UK Immigration Rule Changes in April, May, and July 2021

What are the alterations made to the Immigration Rules in the United Kingdom?

On March 4, 2021, the Home Office released its Statement of Changes to the Immigration Rules. Below is a list of some of the most significant substantive changes.

This came after the UK Budget on March 3, 2021, which announced some reforms to immigration.

The creation of a new category of graduate visas

Applications for the new Graduate path will be accepted beginning July 1, 2021. This visa category will allow overseas students who have completed their higher education as a student or as a Tier 4 migrant to apply for a two- or three-year work visa (including self-employment).

Route for Skilled Workers

Pharmacists, Physiotherapists, Nursing auxiliaries and helpers, and Senior care workers are among the eight jobs added to the ‘Shortage Occupation List’ in the health and care sectors.

Skilled chefs will be removed from the ‘Shortage Occupation List,’ while modern foreign language teachers will be added.

Jobs on the ‘Shortage Occupation List’ earn extra points toward the needed minimum of 70 points for this visa category.

Even if the minimum annual salary criterion is met, the minimum hourly wage rate must be at least £10.10. On April 6, 2021, these modifications will take effect.

Global Talent

Applicants who have been awarded a “prestigious prize” will no longer need to seek support from an endorsing organization. The following are examples of prestigious awards (in several categories):

  • Nobel Prize
  • Academy Awards
  • Golden Globes
  • Brit Awards

Bypassing the endorsement stage, an applicant can apply for the visa directly, saving time and money. Some of the modifications will take effect on April 6, 2021, while others will take effect on May 5, 2021.

Additional Future Modifications

Following the UK Budget, we can expect to see the following in the next 12 months:

  • an elite points-based visa by March 2022
  • a review of the Innovator visa by March 2022
  • launch of the new Global Business Mobility visa by spring 2022, for overseas businesses to establish a presence or transfer staff to the UK – this may replace the current Sole Rep visa category.
  • immigration sponsorship system will be modernized


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