There has been a flurry of activity over the last few days in
preparation for the roll-out of the new permanent quota on 6 April
Recent announcements include:
Unrestricted CoS – requesting the annual
The UKBA has now contacted Sponsors to ask them to submit their
estimates of the number of unrestricted CoS they will need for the
year 6 April 2011 to 5 April 2012. Please see the text of the
The request must be filed by 11 March 2011 to
guarantee that the allocation is available for use on or after 6
April 2011 when the quota comes into force;
If the request is not received by 11 March, the Sponsor's
annual allocation will automatically be reset to zero;
Requests will be accepted after 11 March but there is no
guarantee that the allocation will be available for 6 April
rollout. Requests filed after 6 April 2011 must be made via the
Sponsor Management System. There may be a delay before the CoS are
available on line to issue;
Going forward, the annual allocation will run from April
Actions for Sponsors
Every Sponsor must now assess how many Tier 2 (General) and Tier 2
(ICT) CoS it will need.
Unrestricted Tier 2 (General) CoS
This estimate will cover:
All new hires where the salary will be over £150,000 per
All new hires where the candidate is already in the UK as a
Tier 2 (General) or work permit holder which was issued on or
before 5 April 2011;
Any Tier 2 (General) new hire who is already in the UK in
another immigration category where in country switching is
permitted e.g. Tier 1 (Post Study Worker), Tier 1 (General);
Extensions for the same role for the same employer where the
migrant entered as a Tier 2 (General).
Tier 2 (ICT) Unrestricted CoS:
This estimate will cover:
extensions for migrants as Tier 2 (ICTs) for the same role for
the same employer
It is obviously a difficult exercise to project forward
recruitment/staffing needs for the next 12 months. Our advice
is that Sponsors should apply on the basis of the information
currently available on likely recruitment. This estimate may
still be closely aligned with the figures provided for the
last annual allocation applied for under the temporary
quota in June or as part of the annual renewal tied to the Sponsor
Licence. We understand that requests for further
unrestricted CoS will be accepted by the UKBA once an allocation
has been used.
New Fees (28 February)
These fees will apply to all applications made on or after 6
April 2011 and can be found
here. These new figures should be factored into
New Codes of Practice (3 March 2011)
The Migration Advisory Committee ("MAC") has
recommended that 8 job titles be removed from the shortage
occupation list. Shortage occupations are roles which are
recognised as being in acute shortage which do not have to be
The roles to be removed as they will not meet the minimum skills
High integrity pipe welder
Air frame fitters
Site supervisor within the electricity transmission and
Skilled boner and skilled meat trimmer
Skilled senior careworker. This will not affect care home
managers and nurses working in care homes as these are assessed as
graduate level at NQF4
Skilled sheep shearer.
The MAC has also recommended that chef roles on the shortage
occupation list are to be restricted to chef roles requiring a
5 years' experience; and
minimum salary of at least £28,260.
The Government will respond before 6 April. The current
shortage occupation list which will remain in force until 5 April
can be found here.
We understand that new minimum pay levels may be specified in
the Codes of Practice with effect from 6 April with some
significant increases to the minimum pay levels. We will
advise as soon as anything further is published.
In the interim, our advice remains that Sponsors must ensure that
all CoS are issued and applications for entry clearance/grant
of leave are made before 6 April to guarantee not being affected by
the new rules.
This article was written for Law-Now, CMS Cameron
McKenna's free online information service. To register for
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