Clarkslegal LLP - Solicitors in Reading and London

Legal Updates

UK Immigration from 2021: Summary of key changes

28 August 2020 #Immigration

The UK immigration system will face its most significant change in recent history from 1 January 2021. The changes will impact most sectors in the UK. In this blog we have a brief look at the key changes to expect.

  1. EU nationals

All EU nationals who enter the UK after 1 January 2021, and have not previously lived in the UK, will require a valid visa to live, work and study in the UK. The visa application process is expected to have a reduced biometric enrolment requirement.

  1. The EU Settlement Scheme

The EU Settlement Scheme will close to new entrants (after 1 January 2021). Those already in the UK can continue to apply under June 2021. Family members of EU nationals who obtain a status by this date, can be joined by existing close family members until March 2022.

  1. The new immigration system

The new immigration system is expected to launch from January 2021 covering all non-UK nationals (including EU nationals).  Major changes include a change to the current Tier 2 visa category (to be renamed skilled worker route).

Further changes will include a post-study work visa for students who are in the UK from April 2021.

Employers should also expect a revamped Right to Work checking system, with an emphasis on online status checks for non-UK nationals.

  1. Irish nationals

The rights of Irish nationals will remain the same post-January 2021. This means that they will be able to continue to live, work or study in the UK without requiring additional immigration permission. They are able to use their Irish passport as valid proof of stay.

While not mandatory, Irish citizens, and their family members, are also able to apply under the EU Settlement Scheme. The scheme provides for an easier route for family members to join main applicants in the UK.

Clarkslegal Immigration Support

The Clarkslegal Immigration Team has continued support businesses and individuals in understanding and preparing for the new immigration system.

This includes providing briefing notes, webinars, seminars and training to relevant team members.

If you require such support, please contact our immigration team at

Clarkslegal, specialist Immigration lawyers in London, Reading and throughout the Thames Valley.
For further information about this or any other Immigration matter please contact Clarkslegal's immigration team by email at by telephone 020 7539 8000 (London office), 0118 958 5321 (Reading office) or by completing the form on this page.
This information is for guidance purposes only and should not be regarded as a substitute for taking legal advice. Please refer to the full General Notices on our website.

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Immigration team
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