The Latest August 2021 UK Visa News and Guidance
A number of events took place on and after 19 July 2021.
Even though the UK government lifted the majority of covid-19 restrictions on that day, the Home Office also extended several concessions.
If you can access a list of all the links mentioned in this article HERE.
Global Talent Covid-19 Concession
Firstly, there will be a concession for the Global Talent applicants. This concession will remain valid until 31 December 2021.
It is regarding the endorsement criteria for scientists researching covid-19.
Global Talent applicants under this concession need to meet the full UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) endorsed funder requirements except that:
- the written confirmation from the endorsed funder confirming that the grant of award covers a minimum period of 1 year instead of the required 2 years
- the employment contract or hosting agreement of the applicant will need to have at least 1 year (instead of 2 years) remaining at the time of the application for endorsement.
The letter from the employer or host institution should also confirm that you are working on a coronavirus related grant and provide the corresponding unique database reference number from the UK Collaborative on Development Research COVID-19 Research Project Tracker or equivalent evidence.
Switching for Global Talent Applicants
Furthermore, successfully endorsed Global talent applicants who are already in the UK, can switch into the route from any category. This temporary concession replaces the standard switching requirements of the Global Talent route.
In all other respects, your Global Talent application will remain the same. If you are endorsed, there will be no difference to the requirements to be granted entry clearance or leave to remain. Any grant of leave you receive will be under the normal Global Talent Immigration Rules. This means if you are endorsed under the concession you may request a 5-year grant of leave and would be eligible for settlement after 3 years.
Concessions for Short-Term Students and Graduate Routes
The Home Office also extended its covid-19 concession for short-term students. They’ve explained this concession in their ‘Covid-19: Guidance for Student sponsors, migrants and Short-term students’.
First of all, they’ve extended the distance learning to 6 April 2022 for the short-term students.
Secondly, the UKVI introduced a new concession and extended the existing one for the Graduate route applicants.
According to the Home Office guidance, the 6 April 2022 deadline will apply to individuals who are studying abroad via distance learning due to the coronavirus pandemic, for:
- 12 months or less, if they commence a course in autumn 2021 or spring 2021
- more than 12 months. Such individuals must be in the UK by 6 April 2022, or before their current immigration permission expires (whichever is sooner)
Student applicants who commenced a course of 12 months or less in 2020 or spring 2021 will need to be in the UK by 27 September 2021, or before their current permission expires (whichever is sooner).
Covid Visa Concession Scheme is Cancelled
Covid Visa Concession Scheme allowed those who are in the UK and are unable to return home due to coronavirus restrictions to make applications to stay in the UK even after their leave (visa) expired. They called them ‘switching’ concessions. From 19 July 2021, they are no longer in force.
Visa Extensions for Health Workers
If you’re a health worker, you may be eligible for a 1-year extension to your visa for free. To qualify, you’ll need to meet two requirements;
- have a visa that expires between 1 April 2021 and 30 September 2021
- work for the NHS or an independent healthcare provider in an eligible profession
Your visa will be extended if you’re a:
|speech and language therapist
Your Family Members
Your spouses and children under 18 can also apply for a 1-year extension to their visas for free.
To qualify, you’ll need to prove that:
- you’re an eligible health worker, and your visa expires between 1 April 2021 and 30 September 2021
- your family member’s visa expires between 1 April 2021 and 30 September 2021
If you’re a health worker with indefinite leave to remain, your family members will not be eligible to extend their visas for free. They’ll need to extend their visas in the usual way.
If you are eligible, you can apply online.
You’ll need to provide:
- a photo of yourself
- a photo of your biometric residence permit (BRP)
If you include a family member in your application, you’ll also need to provide:
- a photo of your family member
- a photo of your family member’s BRP
If you or a family member does not have a BRP, you can provide a photo of their passport ‘biodata page’.
You don’t need to pay the immigration health surcharge (IHS) when you apply.
The Latest August 2021 UK Visa News and Guidance:
From 31 July 2021, you will no longer be able to enrol your biometrics at the Post Office.
They’ve also published Guidance explaining how financial providers can check identity as part of the ‘Know Your Customer’ checks.
Revised EU Settlement Scheme Guidance
This document https://ukvisasuccess.com/news includes the following changes:
- a revised approach to persons exempt from immigration control. Such persons will now be able to apply to the EU Settlement Scheme if they want to. It is despite also being exempt. It’s excellent news, as before they had to wait until they ceased being exempt.
- Also, there were changes to the requirements for family members of a relevant EEA citizen and joining family members of a relevant sponsor, where the relevant EEA citizen or relevant sponsor is a specified relevant person of Northern Ireland.
- And finally, the UKVI announced that there would be a temporary concession for applicants applying as a ‘joining family member of a relevant sponsor’ who entered the UK as a visitor’.
Immigration Detention Bail: Telephone Reporting
Also, there is some excellent news for those on bail and need to attend a reporting centre. Many of you can now do this over the phone.
If you are eligible, the Home Office will send you a Bail201 document. You’ll need to complete it and start the trial. It will last for at least 4 months. After this trial, they’ll move you to a different type of bail restriction.
How to Comply with Telephone Reporting
If you take part in telephone reporting, you’ll receive telephone calls as often as required, according to your Bail 201 form.
You will need to make sure that you can answer those telephone calls personally during the times and dates that you confirmed on your Bail 201 form. However, unfortunately, you cannot authorise any other person (even your legal representative) to answer these calls on your behalf.
The Home Office will call you from “withheld” or “unknown” numbers. And they’ll start by conducting security verification checks during the call. So, you’ll need to have your reference numbers handy.
You’ll be getting text reminders of your next reporting event.
If you cannot comply with telephone reporting requirements during the times or dates allocated, you’ll need to contact your local reporting centre via phone or email.
The Latest August 2021 UK Visa News and Guidance:
New High Potential Individual UK Immigration Route
This new route should make it as simple as possible for those with high potential to come to the UK. This route will be available for those who have graduated from a top global university.
The most exciting part is that there won’t be job offer requirements for those who qualify. This will give the much-needed flexibility to work, switch jobs or employers. The route will allow to settle in the UK if high potential applicants meet the requirements, of course.
New Scale-up UK Immigration Route
Additionally, the UK Government will be introducing the new ‘Scale-up’ UK immigration route.
This route will allow talented applicants with a high skilled job offer from a qualifying scale-up at the required salary level to come to the UK.
There will be a fast-track verification process for scale-ups to use the route. All they’ll need to do is demonstrate an annual average revenue or employment growth rate over 3 years. It should be greater than 20%, and a minimum of 10 employees at the start of the 3-year period. This route will lead to settlement.
And finally, if you would like to understand the UK visa rules, you may find it useful to attend one of these online courses:
- ‘Three Secrets of a Successful UK Visitor Visa Application’
2. ’10 Ways to Avoid the Refusal of Your British Citizenship Application’
3. ‘How to Meet the Financial Requirement of Your British Spouse Visa Application when Applying from Outside the UK’
4. ‘How to Avoid the Refusal of Your Adult Dependent Relative UK Visa Application’
For more online courses, check THIS PAGE.
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