UK: Tier 2 Certificates of Sponsorship to be staggered; Tier 2 minimum salary to be maintained

The Home Office has published new Immigration Rules that will impose the following changes:

  • The availability of Tier 2 Certificates of Sponsorship (CoS) will be staggered throughout the year, instead of split equally in twelve monthly allocations. Starting April 6, 2016, 2,200 CoS will be available in the first month, gradually falling to 1,000 after a year.  
  • Unlike in other years, the minimum salary for Tier 2 workers will not increase in line with wage inflation. The Home Office has nevertheless indicated that a policy change may be made at a later date based on advice from Migration Advisory Committee’s (MAC) proposal.  It is likely that an announcement on the MAC’s advice will be made in the coming weeks.

What This Means for Employers and Foreign Nationals

Employers and Tier 2 workers should be prepared for fewer available CoS and should contact their immigration professional to discuss alternative application options.

Employers should benefit from the Home Office’s decision not to raise minimum salaries for Tier 2 workers this year.