Planning to Hire Foreign Nationals in the U.K. in 2021? Apply for a Tier 2 Sponsor Licence

Recent U.K. government statements have confirmed what many have suspected for some time: the post-January 2021 immigration system will be predicated on a reworked version of the Tier 2 sponsorship route. In the first episode of our new Faegre Drinker Immigration Law Podcast, we take a close look at the Tier 2 sponsorship application process and explain why U.K. employers planning to hire foreign nationals in 2021 should apply for a Sponsor Licence before the immigration system changes take effect.

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Update: Further Details on the United Kingdom’s New Points-Based Immigration System

On Monday 13 July, the U.K. government published further details outlining their plan for a new immigration system which will amend the existing points-based immigration system. This system is to take effect from 1 January 2021. The 130-page document doesn’t contain a lot more detail than the proposals released earlier in the year, which we summarized in April. The new system will end free movement with the EU and represents a significant change to immigration in the U.K. The system will apply to both EU/European Economic Area (EEA) and third-country applicants.

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Coronavirus Update: Travelers From the ‘Safe List’ Can Now Enter the European Union

The 27 European Union member nations gave majority approval on Tuesday, 30 June 2020 to allow non-essential travel from its initial “safe list” of countries. People travelling from the countries on the “safe list” can travel to the EU for business or leisure.

For the full alert, visit the Faegre Drinker website.

New U.K. Immigration Route for Hong Kong Nationals Registered as British National (Overseas) Citizens

On Wednesday, 1 July 2020, Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab confirmed, in a statement to Parliament about Hong Kong, a new bespoke U.K. immigration route for British National (Overseas) (BNO) citizens and their dependants. BNO status is a previously obscure form of British nationality held by an estimated 2.9 million people in Hong Kong that, until now, did not allow for long-term residence in the United Kingdom.

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Executive Order Restricts Employment-Based Immigration

On June 22, 2020, President Donald Trump issued an executive order suspending the entry of individuals to the U.S. from several nonimmigrant visa categories, effective 12:01 a.m. ET on June 24, 2020 and ending December 31, 2020. This order may be continued as deemed necessary and modifications may be made within 30 days and subsequently every 60 days.

For the full alert, visit the Faegre Drinker website.

U.S. Restricts Entry of Chinese Students and Researchers

On May 29, 2020, President Trump issued an executive order suspending the admission of Chinese nationals seeking entry to the U.S. with F-1 or J-1 visas if those visa holders have been affiliated with certain institutions tied to the Chinese military.

The order, which went into effect June 1, 2020 at 12:00 p.m. eastern daylight time, focuses primarily on the entry of Chinese nationals with J-1 or F-1 visas, meaning individuals not currently in the U.S. The order gives discretion to the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Homeland Security to implement the order. This affects Chinese nationals who receive funding from, are now or were previously employed by, currently study or previously studied at, or currently conduct research at or on behalf of or previously conducted research at or on behalf of an institution that supports China’s “military-civil fusion strategy” who a) are seeking to apply at a U.S. embassy or consulate for an F-1 or J-1 visa stamp, or b) already have a valid F-1 or J-1 visa stamp, are outside the U.S., and are seeking to enter the U.S. with that visa.

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