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UK Work Visas: Rules 'Firm But Fair'

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Henry Porter recently criticised border security as "nasty and absurd" and surmised "there is clearly some kind of campaign against poets with strange sounding names and of Muslim origin."  This week,  Immigration Minister Phil Woolas described the criticism as "at best naive, and at worst designed to deliberately misinform people."  " rules are designed to be firm but fair [and] they apply to everyone regardless of race, gender, age, or background," he added.

On 29 February 2008, the UK introduced a new points-based "to ensure only those with the right skills or the right contribution can come to the UK to work or study." 

The system has three key elements:

  • It combines more than 80 previous work and study routes to the UK into five tiers.

  • Points are awarded according to workers' & students' attributes, to reflect their aptitude, experience and age and also the demand for those skills in any given sector.

  • Increased transparency allows potential migrants to assess the likelihood of a successful application, which should reduce the number of failed applications.

The Five Tiers of the Points-Based System

  • Tier 1 - Highly skilled workers, investors, and entrepreneurs
  • Tier 2 - Skilled workers with a job offer, to fill gaps in the UK workforce.
  • Tier 3 - (currently suspended) - Low-skilled workers to fill temporary labour shortages.
  • Tier 4 - Students.
  • Tier 5 - Youth mobility and temporary workers allowed to work in the UK for a limited period to satisfy primarily non-economic objectives.
  • Additional Information & Advice

    You can obtain additional information about uk work visas and immigration on .

    Depending on your circumstances, however, you may want to speak with a solicitor who specialises in law.  You can be in your area for free via solicitor matching services, which can also help you to understand the best course of action and whether you are ready to hire a solicitor.

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