Changes to Tier 4 Immigration Rules

The UK's immigration authorities (UK Visas and Immigration) have announced further changes to the UK's immigration laws. Many of these changes will relate to Tier 4 migrants (i.e. students). The main changes will:
  • bring an end to the entitlement of students at publicly funded colleges from working, bringing them in line with those at private colleges
  • permit UK university students to study a new course at the same level where there’s a logical connection to their previous course or where the UK university confirms that the new course supports the student's career aspirations. The Home Office have confirmed that there will be "credibility interviews and sanctions against universities who abuse this rule"
  • introduce a ban on college students extending their Tier 4 visas in the UK unless they are studying at an ‘embedded college’
  • introduce a ban on college students from being "switching" into Tier 2 (General), Tier 2 (Intra-Company Transfer) or Tier 5 visas whilst in the UK, and require them to apply from outside the UK
  • reduce from 3 years to 2 years the time limit for study at further education level
  • stop Tier 4 dependants from taking a low or unskilled job, but allow them to take part-time or full-time skilled work (from the autumn)