Tier 4 – New Rules

As expected, some more changes has been announced and rules relating to students` entry clearance / leave to remain applications which we have summarized as follows:

1.    From 23rd of July 2010, due to the successful legal challenges, the requirement of having funds maintained for a particular period of time before the date of application has now been incorporated in the immigration rules, thus making it a rule enforceable in law. The Court of appeal has recently held in Pankina case that the requisite of having the funds maintained for a particular period of time is not a necessary requirement as this had not been approved by the parliament. But now as it has been brought into the immigration rules, it has got the legal force and this is still a necessary requirement, despite the Pankina Case.

2.    From 23rd of July 2010, the students who wish to come to the UK or remain in the UK to study English language, can only take a course of English language that is at the minimum level of  B1.

3.    All those students who have applied for Tier 4 visa after 05th of Oct. 2009 and were given visas , are required to make a new application if they wish to move to a different education provider. They are not allowed to commence their studies before they get positive decision from the UKBA. From 23rd of July 2010, those students who wish to change their sponsor to study with an education provider which has got Highly Trusted Status, would be able to commence studying with the new sponsor before they receive the decision of their application. This is the only exception. Those who want to study with an education provided having A or B status, would still not be allowed to commence their studies before their visa applications are approved.

4.    From 12th of Aug. 2010, all student visa applications, whether it be entry clearance or leave to remain, must be accompanied with a UKBA approved English language test having achieved at least CEFR level B1 in All four components (reading, writing, speaking and listening),  unless:

a.    The student is studying a course that is above NVQ level 6

b.    The student is doing an English language course

c.    The student is doing a foundation degree course

d.    The student is a national of a majority English speaking country i.e. Antigua and Barbuda or Australia or The Bahamas or Barbados or Belize or Canada or Dominica or Grenada or Guyana or Jamaica or New Zealand or St. Kitts and Nevis or St. Lucia or St. Vincent and the Grenadines or Trinidad and Tobago or the USA.

e.    The student has successfully completed a course as a Tier 4 (child) student (or under the student rules that were in force before 31st of March 2009, if they were granted permission to stay while they were under 18 years of age) which lasted at least 6 months and ended no more than 2 years before the date when the CAS is assigned.

5.    Those students who have not received the paper transcript of their International Baccalaureate qualifications (awarded on 05 July 2010), will be able to make their visa applications without submitting the original awards.

This is just a beginning and further restrictions on Tier 4 applications or other visa categories are on the way and the applicants should now get ready to hear the worst.

We are ideally placed to advise and represent our clients in respect of their immigration matter and would like to hear from the prospective applicants who wish to come to the UK or wish to extend their leaves to remain in the UK.

Posted in English on Jul 25, 2010.