Tier 1 General
STOP PRESS: Note that the points based system changed dramatically on 6th April 2010, with many new opportunities. Please contact our leading immigration lawyers for the latest specialist advice.
As is well known, the United Kingdom benefits greatly from the contribution that foreign national workers make whilst they are here. Equally the immigration categories for those working, or undertaking business in the United Kingdom provide opportunities to earn substantial sums in the United Kingdom, to have dependents and other family members enter the United Kingdom and to eventually move to settlement and citizenship.
During 2008 and 2009, the immigration authorities are introducing a new points-based system. This system replaces most of the existing work-based immigration categories. Categories such as the HSMP, Innovators and International Graduate Scheme programs have now all ended. They all however have similar replacements under the new immigration categories. Our experienced and focused immigration lawyers can advise individuals and businesses on not just the law, but the latest and proposed changes to immigration work provisions.
Tier 1 Workers
The most favoured group under the new immigration points based system are those that form Tier 1. There are currently 4 immigration categories under Tier 1:
- Highly skilled workers,
- Investors, and
- Post study workers (see our guidance video on Post Study Work below)
The main advantage of Tier 1 over other immigration categories is that you do not need a pre-existing specific offer of a job. Like other immigration categories, you will need to pass a points based assessment first. Given the favoured status of Tier 1 over other immigration categories, the assessment requires more that lower tiers.
Highly Skilled Workers
Since 2002 and the introduction by the immigration authorities of the HSMP scheme, the UK has been active in its encouragement of skilled migrants to travel, work and settle in the country. The HSMP programme has now been replaced by the Highly Skilled Worker immigration category, also known as the Tier 1 (General) category.
The Highly Skilled Worker immigration category has a number of similarities to the previous HSMP. The most striking exception is that the removal of the MBA provision. This assumed that those who had an MBA from certain institutions were instantly given 75 points under the old immigration category. There is also a tightening up of the English language requirements. Those who are under the HSMP immigration category are being encouraged to switch over to the new Tier 1 category, which is something our experienced immigration lawyers can assist with.
Those who wish to apply under this immigration category will need to score points for:
- Previous Earnings
- UK Experience
- English Language ability
Amongst London immigration solicitors and barristers, our specialist immigration lawyers will be able to assist with these requirements but also with extending your time in the United Kingdom, and if required, advising on routes to settlement and citizenship.
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