The UK Border Agency has issued the following announcement on Tier 2 Certificates of Sponsorship:
Sponsors submitting a request for an initial or additional allocation of Certificates of Sponsorship for consideration at the January panel should be aware that due to the holiday period the panel will convene on 7 January 2011.
Applications must be received by 24 December 2010 to be considered by the January panel. Any applications received after this date will not be considered. Therefore, applications must be submitted in good time taking account of the Christmas post arrangements. Sponsors will be notified of the outcome of their application by 14 January 2011. The February panel date will not be affected and applications for this panel must be received by 24 January 2011.
Two Tier Tier 2?
Following the earlier ‘interim cap’ sponsoring employers were stripped of their Certificates of Sponsorship (CoS) allocations, as the government wanted to avoid a rush of Tier 2 applications prior to a permanent migration Cap next April.
Employers now have to reapply for a CoS, which replaced the old Work Permits following the introduction of the points based system, but, as employers have found to their cost, it is becoming virtually impossible to obtain one as the government’s especially for lower paid workers (below £20,000) such as Senior Carers – even though they are officially listed on the Shortage Occupations list.
The UK Border Agency are effectively running a two tier Tier 2 system where higher paid workers are given priority over their lower paid counterparts.
Applications for a previously allocated CoS now goes before a new ‘panel’ which sits monthly to decide on who shall get their CoS back and those who will be refused.
Candidates unable to obtain a CoS from an employer can go home to their country of origin and wait until their employers are ready for them.
Old work permit holders with less than 5 years service are in a difficult position unless they can apply before their visas expire and should seek expert advice from an OISC registered immigration adviser.
The ECCA, a trade body which represents a large proportion of care industry employers, are taking the government to court this month in a challenge to the migration cap. The Judicial Review is due to be heard in London’s High Court on 15 December 2010.
The ECCA claims the immigration cap for non-EU migrants will seriously put at risk care homes in Britain.
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