UK Immigration Updates For September 2022
From 12 August UKVI resumed Priority Visa (PV) and Super Priority Visa (SPV) services in existing locations for new study and most work visa applications, which also includes global talent. The SPV service is not open for customers utilizing the UK Immigration: ID Check app, but the PV service is now accessible.
It is impossible to upgrade to the PV and SPV services if the application was filed prior to 12 August 2022. It is feasible to pull back an ongoing pending application and re-file it using PV or SPV services where these are available.
It is crucial to keep in mind that not all Visa Application Center locations have access to these speedy services and some countries still do not provide them. Therefore, it is essential to check on the commercial partner website whether the Visa Application Center you plan to attend provides PV and SPV services.
UK Visa Processing Duration Updates
The customer service standard on standard visa processing times for applications from outside the UK is usually 3 weeks. Presently, the time for processing is taking longer than the standard. The timelines reported by the UKVI are:
- Visit visas, on average, take 7 weeks. This was previously an average of 6
- Work visas are taking 4 weeks on This was previously an average of 5 weeks.
- Currently, the standard Student visa is within the normal service standard of 3
- Applications for family visas is still at 24
The processing duration may change on a weekly basis, so keep an eye out for updates by checking the Visa decision waiting times.
Police Registration Requirement Suspended
On 4 August 2022, the UK Government announced the elimination of the Police Registration Scheme. The scheme, which needs a few migrants to register with the police, is suspended and is effective immediately. Practically, the UK Immigration Rules need to be modified to reflect the change and per the UKVI, the necessary changes to eliminate the scheme are taking place in the background. Though the legal condition to register with the police is still in law, the general understanding is that the relevant legislation will be abolished in due time and will not be implemented in the meantime.
UKVI took the decision to abolish the condition to register with the police because the police registration scheme is presently obsolete in its current form and no longer offers any public protection benefit to the police or the Home Office. The data a candidate provides to the police on registration is already obtained by the Home Office at the visa application phase and is available to the police on request through Immigration Enforcement, which is why there is no need for it to be provided twice separately.
Individuals who have been awarded a UK visa with the condition to register on it do not have to go to a police station to register. The Home Office itself states that there is no reason to keep a police registration certificate or show it as proof in any future visa application. Any present visas or Biometric Residence Permits that include the requirement don’t need to be updated and the condition will not appear on any new visas or Biometric Residence Permits. Any paid and booked appointments will be cancelled and fees will not be reimbursed. Anyone who was unable to register prior to 4 August 2022, will no longer be expected to do so.
The Launch Of Scale-Up Visa
On 22 August 2022, a much-anticipated Scale-up visa was made public and open for applications. Firstly, the company’s employer should apply for a Scale-up sponsor licence.
To be eligible for a Scale-up, the company employing will need to show annual growth in either revenue or staffing of at least 20% for the previous three-year period and that they had at least 10 employees at the start of the period. The Home Office aims to use PAYE data from HMRC to establish if the company fulfills these requirements. The potential sponsors must have a minimum of 37 months of uninterrupted history with HMRC. If the company does not fulfill the employment growth criteria, the Home Office will see whether you fulfill the turnover growth criteria. If there are deficiencies in the company’s HMRC records, the check will most probably fail.
Once the licence is accepted, an applicable employee can be provided a Certificate of Sponsorship and apply for a UK Scale-up visa to work for them in the UK. The visa permits the employee to come to the UK for 2 years and it can be extended for an additional 3 years if the person meets the extension standards. The employee should work for their sponsor for a minimum of 6 months, after which they can leave the company. There is no requirement to notify the UKVI of the change or to update your visa. The pathway results in settlement after 5 years of residence in the UK, depending on the minimum salary requirements and other criteria.
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