The UK Government made some unexpected immigration rule announcements early in December 2018
Innovator Immigration Route will replace Tier 1 Entrepreneur
The new Innovator immigration route will replace the Tier 1 Entrepreneur route. This immigration route will be open to more experienced business persons.
The Home Office said that it would have a “similar emphasis on endorsement by a business sponsor, who will assess applicants’ business ideas for their innovation, viability, and scalability.”
Our advice to those who still want to apply under the current Tier 1 Entrepreneur route, is to contact your immigration lawyer / consultants without delay.
A new Start-up Visa route
The UK Government announced earlier in 2018 that it will establish a new Start-up visa route. This route will build upon the successes of the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur route. A business or higher education institution sponsor have to endorse persons who apply under this new start-up visa route.
We expect a further announcement on this route early in 2019.
Suspended or not? Tier 1 Investor Route
On 6 December 2018, the Immigration Minister, Caroline Nokes announced that the Tier 1 Investor route is suspended. She said that the Investor route will from 7 December 2018 no longer be open for applicants to apply and that new rules will be put in place sometime during 2019.
However, the Home Office has since released an official statement to the Immigration Law Practitioners’ Association (ILPA) stating the following;
“The Tier 1 (Investor) visa is not currently suspended. However, the Government remains committed to reforming the route. A further announcement will be made in due course. Any suspension would be implemented through changes to the Immigration Rules.”
Architects can apply under Tier 1 Exceptional Talent
The Home Office said that the Tier 1 Exceptional Talent route would be expanded to provide for the inclusion of leading architects. Architects will have to be endorsed by the Royal Institute of British Architects, under the remit of the Arts Council England.
Religious Workers and Charity Workers under Tier 5
Tier 5 Religious Workers and Tier 5 Charity Workers will in future be subject to a cooling off period. This means that they will be prevented from returning to the UK for 12 months, on another Tier 5 visa, after the expiry of their Tier 5 visa. The Home Office said that they are taking this step to underpin the fact that this is a temporary route.
Seasonal Worker Pilot Scheme for Non-EU workers
The UK Government will in 2019 launch a two-year seasonal worker pilot scheme. This scheme will aim to bring 2,500 seasonal workers to farms in the UK, to alleviate labour shortages in this sector.
The pilot scheme will allow non-EEA workers to do seasonal work on UK farms for up to six months. The UK Government said that they have now chosen the organisation to fill the role of scheme operators. The date of implementation is still to be announced.
Please note that the information in this article does not constitute professional advice. It is provided for general information purposes, without giving any warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied.