From 1 January 2021 free movement will end and the UK will introduce a points-based immigration system.
The new system will treat EU and non-EU citizens equally and transform the way in which all migrants come to the UK to work. Anyone coming to the UK to work, excluding Irish citizens, will need to apply for permission in advance.
The Skilled Worker route and the UK points-based immigration system
The Government has opened the visa application process for people wanting to come to come and work in the UK under the new points-based system, including the Skilled Worker route.
Under the new Skilled Worker route, anyone coming to the UK to work will need to demonstrate that they have a job offer from a Home Office-licensed sponsor at the required skill level – RQF 3 or above (A Level and equivalent). Anyone you hire from outside the UK needs to speak English to the required standard and their job is required to meet the applicable minimum salary threshold.
Licensed sponsors – reminder
If you are planning to recruit from overseas from 1 January 2021, you will need to register as a licensed visa sponsor. You may not be able to legally hire people from outside the UK if you do not have a licence. New employees from outside the UK will also need to meet new job, salary and language requirements. Irish citizens and those eligible under the EU Settlement Scheme are not affected.
Minister writes to professional and business services sector
The Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Alok Sharma, has written a letter to the professional and business services sector about actions they need to take from 1 January 2021.