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UK Immigration Changes In A Post-Brexit Economy

Reasons to choose Wilson Browne

As Secretary of State Priti Patel recently announced there will be new changes to the immigration rules for low skilled workers from 1st January 2021.

She said in an interview with the BBC “Employers should move away from relying on cheap labour from Europe”.

What’s changing?

Under the new rules, a worker who wishes to enter the UK to work will need to obtain at least 70 points to obtain a visa. Points are awarded based on such factors including sponsorship, English language, qualifications and skills, and the level of salary earned.
Where there are shortages in particular industry areas, a higher level of points can be awarded and some points are tradable.

There are a number of steps an organisation should start doing now, these include:

  1. Those organisations who wish to sponsor workers outside the UK will need to apply for a Home Office sponsorship licence if they do not have one already.
  2. Organisations need to check the immigration status of their current EU workforce and advise them to apply, if not already done so for settled status to ensure they can continue to work in the Uk legally.
  3. Organisations that are likely to be affected by these changes are those that rely predominantly on low skilled labour such as in the care and hospitality industries. Such industries will need to give consideration on how they are going to adjust to any shortfall in the workforce, as well any financial implications it has on their business.
  4. Organisations need to ensure that they have processes in place on reporting and keeping records of those who they have sponsored and to plan for an increased cost in their HR administration, processes and procedures.

What about the self-employed?

There is a recognition that a number of businesses rely on workers who are self-employed and as such there will be further Government proposals to consider this.

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