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Britain announces stricter visa norms to reduce migration

Britain announces stricter visa norms to reduce migration

Recently, the UK government unveiled a comprehensive five-point plan that fundamentally alters the nation’s immigration laws. An overview of the main ideas and their consequences is given below.

  1. 1.Minimum Skilled Work Visa Salary Increase:
    • Skilled workers applying for visas must now earn a minimum of £38,700, a 47.7% increase from the previous threshold of £26,200.
    • The government aims to encourage businesses to prioritize British talent and reduce reliance on migration.
    • Health and care workers, as well as those on national pay scales, will have exemptions.
  2. 2.Minimum Income for Family Visas Increase:
    • The minimum income requirement for bringing family members or partners from abroad has increased to £38,700, up from £18,700.
    • Family visas are restricted to British or Irish citizens, individuals with settled or pre-settled status, and refugees with protection status.
  3. 3.Ban on Care Workers Bringing Family Dependents:
    • Overseas care workers will no longer be allowed to bring family dependents (spouse, civil partner, unmarried partner, and children under 18) to the UK.
    • The change aims to address perceived abuse of the health and care visa, with care firms sponsoring visa applications required to be regulated by the Care Quality Commission.
  4. 4.End of Discount on Minimum Salary for Shortage Occupation List:
    • The lower salary requirements (20% less than the going rate) for jobs on the shortage occupation list, designed to attract skilled workers, will be discontinued.
    • The government intends to crack down on cut-price labor from overseas, with a review of the types of jobs on the list.
  5. 5.Review of Graduate Visa Route:
    • The graduate visa route, allowing individuals to stay in the UK for two years after completing a course, will be reviewed to prevent abuse and safeguard the quality of UK higher education.
    • This follows earlier measures to tighten rules on overseas students bringing family members to the UK.
  6. 6.Healthcare Surcharge and Visa Application Fee Increases:
    • The immigration health surcharge, the annual fee visa holders pay for NHS access, will rise by 66% from £624 to £1,035.
    • Visa application fees have already increased, affecting work and visit visas (15%), family visas, settlement, and citizenship (20%), and student visas (35%).

These changes, which are scheduled to take effect in the upcoming months, are intended to prioritise homegrown talent, reshape the immigration landscape of the UK, and address perceived problems with the current system. But they’ve also brought up issues and problems for those affected by the new rules, like families and students.

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