Read about the latest immigration changes and news which may affect you.
Home Office's latest update on graduate route – 6th January 2021
- The Route is still scheduled to be launched in summer 2021.
- Students who were required to commence or continue their studies via distance or blended learning due to COVID-19 will be eligible to switch into the graduate route on a concessionary basis even if they spend some time studying outside the UK.
- Students who are completing their course in summer 2021, including those who commenced a one-year Masters programme in September 2020, will benefit from this concession if they enter the UK on or before 6 April 2021 and complete the final semester of their studies in the UK.
- Students who commence a one-year Masters programme in January 2021 will benefit from this concession if they enter the UK before 27 September 2021 and complete the final semester of their studies In the UK
Student Immigration Update - October 2020
Please note that the maintenance requirement for Student Route visa application will increase from 1st December 2020 to £1334 per month up to a maximum of nine months which is £12,006.
Home Office's latest update on graduate route - 1 July 2020
The government announced on 1st July2002, as part of the new graduate route, international students who complete a PhD from Summer 2021 can stay in the UK for 3 years after study to live and work. Please see the details of the announcement.
Home Office's update on graduate route - 16 June 2020
- The Graduate route is still scheduled to be launched in summer 2021, as previously announced. Further information about the route will be published in due course.
- Students will normally be expected to undertake their studies in the UK to be eligible for the Graduate route. However, if students are required to either continue their current studies or commence a new course by distance or blended learning due to Covid-19, they will still be eligible to switch into the Graduate route on a concessionary basis if they spent some time studying outside the UK.
- Students will benefit from this concession if they enter the UK before 6 April 2021 and complete the final semester of their studies in the UK.
- Such students will still need to have extant leave as a Tier 4 student or Student when the new route launches in 2021 and meet other eligibility criteria to be eligible for the route.
Immigration guidance - updated on 26 May 2020
The Home Office has now released updated immigration guidance for visa holders offering extensions until 31 July 2020 for visas that expire between 24 January 2020 and 31 July 2020.
Your visa will be extended to 31 July 2020 if you cannot leave the UK because of travel restrictions or self-isolation related to coronavirus (COVID-19).
You must request an extension by updating your records with the Coronavirus Immigration Team (CIT) if your visa is expiring and you cannot leave the UK at present but are not planning to stay in the UK in the long term.
If you have already had your visa extended to 31 May 2020 you visa will be extended automatically to 31 July 2020.
You will be expected to return to your home country as soon as it is safe and possible to do so.
Please read the immigration guidance carefully and take action if needed.
New UK points-based Immigration system
On 19th February 2020, the Government has published information on the UK’s new points-based immigration system.
According to the UK Visas & Immigration, from 1 January 2021, free movement will end and be replaced with the UK’s new points-based immigration system to cater for the most highly skilled workers, students and a range of other specialist work routes including for global leaders and innovators. All migrants looking to enter the UK to work or study will need to apply for permission in advance.
Students and specialist occupations
Students will be covered by the points-based system. They will achieve the required points if they can demonstrate that they have an offer from an approved educational institution, speak English and are able to support themselves during their studies in the UK.
Under the current immigration rules, there are a range of other immigration routes for specialist occupations, including innovators, ministers of religion, sportspeople and to support the arts. Our broad approach for January 2021 will be to open existing routes that already apply to non-EU citizens, to EU citizens (the current ‘Tier 5’).
International students and graduates
Student visa routes will be opened up to EU, EEA and Swiss citizens. You’ll be able to apply for a visa to study in the UK if you:
- have been offered a place on a course
- can speak, read, write and understand English
- have enough money to support yourself and pay for your course
A new graduate immigration route will be available to international students who have completed a degree in the UK from summer 2021. You’ll be able to work, or look for work, in the UK at any skill level for up to 2 years.
For more information view the Government's publication.