Serge Aurier and visas for footballers after Brexit

What are the immigration rules for footballers from outside the EU? And what rules will apply to footballer transfers from abroad after Brexit? Here we look at the immigration aspects of football transfers using the recent successful but fraught transfer of Serge Aurier from Paris Saint-Germain to Tottenham Hotspur. Aurier is a particularly useful case study for two reasons. Firstly, he is a non-EU national, so he requires a visa to enter and work in the UK. After Brexit, the default position – unless some sort of special exception is made – is that these rules will apply to all footballers, so Aurier is doubly useful in that sense. Secondly, there…

7th September 2017 By Paul Erdunast

Tier 2: is it Brexit ready?

Tier 2 is a fortress. Everything about the UK work permit system is designed to disincentivise employers importing migrant labour from outside of the EU. Like a teacher who has lost control of her class at school and exacts revenge on her own children at home, who are occasionally fed and kept in the basement, the Tier 2 system controls what it can. For the time being, this does not include the number of workers who may enter to work from Europe. At last count, 2.24 million European Economic Area (EEA) nationals are employed in the UK without let or hindrance, with no need to obtain permission from the Home Office…

12th June 2017 By Nick Nason

Court of Appeal finds £22.15 annual shortfall does not qualify as de minimis

The extension application of a Tier 2 skilled worker whose annual salary was found to be £22.15 per year short of the specified requirement was refused. The First-tier and Upper Tribunal allowed her appeal on the basis that the shortfall was so small it should be disregarded under the de minimis principle. The Court of Appeal overturns these decisions on the basis that the rule is a “bright line” one that is either satisfied or not; it was not. The First-tier Tribunal judge may well have resorted to the de minimis principle, as the Upper Tribunal judge said, because of his view that the respondent’s application (though falling marginally short of…

27th May 2016 By Colin Yeo

Calculating annual salary under Tier 2 when paid weekly

Case on calculating annual salary under Tier 2 when the applicant is paid weekly: The effect of paragraph 14 of Appendix J to the Immigration Rules is that other than where an applicant has contracted weekly hours or is paid an hourly rate, the appropriate salary for the purposes of paragraph 79 of Appendix A is an applicant’s gross annual salary paid by the sponsor employer, subject to the conditions set out in paragraphs 79(i)-(iii) of Appendix A. Source: Tukhas (para 245HD(f): “appropriate salary”) Russia [2016] UKUT 183 (IAC) (17 March 2016)

18th April 2016 By Colin Yeo

Migration Advisory Committee proposes tightening of Tier 2 skilled migrant route

The Migration Advisory Commitee (MAC to its friends) has today published its report into how to tighten the Tier 2 skilled migrant route so as to reduce non EU migration. In 2014 there were 52,478 main applicants granted new visas to enter or remain in the UK under Tier 2. Of these, around one third were Tier 2 (General) visas which might potentially lead to settlement and around two thirds were Tier 2 (intra-Company Transfer) visas is a temporary type of visa which does not lead to settlement. Counting all dependants and extension applications for Tier 2 migrants already in the UK, there were 151,659 grants of visas assocated with Tier 2….

19th January 2016 By Colin Yeo

Statement of changes to the Immigration Rules HC535: analysis

Major changes to the Immigration Rules affecting refugees, Tiers 1, 2 and 5, EEA nationals sponsoring family members under the Immigration Rules, visitors, applications for Administrative Review and knowledge of language and life tests are being introduced with effect from tomorrow, 12 November 2015. The changes are wrought by Statement of Changes to the Immigration Rules: HC535. Refugees New cessation policy? It seems that Home Secretary Theresa May’s recent speech to the Conservative Party Conference is to be enacted, at least in part. The Explanatory Notes tell us: The UK has a proud tradition of providing protection to those who need it, for as long as it is needed, in…

11th November 2015 By Colin Yeo

Supreme Court upholds Points Based System sponsor licensing scheme

The Supreme Court has held the Points Based System’s sponsor licensing scheme is lawful. As Nicola Carter observes, sponsors may be disappointed with the result in R (on the application of New London College Ltd) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2013] UKSC 51 but it at least provides welcome clarity for businesses and universities awaiting the outcome. It is also a fatal blow to legal attempts to challenge the Home Office’s policy in recent years of outsourcing immigration control to private businesses, colleges and others (next: landlords) and the judgment includes an unpredictable constitutional sting in the tail for the future.

23rd July 2013 By Colin Yeo

Guest worker era begins

In a slew of new documents published today the Government has heralded the end of quasi-automatic settlement for skilled foreign workers under Tier 2 of the Points Based System, the evisceration of the Overseas Domestic Worker scheme, some tinkering with the Tier 5 temporary worker routes and the creation of yet another visitor category, a ‘permitted paid engagement’, which bypasses the Points Based System altogether. The Ministerial Statement can be found here, the data analysis on which the changes are purported based here, the Statement of Intent here and the summary of findings from the earlier consultation here. From 6 April 2016 a Tier 2 worker seeking settlement will need…

29th February 2012 By Free Movement

Good news for old work permit holders

A new decision from the President of the Immigration and Asylum Chamber of the Upper Tribunal offers relief to work permit holders caught out by a sneaky change to the Immigration Rules in April last year. This topic has been covered here on the blog before, here and here. Before the new dawn of the Points Based System, work permits were issued at a specified salary level for a period of five years. In April 2011, though, a new rule was introduced with no publicity that required work permit holders to be paid at salary levels set out in the labyrinthine Tier 2 salary codes if they were to qualify…

8th February 2012 By Free Movement

English language requirements tightening

In parallel announcements the UK Border Agency has said that language requirements for Tiers 1, 2 and 4 of the Points Based System (highly skilled, skilled and students) are being tightened up slightly. The concession that allowed Tier 1 and 2 applicants to make an in-country immigration application before sitting the language test is being withdrawn. This was introduced so that applicants already in the UK were not caught out by the change to the rules, but is being withdrawn because the requirement is now more common knowledge and tests are easier to arrange now that supply from test providers has caught up with demand. Applicants for extensions under Tiers…

1st February 2012 By Free Movement

Sponsors, paranoia and unfair dismissal

What is the psychological effect upon employers of the increasing stringency of their obligations under the Points Based System? The civil penalties under section 15 of the Immigration and Nationality Act 2006, which, in February of 2008, created the possibility of a £10,000 penalty to be paid by an employer for each person he or she is found to employ who does not have permission to be in the UK, or whose permission does not entitle them to work. Employers are liable for this penalty whether or not they knew that their employee didn’t have the necessary leave to enter or remain in the UK or permission to work. If…

17th December 2011 By Kathryn Bradbury

Watch out old work permit holders…

Back on 6 April 2011 the UK Border Agency made a change to the settlement rules for work permit holders who had entered the UK before the Points Based System was introduced. The change required a work permit holder to be paid a certain salary in order to qualify for settlement, or Indefinite Leave to Remain. The salary required is that specified in the myriad Codes of Practice for Tier 2 of the Points Based System. The problem since faced by many work permit holder seeking settlement after five years of living and working in the UK is that their work permit was approved for one salary, which is what…

2nd November 2011 By Free Movement