UK Immigration Rules Update: Returning Residents, Tier 5 Category & Visitor Rules

Earlier this week, we wrote an article setting out the numerous changes to the Tier 4 Student visa route. Please see below for some of the other changes in the Immigration Rules being implemented in the coming months.

Returning Residents to UK

A returning resident is an individual who was previously settled in the UK and is looking to come back to the country. You will only be eligible for a Returning Resident visa if you plan to permanently reside in the UK and had not obtained public funds to help you leave the country. Furthermore, you will be deemed ineligible if you have been absent from the UK for more than two years; unless you are able to show exceptional personal circumstances that led you being out of the country for this long.

Paragraph 19A of the Immigration Rules Part 1 is being amended to include the spouse, civil partner, unmarried partner or same-sex partner of a Home Office employee. Therefore, if a Home Office employee  is serving overseas, their spouse, civil partner, unmarried partner or same-sex partner will be able to accompany them and not lose their settled status after a 2 year absence. Currently this rule applies to partners of British diplomats or of employees of the Department for International Development or the British Council.

Tier 5 (Temporary Worker – Government Authorised Exchange)

Tier 5 of the Points-Based System consists of two categories: Tier 5 Youth Mobility & Tier 5 Temporary Worker. The Government Authorised Exchange visa is a sub category of the Tier 5 Temporary Worker category. This sub category enables individuals to come to the UK to share knowledge, skills and gain work experience through individual schemes which are administered by an overarching sponsor. The following changes are being made to the above mentioned Tier 5 visa category:

  • A minor amendment to the name of the “International Student Internship Scheme (ISIS)” to “International Student Internship Scheme”; and
  • The addition of a new scheme:  “Wales Audit Office Exchange programme”. The aim of the scheme is for international professionals to undertake work experience placements with a range of international audit and inspection bodies.

UK Visitors

The following minor changes are being made to the visitor rules:

  • The Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod is being added to the list of Permit Free Festivals;
  • South African nationals who hold diplomatic passports will be able to travel to the UK visa free for tourism or for the purpose of “visit in transit”; and
  • Transit passengers who are visa nationals have an extended period of 48 hours in which they must leave the UK. This rule currently applies to non visa nationals.

Legal Advice & Successful UK Visa Applications

Our team of experienced and professionally qualified immigration solicitors and barristers will be able to guide you through the process of making a visa application to the UK step by step and limit the possibility of failure by complying with the strict letter of law.

Contact us so that we can review your case and provide you with an assessment.

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