Hadi Law

UK Government Five Point Immigration Plan

On 4 December 2023, the UK Home Secretary. James Cleverly announced a five-point plan to reduce the number of migrants entering the country. The plan has been highly controversial, as, like most other nations, the UK desperately needs migrants to plug the gap in certain market sectors. These changes mean that, more than ever, migrants wanting to come to the UK to work, join their spouse or civil partner, or apply for settlement , must instruct an experienced Immigration Law Solicitor to assist them with their application.

Why was the five-point plan announced?

In November 2023, the Office of National Statistics (ONS) released new immigration figures which showed net migration was a record 745,000. The current Conservative Government, which has been in power for the past 13 years, has made several promises to reduce net migration but instead, it has increased. The new five-point plan was introduced to bring legal migration down.

What is included in the UK Government’s five-point immigration plan?

The Home Secretary originally proposed the following:

What subsequent changes were made?

Just before Christmas 2023, the Home Secretary stated that rather than the Minimum Income Requirement for a Spouse/Partner Visa being increased to £38,700, it would rise to £29,000 in 2024, with further increases in the future. This move was in response to significant pressure from Immigration Solicitors, Barristers, and migration advocacy groups who argued that a £20,000 increase would result in families being torn asunder. There were also concerns that increasing the threshold so dramatically in one move would swell the legal challenges being brought by applicants and their family members.

What should I do in light of the proposed changes to the UK immigration rules/criteria?

The most important point is there is no need to panic. Prime Minister Rish Sunak must call an election by 28 January 2025. However, this would mean campaigning over Christmas, which no one wants. Furthermore, on 18 December 2023, the Prime Minister told journalists that 2024 would be an election year. It is widely anticipated that the Labour Party will win the next election (although there is no guarantee). This means that some changes, including the increase in the Minimum Income Requirement, may not be implemented.

Those wanting to renew a family visa will be able to do so without having to meet the new earnings threshold.

If you want to come to the UK as a Skilled Worker or as a family member, you should apply as soon as possible, before any of the changes mentioned above become law. Employers, especially those in the care sector, must also move swiftly if they want to employ overseas talent in 2024.

An experienced Immigration Law Solicitor can assist individuals and businesses in all matters of immigration law and provide bespoke advice on how the changes outlined in the five-point plan may impact their plans.

For further information on any personal or business immigration matter, please speak to our immigration law team on  01772 447000 or reach out to us on our seven-day-a-week WhatsApp helpline 07869760533.

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