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UK Considers Ending Indefinite Immigration Detention

in UK Immigration by
UK Considers Ending Indefinite Immigration Detention

UK Considers Ending Indefinite Immigration Detention

Caroline Nokes, UK’s immigration minister, has informed MPs she is seriously considering calls to nip indefinite immigration detention in the bud.

The UK does not have a cap on its immigration detention and as a result a lot of cases involving detainees being held for months and even years.

During her appearance before the joint committee on human rights, the immigration minister revealed that she is watching the issue of immigration detention time limits very closely. She said her focus is to ensure a detention system that does not just uphold the country’s immigration policies but is also fair to those detained.

Detention Survey

Every year, UK incurs cost in the range of 108 million pounds on about 25,000 new detainees awaiting deportation. High court judges, parliament committees, UN and local authorities have all criticized the Government’s practice of indefinite incarceration.

It has been discovered that more than 50% of detainees are eventually not deported and a good number of them have taken legal action against the country for their detention. According to a report by Home Office, three million pounds was paid by the Government to 118 people in the 2017/2018 fiscal year on the ground of unlawful detention.

A survey that involved about 200 detainees across seven different deportation centers in England revealed that more than half (about 56%) were categorized as an adult at risk, who are only supposed to be held in cases considered extreme. This result suggests breaching of Home Office guidelines on detention.

The same survey revealed that 84% are on open-ended detention – have not been told when they will be deported. About 50% of the detainees did not commit any crime, many of whom have been detained for four months on the average.

Minister Nokes appeared before the joint committee on human rights after a bill to impose a 28-day statutory limit on immigration detention received cross-party support when tabled by Labour MP Tulip Siddiq.

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UK to make changes to Immigration Laws

in UK Immigration by

UK to make changes to immigration laws

Academic staff visa for UK universities is expected to experience significant changes in the following months according to governmental plans. This will, in turn, elicit different reactions across UK universities including a possible sharp upsurge in academic staff visas applications. Some of the planned changes are increase to the Immigration Health Surcharge and extension of the settled status scheme put in place for EU nationals.

100% increase in Immigration Health Surcharge

An annual £200 for immigration health surcharge is imposed on all Tier 2 sponsored employees. This applies to both primary applicant and all their dependents (e.g., families). This surcharge gives applicants, as well as their dependents, access to NHS service like any other UK citizen. From December 2018 (if approved by parliament), a hundred percent increase has been declared by the government implying that immigration health surcharge will cost £400 annually for workers while that for students will also double from £150 – £300.

This represents a substantial increase in cost for both employees and students, particularly for those with many family members. Universities across the UK must move quickly to take advantage of this little window to finalize as many as possible academic staff visas before the approval and endorsement of the new law.

Settled status pilot extension

The settled status pilot is made for EU nationals who want to remain in the UK post-Brexit. Employees who work for either UK Higher Education Institution (HEI) or the UK based overseas HEI are eligible to apply from 15 November 2018. This is excellent news for people who have concerns for post Brexit status. Application for settled status under the new laws will be for:

  1. Resident citizen of EU who has a valid passport or
  2. Non-citizen of EU (with biometric residence card) who is the family member of an EU citizen

The employee is equally required to either own or has access to an Android device to enable him/her use a Home Office in the process of application.

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UK Has Major Skills Shortage in Engineering and Medical Sector

in UK Immigration by

United Kingdom’s engineering and medical sector is suffering from a significant skills shortage, and it is only getting worse because of tier 2 visa system’s monthly and yearly caps. According to a research conducted in January 2018, the United Kingdom has a domestic labor shortage of 20,000 engineering professionals, which can only be filled up by foreign-born highly skilled workers. After Great Britain exited from European Union, the country saw a decrease in EU workers, one of the reasons why there’s an increase in tier 2 visa applications.

Engineering UK reported that the country will see a shortage of more than 180,000 engineering professionals by 2020. It is a growing cause of concern among migrants in the United Kingdom as they are choosing to find employment in some other country. Every year the British government publishes the United Kingdom Shortage Occupation List that contains occupations that are short staffed. While the list contains hundreds of occupations, 53 of them are engineering occupations. Some of the top short staffed engineering jobs are an automotive engineer, a chemical engineer, control and instruct engineer, geotechnical, integrated circuit test, mechanical, power system, and product design engineer.

