Statement of changes to the UK Immigration Rules

On the 11th of October 2018, Parliament presented the Statement of changes to the UK Immigration Rules, coming into effect in early November 2018.

New settlement scheme for EU citizens residing in the UK after Brexit.

The second phase of EU settled status scheme will begin on 1 November 2018. Staff from UK higher education institutions, health and social care sector will take part in this round of testing. The government plans to publish a report with results of the second phase in December 2018 and fully launch the scheme by 30 March 2019.

New appendix AR (EU) will give citizens of the European Union, residing in the UK, the right for administrative review of their cases where their application for settlement  is refused. The fee for administrative review will be £80. The fee is refunded if the administrative review overturns the decision of the Home Office. Also applicants will be able to add documents that have not been submitted within the initial application. Appendix AR (EU) will take effect on 1 November 2018.

New visa category for Calais refugee children

New visa category for refugee children from Calais camp will be opened on 5 November 2018. After the clearance of Calais camp in France in 2016, the British government decided to move 769 children to its territory in order to protect them from higher risk of violence, abuse and human trafficking. 549 children were reunited with their relatives who already lived in the UK. Nevertheless, some of them did not fall under current Immigration Regulations, and government decided to introduce a new visa category, created specifically for the children of the Calais refugee camp. Such visa will allow the applicant to work, study, have access to public funds and healthcare system and qualify to apply for ILR after 10 years of residency in the country. Visa is granted for a period of five years with potential extension for further 5 years. Such visas could be withdrawn if this category is closed.

Students with dual nationality

Citizens of certain countries (for example, Australia, Malaysia, America, Mexico, New Zealand, Qatar and others) have different documentary requirements when applying for Tier 4 student visa. These applicants are known as low risk nationals and submit fewer supporting documents in comparison to a standard applicant. Previously Tier 4 applicants with several citizenships, one of which is from a country with different documentary requirements, could rely on the citizenship of such a country only if they live on its territory or apply from inside of the UK. The new rules come into force on 1 November 2018 and allow applicants to choose which citizenship they rely on when applying for Tier 4 visa, regardless of their residence country.

Medical exceptions for English and “Life in the UK” tests

From 1 November 2018 applicants who are subjects to English and “Life in the UK” tests exception for medical reasons, must provide proof of their health state from a specific medical professional. This document could not be issued by their primary care provider and should be done in accordance with the official template.

Several changes to the application process under the UK Immigration Rules (except for Appendix EU)

If you request the return service of your passport while your application is still under consideration with the Home Office and you plan to travel outside the Common Travel Area (United Kingdom, Ireland, Channel Islands and the Isle of Man), your initial immigration application will be lapsed. This change come into force from 1 November 2018.

Starting from 1 November 2018 the Home Office will accept copies of supporting documents if the applicant experience considerable difficulty to submit the originals. For example, documents must be obtained in another country.

Further change will come into force on 1 November 2018, where the Home Office caseworker may request the applicant to provide additional information or supporting documents that were not submitted with the original application. Previously, the visa officer could request them only in exceptional circumstance and only once. This amendment will bring flexibility into the actions of Home Office workers when asking for missing documents.

Posted in English on Oct 10, 2018.