that the Tier system is coming to an end. Our immigration team have closely studied the latest updates to the immigration rules ad would be happy to advise on the new immigration system in a consultation. Please contact our team in order to arrange an initial meeting.
Changes to the former Tier 1 routes
High net worth business people and individuals from outside the EEA who are the “brightest and best talent” used to be able to come to the UK for non-sponsored work under the Tier 1 routes. These categories were the first to change over the past couple of years and therefore the changes to these categories are less significant than others. Nevertheless, there are notable changes. The Start-up, Innovator and Global Talent were already established and replaced the former Tier 1 (Entrepreneur), Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) and Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) routes (although applicants can still apply for their Tier 1 Entrepreneur extensions and indefinite leave to remain). The new(ish) routes were contained under Appendix W, however on 1 December 2020 they have moved to the following:
Start-up, Innovator and Global Talent visa applicants must receive an endorsement from a Home Office endorsing body and attain the required number of points for the application.
The Investor Visa rules remain under Part 6A, for the time being.
Changes to the former Tier 2 routes
The Tier 2 routes were for skilled sponsored workers from outside the EEA. Part 6A of the Immigration Rules set out the requirements for the 4 Tier 2 categories; Tier 2 (General), Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer), Tier 2 (Sportsperson) and Tier 2 (Minister of Religion). Applicants to any of these routes must be issued with a valid Certificate of Sponsorship (“CoS”) before making an application to the Home Office. The CoS is issued by a Home Office approved sponsor; who has the legal obligation to comply with a strict set of compliance duties. As with the Tier 1 categories, the Tier 2 categories have been rebranded with the requirements under separate appendices.
- Skilled Worker (formally Tier 2 (General)) – Appendix Skilled Worker – this includes rules for the new Health and Care Visa route which opened on 4 August 2020;
- Intra-Company Transfer – Appendix Intra-Company Transfer Routes;
- Sportsperson – Appendix T2 Sportsperson;
- Minister of Religion – Appendix T2 Minister of Religion.
Changes to the former Tier 4 routes
The Tier 4 category which consisted of the Tier 4 (General) and Tier 4 (Child) routes were for individuals from outside the EEA who came to the UK as a long term student and sponsored by an education provider on the Home Office register of sponsors. The rules for the Tier 4 categories were also contained in Part 6A of the Immigration Rules. These routes have recently been replaced on 5 October 2020 by the General Student and Child Student routes. The rules for these new visas were briefly under Appendix ST and Appendix CS but these have now been changed to Appendix Student and Immigration Rules Child Student.
Changes to the former Tier 5 routes
The rules for any of the visas under the Tier 5 category were previously found under Part 6A of the Immigration Rules. However, each route is now found under its own Appendix, as set out below.
- Youth Mobility Scheme – Appendix T5 (Temporary Worker) Youth Mobility Scheme; and
- Temporary Workers in the following sub-categories –
- Charity Workers – Appendix T5 (Temporary Worker) Charity Worker;
- Creative or Sporting – Appendix T5 (Temporary Worker) Creative or Sporting Worker;
- Government Authorised Exchange – Appendix T5 (Temporary Worker) Government Authorised Exchange Worker route;
- International Agreement – Appendix T5 (Temporary Worker) International Agreement Worker;
- Religious Workers – Appendix T5 (Temporary Worker) Religious Worker;
- Seasonal Workers – Appendix T5 (Temporary Worker) Seasonal Worker.
Changes to the other work and study categories not included in the Tier system
Other visa routes for work and study which were previously not under the Tier system have also been reformed under the new rules. The Short-term student, UK Ancestry and Representative of an Overseas Business (“Sole Representative”) routes were previously under Part 3 and Part 5 of the rules respectively. Under the new points based system, rules for short-term students are found under Appendix Short-term Student (English language), UK Ancestry applicants should now refer to Appendix UK Ancestry and the rules for Sole Representatives are under Appendix Representative of an Overseas Business.
Using our Immigration Solicitors in London submit an application under the new points based system
Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration matter. You can instruct one of our immigration and visa legal representatives to successfully assist you with a new points based system application. Our solicitors and Barristers will help you comply with the Home Office’s requirements and meet the Immigration Rules.
Caseworkers at the Home Office are trained to reject applications, which are improperly prepared, for example by failing to provide the correct supporting evidence. In order to ensure your application succeeds, our solicitors and barristers will ensure all specified documents must be provided.
The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.
Successfully submit an application under the new points based system with our Immigration Solicitors in London
Our team of solicitors and barristers are specialist immigration lawyers who act in your best interest. We offer a client-tailored approach from the outset. From the very first meeting, we will be able to advise you in respect of your prospects of submitting a visa application before your application even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation and submission of a skilled worker visa application and ensure that you meet all the requirements under the Immigration Rules.
We are based in the legal epicentre of London, just across the road from the Royal Courts of Justice in order to ensure we get the best results for our clients. We are minutes away from the Immigration and Asylum Tribunal, the Royal Courts of Justice and other central London courts.
Preparation is the key to successful immigration applications. Our UK immigration and visa solicitors are here to guide you through the complex immigration rules and requirements. If you wish to meet one of our lawyers, please call our Immigration Team so we can assess your case and arrange your legal consultation to discuss a new points-based system application.
Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.