New Visa Fees Come into Force
25 April 2014
Clarkslegal, specialist Immigration lawyers in London, Reading and throughout the Thames Valley.
A number of changes were introduced to the immigration rules on 6 April 2014 (see our previous Buddy blog). Alongside these changes came the yearly increase in fees for visa, immigration and nationality applications and premium services, which also apply from 6 April. As before, the fees vary depending on the type of visa application and whether the application is being made outside or inside the UK.
For employers who employ workers from outside the EEA and pick up the cost of their visa applications, here’s a summary of the key changes:
- There is a new higher fee of £1,028 for applications from outside the UK for a Tier 2 visa (general and long term intra-company transfer)for more than 3 years (£1,202 for applications made inside the UK). The new Immigration Rules provide that skilled workers from outside the EEA and Switzerland can now apply for a 5 year Tier 2 visa (to avoid the need to renew after 3 years) and can then apply for settlement once they have lived here for 5 years.
- There is a new (lower) fee for applicants applying inside and outside the UK for a Tier 2 visa where their role is on the shortage occupation list - £428 for a visa for up to 3 years and £856 for a longer visa.
- The fee for Tier 2 applications made from outside the UK has risen from £494 to £514. The fee for applications inside the UK (renewals and switching) has risen from £578 to £601.
- Fees for dependant applications are now the same as for the main applicant when applying both inside and outside the UK.
- For employers needing to bring staff over quickly from outside the UK, visa decisions can be turned around in 3 to 5 days for £100 using the priority visa service (£300 for settlement applications). There is also a super priority visa service, which can return a decision within 24 hours for £600. There is also a premium service in the UK for an additional £400 (previously £375).
- The fee for assigning a certificate of sponsorship has not changed (still £184 for Tier 2 and £14 for Tier 5). Surprisingly the sponsor licence application and renewal fee has decreased from £1,545 to £1,476!
For a full guide to the new fees see this link.
Given the increasing cost of hiring non-EEA employees, for employers that pay employees’ visa fees it may be worth having a visa fee repayment clause or undertaking in place in order to be able to request the fee in full or in part if the employee resigns within, say, 12 months of joining.
For further information about this or any other Immigration matter please contact Clarkslegal's immigration team by email at firstname.lastname@example.org by telephone 020 7539 8000 (London office), 0118 958 5321 (Reading office) or by completing the form on this page.
Read more articles