Skip to main content

New immigration rules will make it harder for employers to attract and recruit staff

The government announced significant changes to the UK immigration system which will come into force next year. It believes that current migration levels are “far too high” and that “this package will mean around 300,000 people who came to the UK last year would now not be able to come”. 

Key changes

These include:  

  • The minimum salary needed to get a skilled worker visa will rise from £26,200 to £38,700 in all sectors other than those engaged in health and care. 
  • Migrants will not be able to bring their family members to live in the UK unless they earn £38,700 (currently it's £18,600). This provision will, however unlike the above, apply to staff coming into the UK on health and care visas.
  • The annual immigration health surcharge will increase by 66% to £1,035.
  • The Shortage Occupation List (introduced to assist struggling industries) will be replaced with a new Immigration Salary List.
  • The Migration Advisory Committee will review the Immigration Salary List against the increased salary thresholds which will reduce the number of occupations on the list with a potential for it to be scrapped completely.

Our view

Our immigration specialist Padma Tadi-Booth has said: “These proposed changes are another blow for many UK employers, particularly those in the hospitality, care and construction sectors, who are already struggling to recruit and retain skilled staff.

"These proposals are pop politics, playing with people's livelihoods and businesses in a bid to win votes.  The government should be focusing on a long-term solutions that reflects the needs of business and of society. 

"We can assist businesses in the sector with their recruitment and retention plans so they can support and attract talent from the ever-shrinking recruitment pool.  Having a strong workplace culture, aligned with core values has never been more important”. 

Contact us

Please contact Padma Tadi-Booth or Mandeep Khroud for help and support.