2020 was an emotional journey for all of us. It was not only a year mostly spent under national lockdown, but marked the end of Brexit negotiations and of our EU free movement rights.
So, what are the options to work in the UK after Brexit?
If you arrived to the UK after 31 December 2020 or have not yet arrived you may still be eligible for a status under the EU Settlement Scheme.
To apply you must be either:
- An EU, EEA or Swiss citizen with an EU, EEA or Swiss family member who arrived in the UK by 11pm on 31 December 2020, or
- A non-EEA family member of an EU, EEA or Swiss family member who arrived in the UK by 11pm on 31 December 2020
- Have a valid document certifying permanent residence or a permanent residence card issued to you under the EEA regulations on the basis of your family relationship to that citizen, or
- If you do not have a valid document certifying permanent residence or a permanent residence card show evidence of the following:
- your relationship to that family member
- that your relationship existed by 31 December 2020 (by 31 December 2025 if your spouse or civil partner is a Swiss citizen), and
- that it continues to exist on the date you apply.
If you are the unmarried partner of an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen you must provide evidence that you have lived together for at least 2 years by 31 December 2020.
Children, grandchildren or great-grandchildren aged 21 or over who were not previously granted pre-settled status as a child under 21 will need to provide proof that they are or for the relevant period were dependent on their EEA, Swiss citizen or Northern Irish parent, grandparent, great-grandparent or of their spouse/civil partner.
If your parent, grandparent or great-grandparent is not an EEA or Swiss citizen or person of Northern Ireland but is the spouse or civil partner of someone who is, you must also provide evidence:
- of your relationship to your parent, grandparent or great-grandparent
- that your parent, grandparent or great-grandparent was the spouse, civil partner or unmarried (durable) partner of an EU, EEA or Swiss citizen, or person or Northern Ireland, by 31 December 2020.
If you arrived in the UK by 31 December 2020 you have until the 30 June 2021 to submit your application to the EU Settlement Scheme.
You can apply using the EU Exit: ID Document Check app.
Your eligibility for settled or pre-settled status will depend on whether you have completed a ‘continuous qualifying period’ of 5 years or less in the UK.
If you have already applied and have been granted pre-settled status it is important to be aware of the absence rules and keep track of how many days you spend outside the UK.
Since pre-settled status cannot be extended, you must ensure you do not exceed the allowed limit for absences so you may later qualify for settled status.
If you have started to work in the UK before 31 December 2020 but did not meet the residency requirements for pre-settled status you may be eligible for a frontier worker permit provided you:
- are from the EU, Switzerland, Norway, Iceland or Liechtenstein
- are not primarily resident in the UK
- are an employed or self-employed person who has started working in the UK by 31 December 2020, and
- kept working in the UK at least once every 12 months since you started working here, or
- retained your status of being self-employed or a worker under regulation 4 of the Citizen’s Rights (Frontier Workers) (EU Exit) Regulations 2020.
Those who are neither eligible for the EU Settlement Scheme nor the Frontier Worker permit will need to meet the requirements of a different immigration route.
To qualify under the new points-based immigration system applicants must demonstrate that they have a job offer from an approved sponsor which meets the requirements of the Skilled Worker or the Intra-Company Transfer route.
On 1 December 2020, the Skilled Worker route replaced the former Tier 2 General visa. Applicants will need to be awarded 70 points in total. 50 mandatory points must be collected for sponsorship (20 points), a job at RQF level 3 or above (medium skill level) (20 points) and for meeting the English language requirement at level B1 (10 points).
The remaining 20 points are tradeable based on salary as follows:
- A salary which equals or exceeds both £25,600 per year and the going rate for the occupation (20 points)
- A PhD qualification which is relevant to the job (10 points), and a salary which equals or exceeds both £23,040 per year and 90% of the going rate for the occupation (10 points)
- A PhD qualification in a STEM subject which is relevant to the job, and a salary which equals or exceeds both £20,480 per year and 80% of the going rate for the occupation (20 points)
- A job in a shortage occupation, and a salary which equals or exceeds both £20,480 per year and 80% of the going rate for the occupation (20 points)
- Being a new entrant to the labour market, and a salary which equals or exceeds both £20,480 per year and 70% of the going rate for the occupation (20 points)
- A job in a listed health or education occupation, and a salary which equals or exceeds both £20,480 per year and 80% of the going rate for the occupation (20 points).
The Intra-Company Transfer route allows employers to move existing employees from overseas offices to roles in the UK if they:
- Have been employed by the sending organisation for at least 12 months prior to the date of transfer (3 months for graduate trainees)
- Meet the minimum salary requirement of £41,500/year, and
- The minimum skill level of RQF level 6 or above.
Those admitted on the Intra-Company Transfer route will be able to switch into the Skilled Worker route whilst still in the UK if they meet the qualifying requirements for that route.
However, some applicants will not need to rely on sponsorship when applying under the Global Talent, Innovator/Start-up, Investor, Sole Representative of an overseas business or Family Life categories.
For further information on the above immigration routes or to discuss specific matters related to your application, get in touch with a member of our team: 01235 841 568 or firstname.lastname@example.org