How does the tier 2 visa work?

Before hiring a non-European Union skilled worker, the British employer needs to advertise the job opening for a minimum of 28 days in European Economic Area and the United Kingdom. The tier 2 visa lasts for up to three years, and if the skilled migrant worker applies for a job from the Shortage Occupation List, you get a discount on the application fee. If the person continues to work at the same firm, he will get the visa extended by two years.

If EU workers want to work in the UK, they need to obtain the EEA Residence Card that allows them to switch employers while working in the United Kingdom.


Huge increase in immigrants to the UK

in Featured/Immigration/UK Immigration/Visas/World Visa News by

Huge increase in immigrants to the UK According to the recent statistical reports revealed by the The government OF United Kingdom, the number of immigrants in the country reached as high as 650,000 when the Home Secretary was Theresa May last year, which broke all the records of previous years. Most of the immigrants are arriving from both the EU and non-EU countries before the referendum for Brexit was held. UK welcomed approximately 284,000 EU nationals before the referendum was held in June.

The government claimed that the rise in immigration levels was due to the EU laws for liberal movement. Previously, around 289,000 non-EU nationals were deprived of any such rights. This sudden increase in the number of immigrant numbers has now raised several doubts over the decrease in immigrant numbers that was previously claimed by the Brexit champions.

During the tenure of Theresa May total immigration figures reached at 335,000. These latest report revealed by the National statistics office have made the government to frame a target of reducing the number of immigration by tens of thousands.

The chief of the National Office for Statistics, Nicola White explains that the latest information on immigration revealed that the number is at an all time high levels. Particularly  the strength of EU nationals was at an utmost level which was a record set historically.

Last year the highest numbers of immigrants mainly were origins of Romania. The second highest number of immigrants were from China with 44,000 migrants and the third highest were from Poland with 38,000.Indian immigrants were around 36,000. However, out of 189,000 of European nationals who arrived in the UK, only 108,000 had an offer of employment with them.

The chief executive of the Joint Council for the Welfare of Immigrants’, Saira Grant  blames the UK government of forming such policies that would actually make it extremely tough for the immigrants to survive.

Visa procedure for Malaysian travelers hastened by UK

in Featured/Immigration/UK Immigration/Visas/World Visa News by

Visa procedure for Malaysian travelers hastened by UKUK Home Office declared that Malaysians heading to the UK will now be able to make an application for the Registered Traveler Service of the United Kingdom. The Rakyat Post quotes that British High Commission has declared that  the travelers from Malaysia are now permitted to use the service to get a hastened clearance via the UK immigration.

Approved citizens will get a faster entry at the British border via  the ePassport gates (for those holding an ePassport) or the United Kingdom /European Union passport lane so additional landing card is not required for them.

The British high commissioner, Vicki Treadell said to Malaysia, that 176,000 visitors from Malaysia entered the UK in 2015 which is a rise of 12 percent from the previous year. Southeast Asian country’s citizens will now savor all the treats Britain offers due to the hastened entry at the UK border.

The Registered Traveler Service gives hastened clearance via the UK border only to the sanctioned members whose advanced security procedure has taken place. This service will be made available from 21 November to Malaysian travelers.

Robert Goodwill, who is the migration minister of the United Kingdom is glad that their country welcomes new  business and also expressed his excitement  to share the benefits with Malaysian travelers. Adding that the scheme was also available to many other countries, he said that he was happy to welcome Malaysia to the community of Registered Traveler.

Eligible for this scheme are those Malaysian travelers, who have a valid passport, either possess a visa or entry clearance or have travelled to Britain a minimum of 4-time in last two years. The applicant  will receive a provisional letter of acceptance after the application is approved by the authorities followed by the important and detailed background checks.

The membership is confirmed and certified only if the applicants present themselves to the designated officer when they  land in the UK where their membership procedure would be finalized.

UK changes visa rules for non EU citizens

in Featured/Immigration/UK Immigration/Visas/World Visa News by

UK changes visa rules for non EU citizensThe British government has declared few changes in visa rules for citizens of non-European countries which were effective from 24 November. The new rules and regulations are expected to affect a lot of Indians and workers working in the field of technology. The UK Home Office quoted that the first two revisions to Tier 2 in March after a review by the Migration Advisory Committee will impact applications made from 24 November onwards.

