Hundreds of overseas Senior Carers on Work Permits are moving jobs, desperately trying to beat the deadline before Tier 2 of the points based system (PBS) starts next month.
Once Tier 2, for Work Permits, commences at the end of November, Senior Carers renewing their permits and visas will be doing so under the new points system, the biggest immigration shake-up for 50 years.
Employers will also need to register as sponsors in order to apply for extensions, and from the telephone calls I have been receiving recently, most do not even know where to start.
Overseas Senior Carers, from The Philippines, India and other countries, are naturally worried that they may not be able to renew their permits after November, especially those who will have less than five years of full time work under their belt.
In order to qualify for Indefinite Leave to Remain (ILR) you need at least five years of continuous work, not including any time spent on a Student Visa. However, the rules could change under proposals in the new Citizenship Bill currently going through Parliament.
The UK Border Agency has said that transitional measures will be put in place for Senior Carers after PBS kicks in, and that whilst their employer sponsor will have to apply under the on-line system, the candidate will not have to meet the strict new criteria.
To add further confusion, the Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) recently announced that “skilled” Senior Care Workers are to be included in the ‘Recommended UK Shortage Occupations List for Tier 2 of the PBS’, but at a minimum salary of £8.80 per hour.
The dilemma for many Senior Carers is that their permits do not expire until next year or later, which means it is far too early to apply for an extension. On the other hand, if they change jobs now and move to another employer (paying the “going rate” £7.02 per hour), they can immediately obtain a brand new five year Work Permit, which hopefully secures their stay in the UK until they can apply for permanent residence.
The decision as to whether to stay with an employer, with whom they may be very happy, or leave and go for a five year Work Permit will have a deep and lasting effect on the rest of their lives and that of their families.
If you are looking for an employer paying the “going rate” £7.02, Bison UK has a number of Senior Carer vacancies.
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