This week the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration Act 2009 received the Royal Assent, which means the Borders, Citizenship and Immigration ‘Bill’ has now officially become an Act of Parliament and is now enshrined in UK Law.
The care sector, which includes hospitals, care homes and domiciliary care agencies employs a large number of non-EU care workers and nurses on work permits.
Many of these migrant workers, employed on work permits, were expecting to obtain permanent residency or ‘Indefinite Leave to Remain’ (ILR) when their current permits expire. Under the new Act they may find that this is no longer possible.
Employers could find themselves having to once again extend work permits, which for some will mean registering as sponsors under Tier 2, if they want to keep their overseas staff such as Senior Carers and Nurses.
Thousands of work permit holders have already had to extend work permits and leave to remain in the last three years when the Home Office moved the then ILR limit from four to five years.
Now the Government is bringing in further changes, which it openly admits will cut down the numbers of migrant workers settling in the UK.
Whether or not you agree with immigration, there can be no argument about the need for overseas workers in the long term care sector.
What should you do if you are in the UK on a Work Permit?
Evelie Padadac of Immigration Advisers Bison UK advises migrant workers to “apply for Indefinite Leave to Remain as soon as you are eligible and make sure your current permit takes you beyond five years of continuous work”.
What should you do if you are in the UK under other categories such as ILR?
Apply for Citizenship as soon as you are eligible, unless of course you have no desire to be a British Citizen.
If you do not agree with the above changes, you should write to your MP and ask him or her to write to Phil Woolas to request a longer transitional period.
If you need any immigration advice or help with Settlement, Citizenship, Sponsorship, extending Work Permits, Visa or an appeal against a refusal please email:
For more information on the Act see: http://www.ukba.homeoffice.gov.uk/sitecontent/documents/policyandlaw/legislation/bci