Changes to Tier 1 (General) Are In Effect

There are two important changes for migrants making initial applications under Tier 1 (General) of the points-based system:

  • the introduction of an interim limit for Tier 1 (General) applications made outside the UK, for the period until 31 March 2011; and
  • an increase in the number of points required for an initial Tier 1 (General) application, from 95 to 100.

Interim limits for Tier 1 (General) applications

The Interim limit will be administered on a monthly basis. However, the way that you apply for permission to enter the UK under Tier 1 (General) remains the same.

If your application meets all the requirements and the limit has not been reached for the month when you applied, you will be issued a visa in the usual way.

If your application meets all the requirements but the limit for that month would be exceeded if we issued you a visa, your application will be deferred to the next month when the limit allocation reopens. All applications will be processed in the order in which they are received.

The interim limit will not affect:

  • applicants who are already in the UK (with current permission to stay in any immigration category);
  • dependants of Tier 1 (General) applicants; or
  • applicants to the Investor, Entrepreneur and Post-study work categories of Tier 1.

The Monthly Tier 1 (General) immigration limit page on the UKBA website contains more information about the interim limit.

Increase in the points required for Tier 1 (General) applications

The number of points required for an initial Tier 1 (General) application has increased from 95 to 100. Additionally:

  • the points awarded to those with previous earnings of £150,000 have increased from 75 to 80; and
  • the points awarded to those who have an eligible MBA have increased from 75 to 80.

These changes apply to all initial Tier 1 (General) applications paid for on or after 19 July 2010, whether they are made inside or outside the UK.

The points requirement will remain at 95 points for applicants who are currently in the UK under one of the following highly skilled worker categories:

  • Tier 1 (General)
  • Highly Skilled Migrant Programme
  • Self-employed lawyer
  • Writer, composer or artist

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