Immigration

Immigration at HSR Solicitors

HSR Solicitors specialises in all aspects of UK nationality and immigration law.  We represent corporate and individual clients alike.

Whether you are an employer looking to hire an overseas national, a skilled professional considering furthering your career in the UK, or a student contemplating a period of study at one of the UK’s universities, or simply wishing to join your family in the UK, we can advise and assist you at all stages of the immigration process.

We will advise you on the legal requirements, your eligibility, the range and content of documentation required, processing timescales and supplementary matters to ensure that the immigration process runs as smoothly as possible for you.  We will also complete and send off the relevant application on your behalf.

Our services: Individuals

The UK immigration system underwent a radical overhaul in 2008 with the introductions of the Points Based System.  We can advise and assist you in any of the applications listed below, which is by no means an exhaustive list

Working in the UK:

1.     Tier 1 – Highly Skilled Migrants

You do not need a job offer when you apply to enter or stay in the UK in these categories, but you will need to pass a points-based assessment and demonstrate that you are highly skilled, have money to support yourself and can speak English.  This category includes application to enter or remain in the UK as:

  • Entrepreneurs
  • Investors
  • Post-study workers

2.     Tier 2 – Skilled Workers

If you have been offered a skilled job in the UK and your prospective employer is willing to sponsor you, you can apply to come or stay here to do that job. This category includes application to enter or remain in the UK as:

  • General
  • Minister of religion
  • Sportsperson
  • Intra company transfer

3.     Tier 3 – Low Skilled Workers

Tier 3 of the points-based system is currently suspended. This means that employers can no longer employ low-skilled workers from outside the EEA.

4.     Tier 5 – Temporary Workers

This category includes application in the following category:

  • Charity workers
  • Religious workers
  • Government authorised exchange
  • International
  • Youth mobility scheme

5.     Other categories

  • Domestic workers in a private household.
  • Sole representatives of overseas firms
  • Representatives of overseas newspapers, news agencies and broadcasting organisations
  • For workers from the European Economic Area and Switzerland

Most European nationals are free to come to and work in the UK – but if you are a national of a country that has recently joined the European Union, you may need to register with the UK Border Agency or apply for our permission before you begin work.

  • For workers and businesspersons from Turkey

Turkish citizens can benefit from a European agreement with Turkey if they want to establish themselves in business in the UK, or if they are already working here legally.

  • For Commonwealth citizens with UK ancestry

If you are a Commonwealth citizen and at least one of your grandparents was born in the UK, you can apply to come here to work.

6.     Studying in the UK – Tier 4 – Students

You can apply from abroad to enter the UK as student.  They type of application you need to submit depends on your age, course, place of study etc.  This category includes application to enter or remain in the UK as:

  • Child student (between 4 and 17 years old)
  • Child visitor (17 years old or under, study up to 6 months)
  • General student (post-16 education)
  • Student visitor (18 years old or over, study up to 6 months, no work permitted)
  • Prospective student (to enter the UK to decide which course to study)

7.     Visiting the UK

We understand that you may have different reasons why you would like to enter the UK.  We can assist you and your family with any of the following applications:

  • general visitor;
  • child visitor;
  • student visitor;
  • business and special visitor.
  • medical treatment;
  • get married or register a civil partnership;
  • Sponsoring a visitor

8.     Partners & Families

  • Partners – entering the UK as the husband, wife, civil partner, fiancé(e), proposed civil partner or unmarried/same-sex partner of a person settled here or a migrant worker/student
  • Children – Bringing your children, including adopted children to UK
  • Elderly dependent relatives Marriage and civil partnership – Getting married or registering a civil partnership in the UK

9.     Settlement and Indefinite Leave to Remain

Applications to settle as:

  • Partner or spouse
  • Family members (except partners)
  • Child, including adopted child, aged under 18 of a parent or relative who is in the UK
  • Parent, grandparent or other dependant relative aged 18 or over of a person
  • Victims of domestic violence.
  • Retired person
  • living in the UK in a relevant category for five years:
    • Tier 1 or Tier 2 of the points-based system
    • work permit holder
    • businessperson
    • innovator
    • investor
    • representative of an overseas newspaper, news agency or broadcasting organisation
    • private servant in a diplomatic household
    • domestic worker in a private household
    • overseas government employee
    • minister of religion, missionary or member of a religious order
    • airport-based operational staff of an overseas-owned airline
    • self-employed lawyer
    • writer, composer or artist
    • UK ancestry
    • highly skilled migrant under the Highly Skilled Migrant Programme (HSMP)
  • Bereaved partner
  • long residence, if you have been living continuously in the UK for 10 years (or 14 years)
  • Settlement or an extension of your stay if you were given: exceptional leave to remain
  • Discretionary leave to remain
  • Humanitarian protection.
  • Schengen (business) visa applications across Europe;

10.  Naturalization and British Citizenship

We have the specialist expertise to be able to assess claims for nationality or citizenship status.

Our services: Business Immigration

Employers and education providers wishing to sponsor a migrant

Employers and education providers in the UK should ensure that they can legally employ migrant workers and teach migrant students.

The register of sponsors lists all organisations that the UK Border Agency has licensed to employ migrant workers or sponsor migrant students.

Under the points-based system, if you are an employer or education provider who wants to act as a sponsor, you will need a licence. When you get a licence, you are added to the register of sponsors.

The register of sponsors lists the name, location and sponsor rating (see below) of every registered organisation.

If you are not registered as a licenced sponsor you cannot employ migrant workers under the Tier 2 category.  Licence as a sponsor means that you have numerous responsibilities to keep up with.  You must be aware of these responsibilities, as non compliance can lead to hefty fines and/or a downgrade or even a removal from the sponsorship register.

Our services range as follows:

  • Sponsor Licence applications
  • Management of the sponsor licensing system, including preparation for UKBA audits;
  • Assessing your migrants’ points before issuing a certificate of sponsorship (CoS) and Issuing CoS
  • Visa and Further Leave to Remain applications for sponsoring migrant workers, including compliance with the codes of practice for Tier 2, requirements for the resident labour market test and employing migrants from the shortage occupation list.

 Compliance with employment law

We take pride in the fact that our Employment and Immigration team of solicitors work closely together. We are therefore also able to provide you and enhances service covering advise on a wide range of ancillary issues relating to employment law.

In 2008, the UK Border Agency introduced Civil Penalties for businesses failing to carry out the relevant pre-employment document checks and annual follow-up checks (where necessary).  This has resulted in numerous businesses being penalized with hefty fines.

We can advise and assist you in the following areas:

  • Illegal working and recruitment procedures, including initial stage documents checks
  • Objections to and appeals against UKBA Civil Penalties;
  • European Residence Permits and in-country registration requirements;
  • Rights of free movement within the EEA;