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Brexit : Workers moving from EU countries must now get a visa

Insights / / Brexit : Workers moving from EU countries must now get a visa

The Tier 2 visa is replaced by the Skilled Worker visa but pubs, hotels and care homes, still reeling from Covid, could now struggle to fill vacancies.

The Government last week announced details of its new Immigration rules which will apply after Brexit.

From 1 January 2021, EU nationals entering the UK will no longer automatically be allowed to work. Instead, their employer must sponsor them for a work visa, which will require a licence issued by the Home Office. The new rules include a reduction in both the skills level and minimum salary for sponsored jobs, as well as the welcome abolition of the need to advertise a vacancy. They will apply to all workers, whether filling a new role or transferring within a multi-national firm. However, businesses usually reliant on European workers for less skilled jobs, such as bar workers, kitchen staff or care assistants, will find that this source of recruitment will no longer be open to them.

European citizens already living in the UK are allowed to stay without getting a visa. However, they and their families must apply, before 30 June 2021, for status under the EU Settlement Scheme that will allow them to stay in the UK.

Employers without a sponsor licence should seriously consider applying for one now, particularly if they are likely to look outside of the UK to fill skilled roles. Those who already employ EU nationals should ensure that their staff have registered with the Home Office, since the penalties for employing workers illegally are now very severe.

The Immigration Team at Ince are ready to answer your questions about the new system, as well as helping with sponsor licences, work visas and registration for your European workers.

Marta Mendiondo

Marta Mendiondo Head of Immigration

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