UK’S Points-Based System For EU Applications
Melissa Toney, immigration solicitor and Head of Gregg Latcham’s Regulatory team considers the UK Government’s unveiling of its future immigration plans.
The United Kingdom (UK) exited the European Union (EU) on 31 January 2020. This week the Home Office together with UK’s Visas and Immigration published a policy statement setting out the changes to EU free movement rights. The policy was consulted on by The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) who published its report on salary thresholds and points-based systems on 28 January.
What is the aim of the policy?
To introduce a new system that changes the way all European migrants and dependants come to the UK for work, study, visit or join family.
The policy will seek to bring about consistency with the existing points -based system for Non- EU nationals.
How will it be introduced?
A new Immigration Bill will be issued.
When will this be effective from?
1st January 2021
What will be the effect of the new Immigration Bill?
This is part of a wider ‘year’ of transition, but it’s focus at this stage is two-fold:
- Manage the overall levels of migration; and
- Shift the focus to attract applications from those with the highest skills and the greatest talents: like scientists, engineers, academics and other highly-skilled workers.
What will happen to low skilled/ temporary workers?
The Bill is aimed to encourage UK employers to employ locally for these roles, on the basis that such talent is available. The current data shows the UK unemployment rate is estimated at 3.8% as confirmed by the Office of National Statistics.
Also, the Home Office states almost 3.2 million applications have been made by EU citizens to the Settlement Scheme allowing employers to feel confident that these can continue to meet the existing work market demand.
Concerns for NHS and Health Care Workers?
Provisions are also being brought forward to support NHS, Care Workers, scientists, graduates, agricultural sector, and those within shortage occupation roles. This is not yet in place.
How does this affect you?
As employers who you employ and how you select this talent will require careful consideration to ensure you meet the relevant criteria as sponsors.
For those with companies based in other EU countries these proposals represent significant change for how you continue to support your staff and clients across these borders.
Before you embark on applications you need to ensure you meet the relevant points for that specific role and you would need to ensure you have provisions in place in advance of any application
Whilst there will be a comprehensive programme of communication from the Home Office, you should contact us to discuss any Immigration or compliance issues you may have.