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Business Immigration Update: Changes to Tier 2 Intra-Company Transfer (ICT) Route

23 September 2016 #Immigration


Clarkslegal, specialist Immigration lawyers in London, Reading and throughout the Thames Valley.

Following the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC)’s review of the Tier 2 visa route this January, the Home Office announced significant reform to the Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) visa category. These changes are predominately designed to streamline the Tier 2 ICT visa into a single visa category and the changes will be introduced in two stages (Autumn 2016 and April 2017).

Summary of the Changes (Autumn 2016)

The first set of changes are due to take effect this Autumn (most likely with the October rules change) and are as follows:

  • The salary threshold for the Tier 2 (ICT) Short Term route will increase to £30,000;
  • The minimum salary requirement for the Tier 2 (ICT) Graduate Trainee category will be reduced from £24,800 to £23,000 and each multinational company will be permitted to transfer 20 graduates to the UK, rather than 5;
  • The Tier 2 (ICT) Skills Transfer category will close; and
  • All Tier 2 ICT applicants will have to pay the Immigration Health Surcharge (currently £200 per year). 

Comment

There is no doubt that these changes are focused on making it more expensive for employers to sponsor skilled staff. The MAC has indicated that in its view this is the single most effective means of restricting Tier 2 to the most highly skilled and highly paid non-EEA workers.

The Government has promised to simplify the immigration rules and guidance for skilled workers coming to the UK by April 2017 to make the system clearer and more user-friendly for employers and applicants.

Our business immigration team will be providing regular updates on the rule changes and are available to consult with you on how these changes (or the changes due in April 2017) may affect your business. Our business immigration team are also holding seminars in London and Reading next month where they will be discussing upcoming changes to the Tier 2 visa route – please see our Events page for more information or call us.

For further information about this or any other Immigration matter please contact Clarkslegal's immigration team by email at immigration@clarkslegal.com by telephone 020 7539 8000 (London office), 0118 958 5321 (Reading office) or by completing the form on this page.

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Afeefah Shabbir

Afeefah Shabbir
Business Immigration Solicitor

E: AShabbir@clarkslegal.com
T: 0207 539 8009
M: 0777 581 5811

Contact

Immigration team
+44 (0)20 7539 8000