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Immigration Solicitors

Changes to the Immigration Rules (19 July 2018)

Date: 19/07/2018
Duncan Lewis, Immigration Solicitors, Changes to the Immigration Rules

The Government has recently announced the changes to the Immigration Rules affecting a number of categories.

The government aims to provide protection and support to those who are most vulnerable by encouraging highly talented students and workers to the come to the UK. This was recently demonstrated in changes to immigration rules.

One of the most significant changes outlines in the rules is the creation of a new form of leave for children under section 67 of the Immigration Act 2016 (the Dubs amendment). This now means that children who do not qualify for refugee or humanitarian protection will still be able to remain the UK on a long term basis. Under this new rule, those who are eligible will now be able to study, work, access public funds and healthcare and be able to apply for settlement after 5 years without paying a fee.

This change underlines the government’s commitment to fulfil its obligation to the ‘Dubs Children’ through this swift change in legislation.

The rules will also bring into effect the announcement made by the Home Office in May 2018 as Afghan interpreters and their family members who have relocated to the UK can apply for settlement after 5 years of residence. This is estimated to help 1,100 individuals. Additionally, there is plans to expand the ex gratia redundancy scheme to recognise and honour the services of those who were made redundant before 19th December 2012. This will mean that an additional 40 Afghan interpreters and their family members will be eligible to relocate to the UK.

This comes after plans to remove doctors and nurses from the Tier 2 visa cap leading to a number of further changes to UK visa routes. This will include opening up the exceptional talent visa to include leading fashion designers. Those who want to apply through this scheme will have their applications assessed by the British Fashion Council under the endorsement remit of Arts Council England (ACE).

This will also widen the pool to a variety of applicants including TV and film applicants, under ACE, after changes to eligible industry awards and how recently applicants must have won or been nominated for them. This route includes leading talent in fields of science, humanities, engineering, medicine, digital technology or the arts and is open to 2,000 people a year.

The UK is one of the most prestigious places to work and study and offers a world leading education sector, which to make it easier for students to come to the UK to study, the Home Office has expanded the list of countries from which students will be able to benefit from a streamlined application process. Now, students from an additional 11 countries including China will be able to provide a reduced level of documentation when applying for their Tier 4 visa. All students from these countries need to meet the requirements under the Tier 4 regulations however the government still reserves the right to request this evidence in full and will do so on a random selection process.

Immigration Minister Caroline Nokes said:

“Today’s changes show that we are able to adapt to meet the demands of our frontline services and ensure we are able to attract people who can bring real benefits to our creative industries.

"At the same time we are confirming our commitment to those children in need with our ongoing support while demonstrating our recognition for people who have risked their lives by serving with our armed forces.”


Other changes to the rules include a new settlement category for Turkish business people, workers and their families who are in the UK under the EU-Turkey European Communities Association Agreement (ECAA). This will mean that Turkish workers and business people will be able to settle in the UK after five years as either a ECAA business person or ECAA worker (or the equivalent points based system), as long as the most recent case period of leave was under the ECAA.

Additionally, those who hold an Electronic Visa Waiver (EVW) will be able to present their EVW in a digital format for the first time therefore passengers will be permitted to present their EVW in an electronic or printed format to carriers upon departure and arrival to an officer of the Border Force.

Specialist Immigration Director Tamana Aziz’s view:

“This is welcoming news in particular in relation to protecting the rights of children and those in need of international protection.

“Many organisations have called on Home Secretary to adopt a “new approach” to immigration, urging for wide-ranging measures and reverse “inhumane and arbitrary” policies introduced in recent years.

“Sajid Javid plans fairer and more compassionate immigration system and giving evidence to human rights select committee he confirms that he will introduce an immigration system which will allow staff to use common sense as he acknowledged widespread failings within the Home Office”


Tamana Aziz is a Director of Immigration specialising in Business Immigration law under the Points Based System. Recommended in Legal 500 2017 as ‘a great communicator’ and a ‘very committed’ individual in her field, Tamana has developed an expertise in dealing with complex appeals (including deportation appeals and country guidance cases) in the Immigration Tribunals, High Court, Court of Appeal and the Supreme Court.

Tamana advises employers and provides bespoke training on subjects such as compliance with the Home Office’s Prevention of Illegal Working regime and how to use the online sponsorship management system. In addition, Tamana advises high net worth and skilled individuals on extending Tier 2 (General) visas, spousal applications, applications for settlement and British Citizenship. Tamana also has significant experience assisting clients with immigration applications under EU law.

Contact Tamana on 020 3114 1130, or email her at tamanaa@duncanlewis.com.

Duncan Lewis Immigration Solicitors

Duncan Lewis Immigration Solicitors is recognised by Legal 500 2017 for our "strong track record representing SME clients". As one of the UK’s leading firms of immigration specialists we are able to advise on business immigration and right to work in the UK, Tier-2 visa applications and appeals, student and graduate visas, spousal visas and visa overstays.

Our specialist business immigration solicitors will be able to advise businesses and individuals on any changes to UK immigration law during Brexit negotiations and after 29 March 2019, post-Brexit. Our broad practice provides a full service to SME business clients across the UK in relation to the Points Based System (PBS); Sponsorship license applications and immigration strategy/compliance advice.

For expert legal advice on international recruitment and UK business immigration law, call Duncan Lewis business immigration solicitors on 0333 772 0409.


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