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Proposed changes to the Tier 1 category of the points-based system (PBS)

04 December 2009

The Migration Advisory Committee (MAC) published today a report following the Home Secretary request for assessment of Tier 1 of the Points Based System (PBS) in light of the changing economic circumstances.

The report reviews category of the Points-Based System and recommends a number of changes which will be considered by the Government before deciding which of the proposed changes to implement.

Some of the MAC’s recommendations include:

Tier 1 General

· Professional qualifications held in addition to an undergraduate degree to be recognised as equivalent to a master’s degree for the purposes of the PBS;

· Individuals with an undergraduate degree to be allowed to enter under Tier 1, subject to an appropriate earnings threshold;

· Age – a threshold for the age category to be extended to allow points to be claimed for those up to the age of 40;

· Qualifications – reinstatement of points award for a bachelor’s degree with reduced points being awarded to a PhD holders;

· Previous earnings – increase of the minimum threshold, points to be awarded for earnings above £25,000;

· Additional salary band to be introduced with a threshold of £150,000 (75 points to be awarded);

· Full review of the salary conversion model;

· Initial leave to remain to be reduced from three to two years, with a three year extension subject to evidence that the individual is in highly skilled employment.

Tier 1

· Leave entitlement for PSW applicants remains at its current level of two years.

Tier 1 and Investor

· Introduce measures to allow detailed examination of whether jobs created through the Entrepreneur route represent a genuine net increase in jobs.

The Government is expected to make an announcement on whether the recommendations will be accepted in early 2010. Until the decision is made, Tier 1 will continue to operate in its current form.

Contact us as soon as possible if you are concerned or wish to know more on how the proposed changes might impact your immigration status and future options.

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