Changes to the UK Immigration Rules for Tier 2 visa Sponsors

Tier 2 visa sponsorsChanges to Tier 2 visa sponsors:

Recent changes to the Tier 2 visa which became effective in November 2014 have placed new Sponsor Licence applications and Tier 2 applications under scrutiny by the Home Office. The major change in regards to Tier 2 is the introduction of a ‘genuineness’ test.

Under Part 6A and Appendix A of these Rules, a “genuine vacancy” is a vacancy which exists in practice (or would exist in practice were it not filled by the applicant) for a position which:

(a) requires the jobholder to undertake the specific duties and responsibilities, for the weekly hours and length of the period of engagement, described by the Sponsor in the Certificate of Sponsorship relating to the applicant; and

(b) does not include dissimilar and/or unequally skilled duties such that the Standard Occupational Classification (SOC) code used by the Sponsor as stated in the Certificate of Sponsorship relating to the applicant is inappropriate.”

81H. No points will be awarded for a Certificate of Sponsorship if the Secretary of State has reasonable grounds to believe that:

(a) the job described in the application is not a genuine vacancy, or

(b) the stated requirements of the job described in the application and in any advertisements for the job are inappropriate for the job on offer and / or have been tailored to exclude resident workers from being recruited.

The Statement of Changes specifies that Entry Clearance Officers and caseworkers will now be able to refuse Tier 2 applications where there are realistic grounds to believe that the position does not genuinely exists or has been exaggerated to meet the Tier 2 skills threshold (currently NQF level 6). Moreover, they may also refuse applications if they feel the migrant is not qualified to do the job or that the position has been tailored to exclude resident workers from being employed.

Tier 2 ICT applications will also need to meet the new ‘genuine’ test where migrants will need to prove that the vacancy recorded on the CoS is indeed genuine, as applications may now be rejected where grounds exist to believe otherwise. Entry Clearance Officers will also now be able to refuse applications where they feel that the applicant is not correctly qualified to do the job.  Consequently, sponsors will need to ensure that the need for the assignee to work in the UK is entirely justified and for the good of the business.

The above changes have meant that the Home Office require a lot more information and documents, to grant a Sponsor Licence and any new Certificates of Sponsorship requests, making the processes, much more time consuming and difficult.

If you are having difficulties with any Sponsor Licence application or your Tier 2 visa application or have any immigration matter you need assistance with, please give us a call on 01793836010 or email: enquiries@permits2work.com