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Law Firms In UK Affected By Visa Cap

20 Aug 2010


Law firms in UK are getting affected by the introduction of visa cap on non-EU migrants. Many of the UK law firms have strong ties with Indian educational institutes and Universities. Also, the law firms have recruitment drives in India to choose the best talents for training. Generally, many firms hire foreign talent in the UK firms through UK work permits, but the visa cap is cutting down the hiring foreign workforce. The temporary UK visa cap is applicable to applicants for Tier 1(general) visa with the except for in-country and extension applicants and UK Tier 2(general) visa -  limit on the number of Employer Sponsorship Licenses issued by the employers or firms in the UK for existing employees or new migrants.

As per the new UK visa rules, any firm having obtained more than five UK work visas between the period of July 2009 till March 2010 will now get 15 percent lesser UK Tier 2 visas. UK Tier 2 visas are needed to hire interns and trainees from overseas.

Several law firms are complaining for having to refuse Indian interns wanting to come to the UK on UK work visas due to the annual cap on UK work permits. A famous law firm Norton Rose said that it could not get UK work visa even for a single overseas trainee.

However, the new rules do not impact students, entrepreneurs, sports persons, ministers of religion and investors visas.

The UK Law Society is seeking feedback from several law firms in the UK to be submitted to the MAC(Migrant Advisory Committee) and the UKBA(United Kingdom Border Agency). Both these agencies are consulting public to formulate levels of permanent limits on UK visas to be introduced with effect from April 2011.


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