Table of Contents

26 October 2023

Carers from Overseas are Subjected to Exploitation

The Gangmasters and Labour Abuse Authority (GLAA) reported that the Health and Care Worker Visa system in the UK is being abused by criminals, which is resulting in allegations of fraud and modern slavery. A GLAA Senior Investigating Officer stated that companies have been set up specifically to exploit overseas Heath care workers: "The sole purpose of these criminals is to use these people as cash cows. They are running businesses at a much-reduced cost because they're not paying them what they're supposed to. They're also charging them excessive fees." In addition, a Home Office Spokesperson said that the Government strongly condemns Offers of employment under false pretences, and Employers engaging in these illegal practices may face prosecution and/or removal from the sponsorship register.

19 September 2023

New Increases in UK Visa Fees, from 04 October

On 4th October 2023, subject to parliamentary approval, new increases in UK visa fees for Immigration and Nationality applications will come into effect. The escalation in fees is intended to fund Public sector pay rises and other critical services. Therefore, from 4 October, a Student visa lodged from outside the UK will increase by £127 to £490, which will be the same as a Student visa application made from within the UK. In addition, a Visitor visa for 6 months stay will rise from £15 to £115, plus there will equally be similar increases in Visa fees for Visitor visas for 2, 5 and 10 years. Note that increases to the Immigration Health Surcharge (IHS) are not included in the latest fee rise, but the IHS fee is still planned to increase in Autumn 2023.

12 September 2023

66% of UK public 'dissatisfied with government’s approach to immigration'

Research reveals that two thirds of the public that were questioned across England, Scotland and Wales are dissatisfied with the way the Government is handling immigration, according to the Immigration Attitudes Tracker Survey. This is the highest level of dissatisfaction since the Brexit vote, in 2015. For 82% of Conservative supporters, the Government was 'not doing enough to stop Channel migrant crossings'. In addition, the Labour party accused the Government of having 'failed to get a grip' on th issue as the milestone of 23,000 crossings, in 2023 was reached.

30 August 2023

UK's Visa options are preventing Foreign Investors

The UK is an attractive location for foreign Investors due to the English language, Education system and access to London financial and other markets. However, there are currently limited Visa options to suppport the move to the UK. The Tier 1 (Investor) Visa was closed in February 2022, and there is no prospect of its re-opening. Therefore, Investors now may apply for just a Visitor visa for a 6 months stay, although regular visits cannot lead to UK Residence. In reality, the Skilled Worker visa is the most viable alternative to the Tier 1 (Investor) scheme for Applicants, which allows the Skilled Worker to be sponsored by a lawful UK organization, which has obtained a License to sponsor foreign workers. However, the Organixation must have a genuine requirement for the job and the Applicant must have the skills and experience required for the role.

9 August 2023

Increase in UK CAS and Student Visa Intake for Autumn 2023

Of the recent 100,000 or so Offers for Study at UK Educational Providers, visa issuances were up 62%, compared to 2022 numbers, and CAS issuances were up 11.4%, plus Course deposits paid also increased by 11.7%. However, statistics reveal that the key markets - India and Nigeria Student enrolments were down slightly. Regarding Nigeria, they have been experiencing economic issues, with the devaluation of their currency. From a positive perspective, Nepal had a large 225% increase in deposits paid, compared to 2022, and CAS Issuances jumped up by 259%.

7 August 2023

Businesses request Government to Re-consider Planned Increase in Skilled Worker Visa Fees

UK Business Groups claim that increasing the Skilled Worker Visa fees will be detrimental to the UK's competitiveness and affect efforts to deal with UK labour shortages. The UK Government's planned increase in Visa fees is to fund public sector pay rises. According to the Government's plan, a Skilled worker visa for 3 years duration would increase from £1,235 to £1,480. In addition, the annual Immigration Health Surcharge would increase 66% to £1,035. Therefore, total expenses to sponsor one Skilled worker is nearly £10,000, excluding the costs for Dependants