Here are a few of the updates that have been implemented or will be rolled out in the coming year. We provide valuable insights into the recent changes in UK immigration requirements, categorized according to visa types. Whether you’re a prospective student, skilled professional, or family member, understanding these updates will help you navigate the application process with confidence.
Categories that is being affected by changes?
Several categories have been affected by changes to UK immigration rules. These changes can impact various groups of people, including:
1. Tier 4 Student Visa
Starting from the beginning of 2024, Student Visa holders will lose the privilege of bringing their dependents to the UK, unless they are enrolled in a qualifying postgraduate program. Additionally, international students will be prohibited from transitioning to a Work Visa until they have finished their studies.
2. Tier 2 Skilled Worker Visa
Professionals seeking employment opportunities in the UK under the Skilled Worker Visa category will face challenges. The minimum salary requirement for a Skilled Worker Visa will be raised from £26,200 to £38,700 annually in April. It’s important to note that this increase won’t affect individuals working in the health and care sector or education roles covered by the national pay scale. Health and Care Worker Visa holders will no longer be able to bring dependents with them to the UK.
3. Family Visa
For those reuniting with family members or joining loved ones in the UK, changes in Family Visas are pivotal to comprehend. The minimum income requirement for Spouse or Family Visas will be gradually raised, starting with an increase from £18,600 to £29,000 in Spring 2024, and ultimately reaching £38,700 in 2025. Importantly, the government has clarified that this higher income requirement will not be applicable to individual’s seeking extensions for their existing Spouse or Family Visas.
4. Investor and Entrepreneur Visas
Investors and entrepreneurs play a crucial role in the UK’s economic landscape. The UK Home Office has not yet announced significant changes for investor visas in 2023.
5. Visitor Visas
As of January 31st, 2024, updated Visitor Visa regulations will be implemented, enabling visa holders to engage in certain work-related activities and perform remote work while staying in the UK. The Shortage Occupation List is set to undergo a revamp, which will involve a reduction in the number of eligible roles and the elimination of the lower qualifying salary rate.
6. The Immigration Healthcare Surcharge, which grants access to the UK’s National Health Service, is scheduled to increase significantly from £624 to £1,035 per year.
7. A comprehensive assessment of the existing Graduate Visa pathway will be conducted in early 2024, and there are indications that this might result in a reduction of the current two-year duration of the visa.
As the UK immigration landscape evolves, staying up to date is paramount for a successful visa application. This guide has provided a detailed overview of recent changes across various visa categories.