Introduction of TIER 1 (formerly known as TIER 1) :
The United Kingdom's Tier 1 visa immigration scheme is part of the new points based system for employment-based immigration. Tier 1 visas will be for highly skilled migrants, entrepreneurs, investors, and foreign graduate students. The Tier 1 scheme will replace the schemes that cover these immigration categories once it is implemented in early 2008. Tier 1 is designed to attract top talent from outside the European Union who can contribute the most to the UK economy.
Migrants coming to the UK under Tier 1 visas do not need a job offer or a sponsor and are free to seek employment anywhere in the UK. A person must successfully score 75 points under a points based system to come to the UK under Tier 1. Migrants who are successfully granted leave in the UK under Tier 1 can stay for three years. After three years, a migrant can renew their Tier 1 visa.
The Points Based System :
In each category of Tier 1, points will be earned according to three sets of criteria:
Criteria specific to each category, such as age and past experience in regards to the General Highly Skilled Migrants sub-category. Migrants will need to score at least 75 points to pass.
English language ability. Migrants will be required to score 10 points in an assessment of their English language competency.
Ability for migrants to support themeselves and any dependants, otherwise called Maintenance. Migrants need to score 10 points in this area by demonstrating that they have sufficient funds for their stay in the United Kingdom until they find employment. Sufficient funds are judged against the latest standard of living figures.
Migrants will be required to reach the pass mark for each of the criteria above in order to gain entry under Tier 1 and to remain in the UK when seeking renewal of their Tier 1 visa after three years.
Documentary evidence for a migrant's ability to claim sufficient points will be required. As per the Immigration and Asylum Act of 2006, migrants applying from abroad will have no right of appeal when denied entry, so it is important to make sure this documentation is in order.
WHAT IS THE TIER 1 (HSMP)?
The Highly Skilled Migrant Programme is a visa category designed to let highly skilled individuals work in the UK in their field of expertise, by this means contributing to the development and success of the UK economy. It is suitable for candidates with well-developed and acknowledged skills in their field.
WORK PERMIT VS TIER 1 (HSMP)
The TIER 1 is more flexible than the work permit scheme because you do not require a specific job offer to apply and you do not need permission to change your employment at a later date. The HSMP is specifically designed to allow you to come to the UK to search for relevant job and self-employment opportunities. The only condition is that you must work within your field of expertise and become economically active as soon as possible.
It is possible to switch from work permit employment to the HSMP when already in the UK.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
The TIER 1 runs on a points based system. Individuals need a minimum of 75 points to qualify.
The TIER 1 is usually issued for an initial period of 24 months with the option to extend for a further 3 years if the individual has been successful. After 5 years the individual will then be eligible to make an application for Permanent Leave to Remain in the UK.
TIER 1 - Points Scoring for the Highly Skilled Migrant Program
These are the areas where you can score points towards the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme (UK TIER 1 Visa):
- UK Experience
- English Language
- Other Requirements for TIER 1
- Your Final Points Score