The latest rules announced by the UK Home Office, expects applicants of Tier2 ICT (intra-company transfer) category to have a salary of at least £30,000 per year which is an increase from the earlier income requirement of £20,800 per year. The Indian technological companies in the United Kingdom often refers to the ICT and according to the findings of Migration Advisory Committee of United Kingdom in early 2016, nearly 90 percent of Information technology workers from India made up to visas issued under this category.

Additionally , the Tier 2 (General) salary threshold has hiked for experienced workers to £25,000.Also the Tier 2 (ICT) graduate trainee earning salary threshold has been fallen to £23,000 and the number of places has raised to 20 per company every year.The skills transfer sub-category of Tier 2 (ICT)  has been closed.

Reportedly the non-EU nationals including the Indians will also be affected by the latest rule announced by the UK government. Owing to the new English language requirements when the applicant applies for the settlement as a family following two and a half years of stay in Britain on a five year path to residential  settlement in the country. The new rule would be applicable to both partners and parents of applicants whose current leave to remain in Britain under the family immigration rules will be expiring from 1 May 2017 onward. The applicants are expected to follow the latest rules to apply for visa.


Prospects for increased visas for Indians in the UK

in UK Immigration/Visas by

Prospects For Increased Visas For Indians In The UkTheresa May, Prime Minister of UK has given indication that Indian Visas may get increased if the Indian Government support them on the issue of migrants staying more than the period of their visa. It should be taken into account that the Indian Student Fraternity has been facing a lot of problem regarding the processing of their visas to the UK. Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has urged the British Government to take immediate actions for the immigration of Indian students to the UK.

In the Business Leaders Summit held in New Delhi, UK industrialist Sir James Dyson has favored and backed the smoother visa process of Indian visas to UK. British Premier’s visit to India for three days also concentrated on the same issue. Easy policies for bilateral trade between these countries post Brexit policy was also the focus of this visit.

Theresa May, however, assured that nine out of ten Indian students are being approved for the UK visa. India demanded for the lessening of eligibility criteria and rise in number of visas approved. Britain also agreed on cost deduction which will surely ensure the increased number of visa processing for the UK.

In return of these favors, India would have to help UK for the return of Indians who do not have legal Visas. Indian PM Narendra Modi revealed that the current visa policy of UK resulted in 50% decrease of Indian students approaching the UK.

Chief of Cobra beer, Lord Bilimora has also demanded of multiple entry visa of less than £100 should be extended to Indians too. Sir James also informed that it would reflect in the shortage of engineers in UK by almost one million. UK has only one third of the engineers which means there is a huge transformation required for the Visa policies, and make the visa process even more amiable for students from India to attract better talents.

Tier 2 visa opportunities for students in UK

in Featured/Student Visa News/UK Immigration by

Tier 2 visa opportunities for students in UKUK immigration has unveiled an all-new tier four visa pilot program for a duration of 2 years recently. This program will pave the way for non-European scholars who are pursuing Masters degree program for thirteen months or less from 4 best universities in the United Kingdom to stay back in the nation. They can stay for a maximum of 6 months once they have successfully completed the master’s degree. This would let them to get hold of good job opportunities in the United Kingdom through the visa scheme. The government has put forth this plan for the best 4 universities in the United Kingdom as the visa refusal level is too low for these universities. It is expected that this scheme if successfully implemented could speed up the process of applying for tier 4 visa.

The students from the following universities alone can be part of this scheme – Imperial college, London University of Bath, University of California and University of Cambridge.

A spokesperson from the Home Office stated that: “Individuals who wish to learn at the finest educational organizations in the United Kingdom have the most favorable opportunities now. This prudently envisaged visa program will make sure that the universities are reliably competitive and capable to entice the smartest and finest scholars across the globe.” She further states that all of the scholars who are partaking in this program has to meet all the standards as per the immigration rules established by the United Kingdom Home Office. All of the scholars need to meet suitable security and identity checks. Any request that doesn’t meet these immigration rules would be declined.

It is expected that the Home Office will carefully scrutinize this visa pilot program during 2- year period. The government would also perform an official assessment of the Tier four program once it gets to its conclusion. This would help to make any tweaks in the program if needed.

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