Today, Thursday 14 March 2013, a written ministerial statement was laid before Parliament outlining a number of changes to the Immigration Rules.
These new changes will come into effect on 6 April 2013, and include changes to:
- The Tier 1 (Graduate entrepreneur) route, to include additional places for talented MBA graduates from UK Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). This will also include the UK Trade and Investment’s elite global graduate entrepreneur scheme.
- The Tier 1 (Exceptional talent) route, to split the application process so that applicants will no longer have to pay the full fee up front. This will also mean applicants will not have to submit their passport to us while their application for endorsement by a designated competent body is being considered.
- Tier 2, to improve the flexibility for intra-company transferees and for employers carrying out the resident labour market test.
- The shortage occupation list and the codes of practice for skilled workers.
- Tier 4, to allow completing PhD students to stay in the UK for one year beyond the end of their course to find skilled work or to set up as an entrepreneur.
- Family and private life – these are minor changes to reflect feedback from legal practitioners and our caseworkers.
In addition a number of minor technical changes, corrections and updates to will also be made to the Immigration Rules. These include:
- Making minor changes to ensure there are the necessary requirements for granting discretionary leave to unaccompanied asylum seeking children, and amending the length of discretionary leave granted to these young people to simplify the process and provide some continuity for them;
- clarifying the general visitor rules;
- updating the provisions in Tier 5 for temporary workers;
- minor changes to the Rules on long residence and on work-related settlement; and
- introducing a new protection route recognising stateless persons.
For full details of the changes please see the Statement of Changes to the Immigration rules (HC 1039) which can found on the Home office website. Further information on the Changes to Tier 4 andTier 1 are available on the relevant pages of the UK Border Agency website.