The new points-based immigration system will be operating within the next three months. While the UK Government are releasing bits of information irregularly, the newly published guidance for employers on recruiting foreign workers next year has been welcomed by many.
Commencing 1 January 2021, employers will need to obtain a sponsor licence to hire most non-UK workers.
The new guidance explains the terms for employing non-UK workers, all of which will either go through the Youth Mobility Scheme, the Skilled Worker, the Intra-company Transfer or the Global Talent visa route. (This route is specifically for renowned people in their field of either science, engineering, technology, humanities, the arts.)
In summary, it will be easier for companies to transfer sponsored workers to the UK numerous times. Depending on when the visa expires, companies could avoid the cooling-off period altogether for skilled workers when the new points-based immigration system is in motion.
Many seem to be welcoming this change as currently, people who obtained a Tier 2 visa and returned to their home country had to wait 12 months before they could re-apply for any visa.
In previous years, this transitional wait has caused difficulties for many companies and sponsored non-UK employees.
Although some aspects of this cooling-off period would not differ for people applying for the Intra-company Transfer route, meaning these employees cannot reside in the UK for more than five years (in any six years).
Employees earning more than £73,900 however, can reside in the UK for nine years (in any 10 years).
Currently, workers can apply for a work visa up to three months before their intended start date in the UK, but this could potentially change when the new system comes into place on 1 January 2021.
Therefore, companies should consider organising work visa applications in advance.
According to research, momentarily, only two per cent of firms can hire abroad workers in 2021.