Indian and Chinese Chefs Working in Takeaway Restaurants Excluded from the UK’s Shortage Occupation List

We have previously written about the effect of the UK’s strict immigration rules on Britain’s curry houses, largely due to the skills shortages of chefs who specialise in foreign cuisine and the UK Government’s efforts to deter UK businesses from hiring Tier 2 overseas workers over British settled workers. Whilst this is still a major issue, a further problem for the restaurant industry is that for those restaurants which offer takeaway options, the chefs working in these restaurants are not included in the UK Government’s Shortage Occupation List.

UK Immigration Rules for Tier 2 Workers in Takeaway Restaurants

It is no secret that Brits love a takeaway and research has found that the British public spends billions of pounds a year on takeaways. Further to this, the demand for home-delivered restaurant food is on the rise. Yet, restaurant owners are struggling to maintain their businesses and provide authentic, traditional dishes from their countries of origin. This is largely due to the UK’s stringent immigration rules. Current immigration rules for Tier 2 overseas workers state that chefs who are foreign nationals must be paid £29,570 after accommodation and food expenses. This fee is often too expensive for small family-owned authentic restaurants which are a contributing factor as to why curry houses may be struggling.

Graham Corfied, who is the Managing Director of one of the UK’s biggest online food ordering platforms, has stated that many “small family-run businesses who are often struggling are being forced to close because they are finding it difficult to get the staff”.  

UK Immigration Rules and the Shortage Occupation List

Whilst she was Home Secretary, Theresa May admitted that curry chefs should be included on the  Shortage Occupation List found in Appendix K of the Immigration Rules. However, what the Shortage Occupation List does not give mention to are Tier 2 Overseas chefs who work for restaurants which provide takeaway options, which many curry houses rely on.

Moreover, the UK Government’s insistence on training British nationals to learn these skills and fill the job gaps is in fact putting the future of these industries at risk, as those in the restaurant industry wishing to employ individuals who have the authentic knowledge and understanding of regional dishes are unable to do so. A survey by the British Takeaway Campaign (BTC) highlighted that more than one third of 300 takeaway restaurants were experiencing skills shortages, with 29% claiming that they need to hire skilled Tier 2 overseas workers from abroad.

Hence, the future for many in the restaurant industry remains uncertain, especially if your business is in the takeaway trade. It is important to seek professional legal advice, such as that from our immigration lawyers, if you are a restaurant owner or a chef and looking to make a Tier 2 overseas worker visa application or Tier 2 Sponsor Licence application.

Using Legal Representation to Apply for a Tier 2 Overseas Work Visa and the Application of the Shortage Occupation List

Legal representatives, such as our specialist immigration and visa law firm, are qualified to advise you on immigration law and your immigration status. It is possible to instruct an immigration and visa legal representative to apply for a Tier 2 Overseas Work visa and the application of the Shortage Occupation list.

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, all necessary documents must be provided.

This can be a significant administrative task and you will need to submit the correct documentary evidence. The UK Immigration Rules are complex and a legal representative can help ensure that your application meets the Immigration Rules.

Successfully Apply for a Tier 2 Overseas Workers Wishing for Jobs on the Shortage Occupation List

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 immigration status and the merit of your visa and immigration application before your matter even reaches the Home Office UK Visa & Immigration department. We can assist you with the preparation of your immigration and visa application and ensure that you meet all the requirements of the relevant 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.

Contact our London immigration solicitors on 02071830570 or complete our contact form.

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