New Immigration Scheme & Small Business

Your business and the new immigration points system

The new immigration points system based on what is an Australian Style is to be introduced it has now been announced by the Home Secretary Priti Patel.

This subject was big on the agenda during Brexit and the announcement of the new system is on the back of plans which were laid out in the Conservative Party manifesto in 2019.

 

What is all the fuss about

 

For businesses repercussions will be felt especially ones who employ low-skilled workers such as in construction, hospitality, retail and social care, these areas in my opinion the government are potentially being critical of the skill base perhaps??

The government views it as ‘taking control of British borders’, in replace of hiring low-salaried workers from Europe, instead encouraging training initiatives in business, automation and retention.

 

When does the new system go live

 

On 1 January 2021 the Brexit transition period of free movement ends, the new points system will be applied from that date. Any EU nationals arriving to the UK prior to this date will need to apply to the EU settlement scheme by 30 June 2021-  it is important the deadline is noted for these  applications.

 

What is the new scheme

Many small business owners quite rightly have questions at the moment and will do for some time to come, here’s what we know so far:

 

  • This Australian Style points-based system will be introduced – the points will be awarded for specific skills, professions, qualifications, attributes and salary. The visa will be granted where the applicants are able to meet the points required. Applicants will be able to transfer points to meet requirements and make the required totals.
  • A minimum of 70 points will be required. (10 points are awarded for speaking English)
  • The threshold for education will be A-Level, higher secondary school certificate or equivalent.
  • There will be a salary threshold of £25.600, there will be an exception to this where a shortage of occupations exists (Nursing, Engineering and Education), the threshold will be £20.480
  • For highly skilled individuals such as Mathematicians, Skilled Scientists and Researchers there will be a scheme called a fast track Global Talent
  • 10k Seasonal Agricultural workers will be provided access to a pilot scheme

 

What do you need to do to prepare

 

It may seem a long time away, but it will fly by, planning ahead with recruitment is a good idea.

Take time to consider recruitment strategies now, non – UK nationals may take longer to onboard due to the new visa requirements, ensure you consider additional sponsorship costs, these may be additional.

 

The new system will not apply to non-British nationals who may be employed by you, remember they will need to apply to the EU settlement scheme, once this is done you will not have to repeat the check.

You can can signpost your workers to gov.uk/eusettlementscheme for the latest advice and up to date advice.

 

The intricacies of HR and Employment Law can be complex at times, if you need any assistance please do contact us, we are experts in our field, use our contact us page on our website and we will get back to you straight away.

 

Author Fran Crossland

23 February 2020

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