Major Immigration Rule Reforms: March 11, 2024

Yesterday (March 11, 2024) brings in one of the biggest changes to the Immigration Rules since the Skilled Worker route was introduced in December 2020, which are detailed below. However, next month brings in further changes to the rules.

UK's 2024 Immigration Reforms

Changes to the Health and Care route

Those applying under the Health and Care route under SOC codes 6145 and 6146 will no longer be able to sponsor their dependants to come to the UK, unless they fall into the below exception:

  • They currently hold a Skilled Worker visa under the Health and Care route on SOC codes 6145 or 6146, that was granted before 11th March 2024; or
  • They submitted a valid application (i.e. submitted it online and paid the relevant fees) for a Skilled Worker visa under the Health and Care route on SOC codes 6145 or 6146, before the 11th March 2024 but have not yet had a decision. They will be able to bring their dependents to the UK.

This means that those that have applied for a Skilled Worker visa under the Health and Care route under SOC codes 6145 or 6146, by 23:59 on Sunday 10th March 2024, will be able to sponsor their dependents provided that they continuously remain on this visa type.

This means that someone that has a pending application with the Home Office but has paid the fees and submitted the application online (note that you do not need to attend an appointment before this date), can sponsor their dependents, including those outside the UK. Those looking to extend their leave will be able to continue to sponsor their dependents, even if they apply after the 11th March 2024.

Any children born to parents that hold a Skilled Worker visa under the Health and Care route on SOC codes 6145 or 6146 that was granted in accordance with the rules in force on or before the 10th March 2024, will be able to sponsor their newly born child.

Unfortunately, everyone applying for a Skilled Worker visa under the Health and Care route on SOC codes 6145 or 6146, even if you are inside the UK (on another visa such as a student visa) with your dependants; will not be able to bring your dependants if you have submitted your application from 11th March 2024.

Changes to Care Providers and Licences

The Home Office has also added a requirement that all sponsors applying for a Sponsor Licence from 11th March 2024, must be registered with the Care Quality Commission (CQC), even if they are exempted by law. All individuals sponsored by an organisation that is currently not CQC registered will not be affected, and their sponsor can continue to sponsor them in the UK.

However, all new applicants can only be sponsored if the organisation becomes CQC regulated. 

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