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Government releases statement of intent for changes affecting international students

The UK government has released their statement of intent, which outlines the changes they wish to make to the immigration rules around international student work. It is expected that the changes will come into effect on 6th April 2012.

• Students will still be able to work 20 hours per week during term time and full time during vacations and for the remainder of time after their course until their visa expires.

• Tier 1 (Post-Study Work) will close to new applicants on 5 April 2012.

• Tier 2 (General) will be open to recent graduates with a Bachelor's or Master's degree, PhD, or a PGCE or PGDE, from a UK recognised or listed body. As per the normal Tier 2 requirements, applicants must have an offer of a skilled job from a licensed sponsor and be paid at least £20,000 or the minimum appropriate rate set out in the relevant Code of Practice. However, the employer will not have to complete a resident labour market test and the jobs will not be subject to the annual limit on Tier 2 numbers (ie, the Certificates of Sponsorship will be in the Unrestricted category).

• Tier 4 migrants will be able to switch into Tier 2, as described above, once they have been awarded their qualification. This means they will not be able to move from Tier 4 to Tier 2 if they have not completed their studies, except for PhD students who, as now, must have completed at least 12 months of study.  

• A new Tier 1 (Graduate Entrepreneur) scheme will be introduced for those who have been identified by UK universities as having developed world-class innovative ideas or entrepreneurial skills, but who are not yet in a position to meet the full requirements of the Tier 1 (Entrepreneur) route. There will be 1,000 places in the first year and this will allow them to develop their businesses in the UK. The HEI will have a key role to play in identifying and maintaining contact with applicants.

View the Statement of Intent: Changes affecting study, post-study work and maintenance requirements for students and workers.

The Association of Graduate Recruiters (AGR) is running masterclasses for employers and careers professionals on this topic on 30th March in London and 23rd March in Manchester.

Tags: international students tier 1 tier 2 tier 4 permission to work UKBA Sector

Created on: 22 February 2012

Last updated: 22 February 2012

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